George Washington Papers

To George Washington from Thomas Jefferson, 14 February 1793

From Thomas Jefferson

[Philadelphia] Feb. 14. 93.

Th: Jefferson presents his respects to the President & returns him the letters from the Commissioners.1 he does not recollect whether he shewed him his letter to Ellicot the only one he has written to him since last Summer. lest he should not have done it he now incloses it.2 he thinks it impossible that any thing in that could have produced ill humour in Ellicot towards the Commissioners & if the President should be of the same opinion, & could recollect it in answering Dr Stewart, he would be glad he should be informed so.3

Th: J. having a petition referred to him by the House of Representatives which renders it necessary for him to examine a little the extent of the claims of the 6. nations Southwardly, in former times, he will thank the President for an hour’s use of Evans’s analysis.4

AL, DNA: RG 59, Miscellaneous Letters; LB, DNA: RG 59, George Washington’s Correspondence with His Secretaries of State; LB (photocopy), DLC:GW.

1Jefferson enclosed a letter from the D.C. commissioners to GW of 8 Feb. 1793 and one from David Stuart to GW of that same date, the latter of which has not been found.

2For Jefferson’s letters to Andrew Ellicott of 3 July 1792 and 15 Jan. 1793, see Jefferson Papers, description begins Julian P. Boyd et al., eds. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson. 40 vols. to date. Princeton, N.J., 1950—. description ends 24:151, 25:54–55. In the January letter Jefferson tried to convince Ellicott that for the good of the Federal City, he should not engage in a public dispute with the D.C. commissioners. Ellicott, however, ignored Jefferson’s advice. For Ellicott’s letter in the 8 Feb. issue of the Maryland Journal and Baltimore Advertiser, in which he defends himself against charges of error and malice, see GW to Uriah Forrest, 20 Jan. 1793, n.5. See also Stuart to GW, 18 Feb. 1793, and note 1.

3On 3 Mar., GW replied to Stuart, informing him that Jefferson denied supporting Ellicott’s condemnation of the commissioners. The next day Jefferson sent to GW his two most recent letters to Ellicott, which the president immediately forwarded to Stuart.

4The petition sent to Jefferson by the House was that of John Rogers of Virginia (Journal ofthe House 5:107, 113). For Jefferson’s report on Rogers’s petition, which concerned his claims on western lands, see Jefferson to GW, 16 Feb. 1793. The book Jefferson requested from GW was Lewis Evans’s Geographical, Historical, Political, Philosophical and Mechanical Essays: The First, Containing An Analysis of A General Map of the Middle British Colonies in America; and of the Country of the Confederate Indians . . . (Philadelphia, 1755). At the time of his death, GW’s library contained Evans’s Geographical, Historical, Political, Philosophical and Mechanical Essays. Number II . . . (Philadelphia, 1756), but not the book Jefferson mentioned (Griffin, Boston Athenæum Washington Collection, description begins Appleton P.C. Griffin, comp. A Catalogue of the Washington Collection in the Boston Athenæum. Cambridge, Mass., 1897. description ends 558).

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