Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Thomas Jefferson to Elizabeth Trist, 10 May 1813

To Elizabeth Trist

Poplar forest May 10. 13.

Dear Madam

I brought the inclosed book to this place, the last fall, intending to forward it to you; but having a neighbor here who loves to laugh, I lent it to him to read; he lent it to another, and so it went the rounds of the neighborhood and is returned to me at my Spring visit to this place. I now forward it, and if it diverts you for an hour or two, I shall be gratified by it. I was myself amused by it’s humor as much as it’s object would permit me to be; for that is evidently to deride the republican branches of our government. I left all well at Monticello, except Benjamin whose health is very precarious. Lewis is become the favorite of all. his vivacity, his intelligence, & his beauty (for the mark in his forehead is disappearing) make him a perfect pet. you will perceive from these senile details of the nursery that I am becoming old. I wish I had no other proofs. but I am weakening very sensibly. I can walk no further than my garden. I ride however, and in a carriage can come here without fatigue.

I fear however this will not long be the case. your friends mr & mrs Divers, tho’ they think themselves getting crazy, are in better health than usual. I am hastening back to their first pea-dinner, but I think I shall be too late. in your Southern situation I presume you have them now. Mr Randolph has been siesed with the military fever. he expects to be called to his regiment at Blackrock this month. he will be a great loss to his family, and no man in the world a greater one to his affairs. the loss of our old friend Dr Rush you will have heard & regretted as all must who knew him. Accept the assurance of my constant & sincere friendship and respect, with a tender of my devoirs to mrs & mr Gilmer

Th: Jefferson

PoC (MoSHi: TJC); at foot of text: “Mrs Trist”; endorsed by TJ. Enclosure: James Kirke Paulding, The Diverting History of John Bull and Brother Jonathan. By Hector Bull-us (New York, 1812).

benjamin and lewis were TJ’s grandsons Benjamin F. Randolph and Meriwether Lewis Randolph. The village of blackrock (Black Rock), New York, is now a part of the city of Buffalo.

Index Entries

  • Divers, George; health of search
  • Divers, Martha Walker (George Divers’s wife); health of search
  • food; peas search
  • Gilmer, Mary House (Peachy R. Gilmer’s wife); TJ sends greetings to search
  • Gilmer, Peachy Ridgeway; TJ sends greetings to search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Books & Library; sends books search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Family & Friends; relations with grandchildren search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Health; aging search
  • Paulding, James Kirke; The Diverting History of John Bull and Brother Jonathan search
  • peas; as crop search
  • Randolph, Benjamin Franklin (TJ’s grandson); illness of search
  • Randolph, Meriwether Lewis (TJ’s grandson); TJ on search
  • Randolph, Thomas Mann (1768–1828) (TJ’s son-in-law; Martha Jefferson Randolph’s husband); as colonel in U.S. Army search
  • Rush, Benjamin; death of search
  • The Diverting History of John Bull and Brother Jonathan (Paulding) search
  • Trist, Elizabeth House; friends and family of search
  • Trist, Elizabeth House; letters to search
  • Trist, Elizabeth House; TJ sends books to search