Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Thomas Jefferson to Jesse Perry, 20 January 1810

To Jesse Perry

Monticello Jan. 20. 1810.

Sir

Mr Watkins, who superintended & worked with my out-carpenters, has left me this year. he was employed in such carpenter’s work as the plantations required, and I gave him 150. Dollars a year, his provisions & a house to live in. I do not know on what footing you are at present employed with your brother, & certainly do not mean to break in on any arrangement of his with you. but if it should be agreeable to you both that you should come & take mr Watkins’s place, I shall be glad to employ you on the same terms, and to recieve you here with as little delay as possible. I should expect a first engagement for one year, to be continued as long as agreeable to both parties. I shall be glad to recieve an answer by mr Randolph on his return, & am Sir

Your humble servt

Th: Jefferson

PoC (MHi); at foot of text: “Mr Jesse Perry”; endorsed by TJ.

Jesse Perry, a brother of John M. and Reuben Perry, evidently declined TJ’s offer (K. Edward Lay, “Charlottesville’s Architectural Legacy,” MACH description begins Magazine of Albemarle County History, 1940– description ends 46 [1988]: 40; MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 2:1027).

TJ hired Elisha watkins in the summer of 1808 to supervise carpentry work on his Albemarle County plantations (TJ to Watkins, 22 Aug. 1808, and Directions for Watkins, 27 Sept. 1808 [MHi]; MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 2:1249).

Index Entries

  • Monticello (TJ’s estate); carpentry supervisors at search
  • Perry, Jesse; identified search
  • Perry, Jesse; letters to search
  • Perry, Jesse; TJ seeks to hire search
  • Perry, John M.; family of search
  • Perry, Reuben; family of search
  • Randolph, Thomas Mann (1768–1828) (TJ’s son-in-law; Martha Jefferson Randolph’s husband); mentioned search
  • Watkins, Elisha search