Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Thomas Jefferson to Benjamin Rush, 20 April 1812

To Benjamin Rush

Monticello Apr. 20. 12.

Dear Sir

I do not know if you may have noticed in the Newspapers of a year or two ago that Edward Livingston had brought a suit against me for a transaction of the Executive while I was in the administration. the dismission of it has been the occasion of publishing the inclosed pamphlet, which is sent to you, not to be read, for there is nothing enticing for you1 in it, but as a tribute of respect & friendship. you have moreover a son whose familiarity with the subject may render a glance of it amusing to him.

The sending a copy of this to mr Adams, as well as the answering some enquiries of his last letter, furnishes occasion for my writing to him a third time. as you have taken a pleasure in watering the tree of conciliation which your friendship for us both planted, I inclose to you my letter to him unsealed for perusal, that you may see how we come on. when read, be pleased to stick a wafer in it and recommit it to the post office. I salute you with constant attachment and respect.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (DLC); at foot of text: “Dr Rush”; endorsed by TJ. Enclosures: (1) Jefferson, Proceedings description begins Thomas Jefferson, The Proceedings of the Government of the United States, in maintaining The Public Right to the Beach of the Missisipi, Adjacent to New-Orleans, against the Intrusion of Edward Livingston. prepared for the use of counsel, by Thomas Jefferson, New York, 1812; Sowerby, nos. 3501, 3508; Poor, Jefferson’s Library, 10 (no. 604) description ends . (2) TJ to John Adams, 20 Apr. 1812.

Rush did indeed share TJ’s pamphlet on the batture controversy with his son. Richard Rush soon thanked his father, noting that TJ’s essay “discovers wonderful research in him as a mere lawyer and is, unquestionably, as I think, a correct argument. There is more temper in it than is compatible with true dignity, and, unavoidably however, too much minuteness for style. I will acknowledge the receipt of it to him. among other peculiarities of orthography he spells knowledge—knolege” (Richard Rush to Benjamin Rush, 16 May 1812 [PPL: Benjamin Rush Papers, on deposit PHi]).

1Preceding two words interlined.

Index Entries

  • Adams, John; resumes correspondence with TJ search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Family & Friends; relations with J. Adams search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Writings; The Proceedings of the Government of the United States, in maintaining the Public Right to the Beach of the Missisipi, Adjacent to New-Orleans, against the Intrusion of Edward Livingston search
  • Rush, Benjamin; and resumption of correspondence between TJ and J. Adams search
  • Rush, Benjamin; letters to search
  • Rush, Benjamin; TJ sends batture pamphlet to search
  • Rush, Richard; and TJ’s batture pamphlet search
  • The Proceedings of the Government of the United States, in maintaining the Public Right to the Beach of the Missisipi, Adjacent to New-Orleans, against the Intrusion of Edward Livingston (Thomas Jefferson); TJ distributes remaining copies search