Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Thomas Jefferson to John Wayles Eppes, 21 April 1810

To John Wayles Eppes

Monticello Apr. 21. 10.

Dear Sir

I found here your letter of the 2d on my return from a three weeks visit to Bedford: and as I see by a resolution of Congress that they are to adjourn on the 23d I shall direct the present to Eppington where it may meet you on your passage to Carolina. mr Thweatt is to let me know when I am to set out for Richmond. he says it will be in May & perhaps early. this however you can learn from him. my principal compensation for the journey is the visit to my friends at Eppington from which your absence would be a great deduction: for be assured that no circumstances on earth will ever lessen my affection for you, or my regret that any should exist which may affect the frequency of my meetings with you. but here I must brood over my grief in silence. the company of my dear Francis has been a great comfort to me this winter; I shall restore him to you at Eppington, in fine health I hope, and not less advanced in the first1 elements of education than might be expected. Patsy has the whole merit of this as her attentions to him have been the same as to her own.

Your letter gave me the first intimation that an accomodation with England was expected. I rejoice at it; for she is the only nation from which serious injury is to be apprehended. this may put us under the ban of the testy emperor, that spoiled child of fortune, and it is true that if excluded from the continent our trade to England will be of no value. but I would rather suffer in interest than fail in good faith. we are neutrals, & have been honestly so. we have declared we would meet either or both parties in just accomodation, and if either holds off, it is her fault not ours. altho’ connected with England in peace, I hope we shall be so with the other party in principle, and that our accomodation will involve no sacrifice of the freedom of the seas. for this however I can safely trust to the present administration, as well as the republican majority in Congress. I salute yourself & mrs Eppes, both the elder & younger with sincere & affectionate esteem & respect.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (Mrs. James F. Jordan, Brookeville, Md., 1959); endorsed by TJ.

Congress resolved on 7 Apr. to adjourn on 23 Apr., but did not actually do so until 1 May 1810 (JS description begins Journal of the Senate of the United States description ends , 4:479, 514). Napoleon was the testy emperor.

1Word interlined.

Index Entries

  • Congress, U.S.; adjourns search
  • education; at Monticello search
  • Eppes, Elizabeth Wayles (TJ’s sister-in-law; John Wayles Eppes’s mother); TJ sends greetings to search
  • Eppes, Francis Wayles (TJ’s grandson); education of, at Monticello search
  • Eppes, Francis Wayles (TJ’s grandson); TJ’s relationship with search
  • Eppes, John Wayles (TJ’s son-in-law); letters to search
  • Eppes, John Wayles (TJ’s son-in-law); TJ on search
  • Eppes, John Wayles (TJ’s son-in-law); travels to N.C. search
  • Eppes, Martha Burke Jones (John Wayles Eppes’s second wife); TJ sends greetings to search
  • Eppington (Eppes’s Chesterfield Co. estate); TJ directs letter to search
  • Gilliam v. Fleming; chancery case search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Family & Friends; friendship with E. Eppes search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Family & Friends; relations with grandchildren search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Opinions on; British government search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Opinions on; Napoleon search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Travels; plans visit to Richmond search
  • Monticello (TJ’s estate); schooling at search
  • Napoleon I, emperor of France; TJ on search
  • Thweatt, Archibald; and Gilliam v. Fleming search