Thomas Jefferson Papers
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From Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, [3 May 1790]

To George Washington

[3 May 1790]

A letter is received from Mr. Dumas, begun Dec. 4 and ending Jan. 26. The only interesting passage is the following:

‘I have the satisfaction to be able to testify that the American funds are in great favor with the monied men of this country. I have seen them sell from one to another the obligations of the Congress of the first loan at 100. ¾ per cent; those of the last of 1788. at 99 to 100. those of the Amsterdam negotiation of the Liquidated debt at 99½ to 102. per cent.’

RC (DNA: RG 59, MLR); in TJ’s hand, undated and unsigned; addressed: “The President of the United States” docketed by clerk: “File May 3. 1790,” which is the date Dumas’ letter was received.

Dumas’ dispatch No. 61 to “Son Excellence Mr. Ministre d’Etat” was begun and continued on 2, 4, 5 Dec. 1789 and 26 Jan. 1790. It reported affairs much as in his letter of 8–21 Nov. 1789, stated that he had been ill, and announced an expenditure of 236 florins for gazettes, postage, and repairs to his house (RC and Dupl in DNA: RG 59, PCC No.93; the passage quoted by TJ occurs in that part dated 26 Jan. 1790; recorded in SJL as received 3 May 1790). The informality of TJ’s memorandum, the absence of date, salutation, and signature, the error made in the initial date of Dumas’ letter, and the uneven handwriting all testify to the onslaught of his severe headache, which began on 1 May 1790 (TJ to Short, 27 May 1790).

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