Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Martha A. C. Lewis, Lucy B. Lewis, and Ann M. Lewis to Thomas Jefferson, 17 September 1810

From Martha A. C. Lewis, Lucy B. Lewis, and Ann M. Lewis

17 Sept 1810 Livingston County Kente

Dear Uncle

no doubt You have before this, heard of the iraparable loss we have experianced, in the death of the best of mothers, and sister, which event took place on the twenty Sixth day, of last may, she graguley waisted away with little or no pain, for eighteen months enteirly sensable to here last1 moments, quite resind to meat the aughfull fate, her remains was intered the twenty Eigth on a high immenence, in view of that majestick river the Ohio. permit us2 now Sir, to give a detail of our present, & future prospects, when my father & fameley remoovd to the western countra, it was truely under imberast circomstances, we could bring no property that we could call our own, three or four old domesticks, were convaid with three beds and ferneture &c by Mr peyton on hier, to be paid annually, subject to his order when called for, both the annual hier and3 the Negros, and ferneture, a call has not as yet been for either, we apprehend the death of our dear Mother may bring about some change, that the above mentioned property4 may be calld for, in the event of a call being made, we should be in a very destrest situation, no seport left but our own labour, except what our brothers could do for us, which would not Seport us, even tolarable, the loss of our old domesticks, would be almost equal to the loss of Our dear Mothr, haveing been allways with them from children, my father has rote to Mr Peyton, on the subject what lenety will be shone is all conjectural, we beg my dear5 Uncle for the intercession of Yourself, uncle Randolph, Mr Randolph, Mr S. Carr. & D Carr. and all our dear connections, to use what influanc they can by indeavering with Mr Peyton, not to distres us, any assistance that our dear relations can be of in any shape will be very exceptable, in our distrest situation, should we not succeed in our wish we shall have to pine out our days be Them6 few or many with the mallencolley reflection, that to be onece in affluance, is truly a misfortune, when revirst. and these pore hands of ours been from our infanceyacustomed7 to drudgrey, our feelings dear Uncle, is much injured at the thought of injuring yours, and our dear relations, necssity alone is we8 hope a suffitiant Apolege for any uneasey sencations, this rilation of our situation may have, or give, to any of our friend. be so good, sir, to give us an Answer Present our most respectful love to aunt Carr. Mrs Randolp cousin polle carr and for You will pleas to except our Best wises, aduu.

Martha C Lewis
Lucy B Lewis
Ann M Lewis

RC (on deposit ViU: TJP); in Charles L. Lewis’s hand, signed by the Lewis sisters; conjoined with next letter printed below and sharing address and endorsement described there.

Martha A. C. Lewis (ca. 1788–1850) married Daniel Monroe in 1815 and moved to New Orleans after 1817. Lucy B. Lewis (1789–1864) was born at Buck Island and married Washington A. Griffin in 1813 before settling near Shelbyville, Kentucky. About 1830 she and her family moved to New Albany, Indiana. Ann Marks Lewis eventually moved in with her sister Martha in New Orleans (Merrow Egerton Sorley, Lewis of Warner Hall: The History of a Family [1935; repr. 1991], 365, 370; Merrill, Jefferson’s Nephews description begins Boynton Merrill Jr., Jefferson’s Nephews: A Frontier Tragedy, 1976 description ends , esp. 35, 339, 342, 347; McMillan family Bible [photocopy in Lewis Family file, ViCMRL]).

The signatories were TJ’s nieces through his sister Lucy Jefferson Lewis (1752–1810), Charles L. Lewis’s wife.

1Word interlined.

2Word interlined.

3Word interlined in place of “or.”

4Word interlined.

5Word interlined.

6Word interlined in place of “the.”

7Thus in manuscript; “unaccustomed” was probably intended.

8Word interlined in place of “I.”

Index Entries

  • Carr, Dabney (1773–1837) (TJ’s nephew); and Lewis family search
  • Carr, Martha Jefferson (TJ’s sister); greetings sent to search
  • Carr, Polly (Mary) search
  • Carr, Samuel (TJ’s nephew); and Lewis family search
  • Griffin, Washington A. search
  • Jefferson, Randolph (TJ’s brother); and Lewis relatives search
  • Lewis, Ann Marks (TJ’s niece); financial situation of search
  • Lewis, Ann Marks (TJ’s niece); identified search
  • Lewis, Ann Marks (TJ’s niece); letters from search
  • Lewis, Charles Lilburne (TJ’s brother-in-law); financial situation of search
  • Lewis, Lillburne (TJ’s nephew); family of search
  • Lewis, Lucy B. (TJ’s niece); financial situation of search
  • Lewis, Lucy B. (TJ’s niece); identified search
  • Lewis, Lucy B. (TJ’s niece); letters from search
  • Lewis, Lucy Jefferson (TJ’s sister; Charles Lilburne Lewis’s wife); death of search
  • Lewis, Lucy Jefferson (TJ’s sister; Charles Lilburne Lewis’s wife); family of search
  • Lewis, Randolph (TJ’s nephew); family of search
  • Monroe, Daniel search
  • Monroe, Martha Amanda Carr Lewis (TJ’s niece; Daniel Monroe’s wife); financial situation of search
  • Monroe, Martha Amanda Carr Lewis (TJ’s niece; Daniel Monroe’s wife); identified search
  • Monroe, Martha Amanda Carr Lewis (TJ’s niece; Daniel Monroe’s wife); letters from search
  • Peyton, Craven; and Lewis family search
  • Randolph, Martha Jefferson (Patsy; TJ’s daughter; Thomas Mann Randolph’s wife); greetings to search
  • Randolph, Thomas Mann (1768–1828) (TJ’s son-in-law; Martha Jefferson Randolph’s husband); and Lewis family search
  • women; letters from; Lewis sisters search