Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Resolutions for an Answer to Governor Botetourt’s Speech, 8 May 1769

Resolutions for an Answer to Governor Botetourt’s Speech

[8 May 1769]

Resolved, Nemine contradicente, That a most humble and dutiful Address be presented to his Excellency the Governor, returning Thanks for his very affectionate Speech at the Opening of this Session;

Expressing our firm Attachment to his Majesty’s sacred Person and Government, and a lively Sense of his Royal Favour, manifested by frequent Approbations of our former Conduct; by extending his Paternal Regard to all his Subjects however remote; and, by his gracious Purpose, that our Chief Governor shall, in future, reside among us;

Declaring, that we esteem, as a peculiar Mark of Attention to our Happiness, the Appointment of his Lordship to preside over this Colony; and, that his Virtues and Abilities, manifested ever since his Arrival here, are to us the firmest Assurance, that Wisdom and Benevolence will distinguish his Administration;

Joining, in Congratulations on the Birth of another Princess, and the happy Restoration of her Majesty’s Health;

Assuring his Excellency, that we shall, with Candour, proceed to the important Business on which we are met in General Assembly; and that, if in the Course of our Deliberations, any Matters shall arise, which may in any way affect the Interests of Great-Britain, these shall ever be discussed on this ruling Principle, that her Interests, and Ours, are inseparably the same: And, finally, offering our Prayers, that Providence, and the Royal Pleasure, may long continue his Lordship the happy Ruler of a free and an happy People.

MS not located. Text from Journals of the House of Burgesses, 1766–1769, Richmond, 1906, p. 189.

This, the first of TJ’s state papers, is purely ceremonial in nature and was prepared by him on the first day of the first session of the House of Burgesses in which he sat as a member for Albemarle co. For his own account of the circumstances, see TJ to William Wirt, 5 Aug. 1815. He prepared a draft address (now missing) which was objected to by Robert Carter Nicholas. The amplified version by Nicholas, which was accepted, is printed in JHB description begins Journals of the House of Burgesses of Virginia, 1619–1776, Richmond, 1905–1915 description ends , 1766–1769, p. 199–200.

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