James Madison Papers
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To James Madison from Mathew Carey, 5 June 1824

From Mathew Carey

Philada June 5. 1824

Dear Sir,

You will, I doubt not, have the goodness to pardon the liberty I take, in the present letter, from the motives which lead to it, to serve a valuable citizen, & to promote the utility of some one of the great public institutions in your state, devoted to education on a large scale.

Mr. John Saunderson,1 of this city, whom I regard as eminently qualified for a professorship of the learned languages, keeps a seminary for young people here, in which he has had the most brilliant success. But from the great numbers engaged in that department here, his support is barely sufficient for the maintenance of his family, which is very large, having six or seven children. Moreover it is a sphere of action not at all suited to his talents & merits.

Should any opportunity of promotion offer, I request you will bear him in mind—& authorise suitable persons here to make him undergo an examination, in order to ascertain his qualifications. I remain, respectfully Your obt. hble. servt.

Mathew Carey

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1John Sanderson (1783–1844) was a printer, writer, and schoolteacher, who with his brother Joseph M. Sanderson, wrote and published the first two volumes of the nine-volume Biography of the Signers to the Declaration of Independence (1820–27). He was principal and part owner of Carré and Sanderson’s Seminary in Philadelphia, and then taught school at Pottsville, Pennsylvania, from 1831 until 1835, when he traveled to France for his health and to gather material for his book, The American in Paris (1838). He returned to the United States in 1836 and was professor of classics at the Central High School in Philadelphia until his death (Edward Carpenter and Louis Henry Carpenter, comps., Samuel Carpenter and his Descendants [Philadelphia, 1912], 99; PJM-RS description begins David B. Mattern et al., eds., The Papers of James Madison: Retirement Series (3 vols. to date; Charlottesville, Va., 2009–). description ends , 2:176 nn. 1–2; Baltimore Patriot & Mercantile Advertiser, 22 Sept. 1819; History of Schuylkill County, Pa.: With Illustrations and Biographical Sketches of Some of Its Prominent Men and Pioneers [New York, 1881], 288).

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