Thomas Jefferson Papers
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To Thomas Jefferson from Matthew Lyon, 3 March 1801

From Matthew Lyon

Washington March 3d. 1801

Sir

Both the last times I had the pleasure of speaking with you on the Subject of appointments in Vermont it sliped my mind to Mention the US Attorney in that District, the present Attorney is Charles Marsh a Violent Federalist. I have no particular cause of complaint against him, but several friends have wrote me wishing him to be displaced. we have but two Respectable Republican Lawyers in the State one is Jonathan Robinson brother to the Governor & the other is David Fay a Nephew of his, The latter is recomended to me by the former the Change is univesally expected & wished, by the Repub [licans.] Fay is a man of very Respectable Tallents & quite deserveing the place, he lives in Bennington—

The Supervisor of the District lives in Bennington also he is a Violent Federalist but his daughter is married to a Son of Governor Robinson or there is such family Connections that he will not be complained of, he is however a very honest man—

The officer of the Customs at Burlington Vt is a petulant, Vain, busy Aristocrat by the name of Russel, he ought to be displaced but I have no one on my mind to recomend at present— I am Sir with great respect

your humble Servt

M Lyon

RC (DNA: RG 59, LAR); torn; at foot of text: “Mr Jefferson”; endorsed by TJ as received 3 Mch. and so recorded in SJL; also endorsed by TJ: “Charles Marsh. Atty to be removed. Jonathan Robinson David Fay.”

On 5 Mch. TJ appointed David Fay to replace Charles Marsh as U.S. attorney for Vermont. Fay was the nephew of Moses Robinson who in 1762 had married Mary Fay, daughter of Stephen Fay and sister of Joseph Fay (Abby Maria Hemenway and others, eds., Vermont Historical Gazetteer, 5 vols. [Burlington, Vt., 1868–91], 1:171–2; Appendix I, List 3). Nathaniel Brush, appointed supervisor of the revenue for the Vermont district in late 1794, continued in the position during TJ’s presidency. Brush’s daughter was married to Moses Robinson’s third son Samuel (Hemenway, ed., Vermont Historical Gazetteer, 1:169; JEP description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States… to the Termination of the Nineteenth Congress, Washington, D.C., 1828, 3 vols. description ends , 1:163–4; Gallatin, Papers description begins Carl E. Prince and Helene E. Fineman, eds., The Papers of Albert Gallatin, microfilm edition in 46 reels, Philadelphia, 1969, and Supplement, Barbara B. Oberg, ed., reels 47–51, Wilmington, Del., 1985 description ends , 22:256–8).

In February 1803 Jabez Penniman became collector of customs for Vermont on Lake Champlain in place of David Russell who was removed (JEP description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States… to the Termination of the Nineteenth Congress, Washington, D.C., 1828, 3 vols. description ends , 1:441).

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