Thomas Jefferson Papers
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Thomas Jefferson to Randolph Jefferson, 8 August 1813

To Randolph Jefferson

Monticello Aug. 8. 13.

Dear brother

Your letter of yesterday found me unprovided with the sum you desired; but I have been able to borrow it among our merchants who are not much better off than others, all business being at a stand. we are experiencing the most calamitous year known since 1755. the ground has been wet but once since the 14th of April. my wheat yielded but a third of an ordinary crop, about treble the seed. of 230. acres of corn, about 15. acres may make 2. or 3. barrels to the acre; and about 215. acres will not produce a single ear; not half of it will tossil, a great deal not 2. feet high. we usually make about 7. or 800. barrels; we shall certainly not make above 30. I shall be obliged to drive all my stock to Bedford to be wintered, and to buy 400. barrels of corn for bread for my people.

Your girl comes on tolerably well. she was some time learning to rove, for without good roving there cannot be good spinning. she has been sometime spinning, and by the time of my return from Bedford, when the machine will be carried to you, she will be able to spin by herself. the time of my going is yet unfixed: it may be within a week, or not within 2. or 3. weeks. my route is equally uncertain; but if I do not go by Snowden I will certainly return by it. present my respects to my sister. ever affectionately yours

Th: Jefferson

P.S. do not think of selling your wheat till the winter drives off the blockading ships when it will bring a good price.

PoC (ViU: TJP-CC); postscript added in a different ink; at foot of text: “Randolph Jefferson esq.”; endorsed by TJ.

tossil: “tassel.” The girl was Randolph Jefferson’s slave Fanny. my sister: Randolph Jefferson’s wife, Mitchie B. Pryor Jefferson.

On this date TJ recorded that he had “Inclosed to my brother 40.D. of which he asks a loan” (MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 2:1292).

Index Entries

  • Chesapeake Bay; British blockade of search
  • corn; effect of weather on search
  • corn; for slaves search
  • Fanny (R. Jefferson’s slave); trained to spin search
  • Jefferson, Mitchie Ballow Pryor (TJ’s sister-in-law; Randolph Jefferson’s second wife); TJ sends greetings to search
  • Jefferson, Randolph (TJ’s brother); borrows money from TJ search
  • Jefferson, Randolph (TJ’s brother); letters to search
  • Jefferson, Randolph (TJ’s brother); slaves of search
  • Jefferson, Randolph (TJ’s brother); spinning jenny for search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Business & Financial Affairs; loans requested of search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Family & Friends; relations with R. Jefferson search
  • machines; spinning jenny search
  • Monticello (TJ’s estate); wheat crop at search
  • Poplar Forest (TJ’s Bedford Co. estate); livestock at search
  • Poplar Forest (TJ’s Bedford Co. estate); TJ plans visit to search
  • slaves; corn for search
  • slaves; trained to spin search
  • Snowden (R. Jefferson’s Buckingham Co. estate); TJ plans visit to search
  • weather; drought search
  • wheat; at Monticello search
  • wheat; effect of weather on search