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Thomas Jefferson to Andrew Moore, 2 October 1813

To Andrew Moore

Monticello Oct. 2. 13.

Dear Sir

I take the liberty of troubling you on behalf of a Capt Joseph Millar, stationed at Charlottesville as an Alien; and will state his case as represented to me, and as believed by me. his father & mother came over about 1768. to Maryland to settle there. he was born there soon after their arrival, and the father dying, the mother thought it safest to return to her friends in Ireland where this son was brought up. he took to the seafaring business which he has followed all his life, except 4. years that he was engaged in a brewery in England. his voyages have been chiefly between England, the US. and the Baltic. a brother of his settled in Norfolk was a citizen1 and died there not long since, possessed of 9 houses, and a plantation. the Capt hearing of it, left England the 1st of Nov. last to come and look after the property. he says it had been reported then in Liverpool, but was not believed that we had declared war. he had a passage of 105. days & therefore did not arrive in the Chesapeak till Feb. 8. was taken possession of by the English squadron, detained 10. days, ordered back, and attempting to get into the Delaware was ship wrecked. this is his case, and his birth in Maryland, as soon as he can get the proofs, will establish him a citizen. he asks permission to go in the mean time, gather up his property and put it into a course of being taken care of. his conduct here has been such as to acquire the esteem of all the neighbors insomuch that he is the inmate of all their houses & is looking out for a piece of land to settle here, never intending to leave the state again. in his principles he is as much an Anti-Anglican, and as fully with us in feelings as any one of us, and I am not afraid to make myself answerable that he shall have no communication with the British during the stay in Norfolk with which you may be so good as to indulge him. he thinks he could not arrange his affairs there in less than from a fortnight to a month, so as to take up his final residence here. after he shall have recieved the proofs of his birth in Maryland, he is advised to proceed to establish his citizenship by taking out a Habeas-corpus, returnable before some federal judge, who may decide on it. the answer which you may be pleased to give, or the formal permission will probably come more certainly if directed to me; and he is anxious to set out immediately to look to his affairs. for coming from the north to Norfolk by water, he was permitted to stay there only two days to get his linen washed, & advised to keep within doors, so that he did not even see his property while there. having become intimate in my family, and much with us, I feel an interest for his success, and have the most perfect confidence in his honesty and sincere dispositions towards our country, and shall therefore be gratified by any indulgence which your duty may permit you to extend to him; and I avail myself with pleasure of this opportunity of assuring you of my great & friendly esteem & respect.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (DLC); at foot of first page: “General Moore”; endorsed by TJ.

Andrew Moore (ca. 1748–1821), attorney and public official, was born near Staunton and educated at Augusta Academy (later Washington and Lee University). After studying law under George Wythe in Williamsburg, he was admitted to the bar in 1774 and established a legal practice in Augusta County. Moore took part in Lord Dunmore’s War in 1774. During the Revolutionary War he served in the 9th Virginia Regiment of the Continental army, 1776–78, fighting at the Battle of Saratoga and rising from lieutenant to captain. Moore represented Rockbridge County in the Virginia House of Delegates, 1780–83, 1785–88, and 1799–1800, and in the 1788 state convention that ratified the new United States Constitution, which he supported. He was a member of the United States House of Representatives, 1789–97 and 1804, the Senate of Virginia, 1800–01, and the United States Senate, 1804–09. During his long political career Moore proved to be a staunch Republican and a strong supporter of James Madison. He favored the disestablishment of the Episcopal Church in Virginia and opposed excise taxes, the Bank of the United States, and the Alien and Sedition Acts. By TJ’s appointment, he was federal marshal for the Western District of Virginia from 1801 until it was merged into one statewide district the following year. Madison appointed him federal marshal for the Virginia District in 1810 and he held that position until shortly before his death. Moore was also a general in the state militia and a trustee of his alma mater, 1782–1821 (ANB description begins John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes, eds., American National Biography, 1999, 24 vols. description ends ; DAB description begins Allen Johnson and Dumas Malone, eds., Dictionary of American Biography, 1928–36, 20 vols. description ends ; Charles W. Turner, “Andrew Moore—First U. S. Senator from West of the Blue Ridge Mountains,” Filson Club History Quarterly 28 [1954]: 354–70; Heitman, Continental Army description begins Francis B. Heitman, comp., Historical Register of Officers of the Continental Army during the War of the Revolution, April, 1775, to December, 1783, rev. ed., 1914 description ends , 398; Leonard, General Assembly description begins Cynthia Miller Leonard, comp., The General Assembly of Virginia, July 30, 1619–January 11, 1978: A Bicentennial Register of Members, 1978 description ends ; PTJ description begins Julian P. Boyd, Charles T. Cullen, John Catanzariti, Barbara B. Oberg, and others, eds., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1950– , 34 vols. description ends , 2:549n, 32:360n; JEP description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States description ends , 1:402, 405, 2:156, 3:144, 153 [6, 26 Jan. 1802, 10, 11 Dec. 1810, 27 Nov., 9 Dec. 1818]; Joseph A. Waddell, Annals of Augusta County, Virginia [1902; repr. 1958], 232–3; Richmond Enquirer, 5 June 1821).

Joseph Miller (1776–1824), brewer, was born in Chestertown, Maryland, but his widowed mother carried him back to Ireland as an infant. During the years that followed he worked as a sea captain and in a London brewery. Miller decided to return to America after learning that a naturalized American half brother of his had died in Norfolk in November 1809 and left him property there. He left England in the autumn of 1812 but was delayed repeatedly by French and English vessels patrolling the Atlantic. Miller finally arrived in Norfolk early in April 1813 but was ordered inland and went to Albemarle County, where he struck up a friendship with TJ, helped establish a brewery at Monticello, and taught the former president’s slave Peter Hemmings how to malt and brew beer. With TJ’s assistance Miller returned to Norfolk in the autumn of 1813, but he visited Monticello several times thereafter. At the end of the War of 1812 Miller confirmed his American citizenship, established himself as a brewer in Norfolk, corresponded with TJ until at least 1819, and occasionally sent him corks for his beer bottles (Moore to TJ, 8 Oct. 1813; Petition from Joseph Miller to the Virginia General Assembly, 15 Dec. 1815; TJ to James Barbour, 11 May 1821; Joseph Miller Jr. to TJ, 20 Aug. 1825; Ann Lucas, The Philosophy of Making Beer [1995; keepsake for Spring Dinner at Monticello, 12 Apr. 1995]; 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 , 2:1318–9n, 1331, 1351).

Under the general authority of a 1798 Alien Act, Moore as federal marshal for Virginia was required to move any enemy alien found near the coast to a point at least forty miles from tidewater. He also had the authority to grant individuals monthly permits waiving this requirement (U.S. Statutes at Large description begins Richard Peters, ed., The Public Statutes at Large of the United States … 1789 to March 3, 1845, 1845–67, 8 vols. description ends , 1:577–8; New York Western Star, and Harp of Erin, 6 Mar. 1813).

1Preceding three words interlined.

Index Entries

  • Alien and Sedition Acts search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Correspondence; letters of application and recommendation from search
  • Miller, Joseph; and Norfolk property search
  • Miller, Joseph; as brewer search
  • Miller, Joseph; citizenship of search
  • Miller, Joseph; identified search
  • Miller, Joseph; TJ intercedes for search
  • Moore, Andrew; as federal marshal for Va. district search
  • Moore, Andrew; identified search
  • Moore, Andrew; letters to search
  • Norfolk, Va.; and War of1812 search