To Thomas Jefferson
Treasury Department March 6th 1792
In consequence of the application of Mr Andw. Ellicot,1 I have the honor to transmit you the official copy of the Survey of the tract of Land purchased by the State of Pennsylvania from the United States.2
As I conceive this as an original paper filed of record in this office in the Execution of an Act of the Legislature,3 I must ask the favor of your returning it to the Treasury as soon as you shall have caused a copy of it to be made.
I have the honor to be very respectfully4 Sir, Your most obedt. Servant
The Secretary of State
LS, Thomas Jefferson Papers, Library of Congress.
1. In the seventeen-eighties Andrew Ellicott, a surveyor and mathematician, had several commissions for running the western and northern boundaries of Pennsylvania. Between 1791 and 1793 he conducted the survey of the ten-mile square that was to become the District of Columbia.
2. The land which Pennsylvania purchased from the United States was known as the Erie Triangle. Bounded on the east by New York and on the northwest by Lake Erie, the section contained more than two hundred thousand acres. It had been ceded to the United States by New York and Massachusetts in the seventeen-eighties. During the summer of 1788 negotiations between the Board of Treasury and the state of Pennsylvania resulted in a contract for the purchase of the Erie Triangle, and the contract was approved by Congress on September 4, 1788 (JCC description begins Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789 (Washington, 1904–1937). description ends , XXXIV, 499–500).
3. “An Act for carrying into effect a Contract between the United States and the State of Pennsylvania” (1 Stat. description begins The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America (Boston, 1845). description ends 229 [January 3, 1792]).
4. The words “very respectfully” are in H’s handwriting.