Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Thomas Nelson, 15 January 1781

To Thomas Nelson

Richmond Jany 15, 1781

Dear General

I have never heard a tittle of the Enemy since your information that they were at Sandy Point the day after they left Westover; nor is any thing known at this place as to their subsequent Movements. As this want of intelligence might eventually be fatal, I have ordered an Express to be stationed at Bottom’s Bridge, another at New Kent Court House, a third at Bird’s tavern, a fourth at Williamsburg, a fifth half way between that and Hampton and a sixth at Hampton. It will be easy for Mr. Kemp to throw letters from you wherever situated into this line, and as each Rider will have but 15. Miles out and the same back they may if necessary be put into motion every day. By the same means you may have communications with Hampton. Your Business may probably put it out of your power to write so often, but hope that some of the Gentlemen about you may be able to give us intelligence every day or two.


FC (Vi). Your information: No letter has been found from Nelson to TJ indicating that the enemy “were at Sandy Point the day after they left Westover.” Since they left Westover on 10 Jan. (see TJ to Weedon, 11 Jan.), it seems clear that Nelson must have written to TJ on that day, to which TJ replied in a (missing) letter of 11 Jan.

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