Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from George Washington, 18 September 1787

From George Washington

Philadelphia Sept. 18th. 1787.

Dear Sir

Yesterday put an end to the business of the Fœdral Convention. Inclosed is a copy of the Constitution, by it agreed to. Not doubting but that you have participated in the general anxiety which has agitated the minds of your Countrymen on this interesting occasion, I shall be excused I am certain for this endeavor to relieve you from it, especially when I assure you of the sincere regard and esteem with which I have the honor to be Dr. Sir Yr. Most Obedt and Very Hble Servant,

G. Washington

FC (DLC: Washington Papers). Re- corded in SJL as received 19 Dec. 1787. Enclosure: A copy of the official edition of the final report of the Federal Convention, consisting of (1) the text of the proposed Constitution; (2) the resolution of the Convention; and (3) the letter from Washington to the president of Congress transmitting the report. On 17 Sep. 1787 Dunlap and Claypoole printed 500 copies of this edition, but, although TJ received other copies of this and other editions from American correspondents, no copy has been found among the books left by him (communication of E. Millicent Sowerby to the Editors, 18 Jan. 1954), nor has the Editors’ canvas of copies preserved in the Library of Congress and other repositories turned up any text of this edition definitely identifiable as having been TJ’s. Copies owned by Washington, Madison, and Pendleton are in the Library of Congress (JCC description begins Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, ed. W. C. Ford and others, Washington, 1904–1937 description ends , xxxiii, 760, No. 592).

On this same date Washington sent Lafayette a copy of the report of the Convention, saying: “It is the production of four months deliberation. It is now a child of fortune, to be fostered by some and buffeted by others” (Writings, ed. Fitzpatrick, xxix, 276–7; see also Lafayette to TJ, 25 Dec. 1787).

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