Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Benjamin Rush, 15 August 1790

From Benjamin Rush

Philadelphia 15t August. 1790

Dear Sir

The bearer of this letter Mr. Andrew Brown has applied to me as One among many witnesses of his zeal in promoting the Adoption of the fæderal constitution by means of his paper, and has requested me to add my testimony, of his faithful and meritorious services, to that of his Other friends. His sacrifices to his principles, and to the best interests of our Country have been great. The Acknowledgement and reward of them by government therefore cannot fail of having an useful influence upon public spirit. Mr. Brown will make known to you the nature of the favors which he goes to New York to solicit. I beg leave to refer you to him, and am Dr Sir with the warmest sentiments of respect your most Obedient humble Servant,

Benjn Rush

P.S. I beg your Acceptance of a copy of a small tribute to One of my old friends, and what is much more, One of the friends of Mankind.

RC (DLC); endorsed by TJ as received 26 Aug. 1790 and so recorded in SJL. Enclosure: Rush’s An eulogium in honor of the late Dr. William Cullen, professor of the practice of physic in the University of Edinburgh; delivered before the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, 1790; Sowerby, description begins E. Millicent Sowerby, comp., Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson, 1952–1959, 5 vols. description ends No. 523.

Among the other friends who wrote TJ in behalf of Andrew Brown, publisher of the Federal Gazette and Philadelphia Daily Advertiser, was William Bingham, who said he “could not resist the solicitations of Mr. Brown, to furnish him with a Letter … expressive of the Circumstances on which he founds his Pretensions to your Patronage of his Views.” He added that Brown had served as an officer in the war with “considerable merit” and that as a printer he was “very industrious and correct, and has Supported a daily Paper with considerable Reputation” (RC in DNA: RG 59, PDL; endorsed by TJ as received 26 Aug. 1790 and so recorded in SJL). Brown was given patronage by TJ and later, on presenting TJ with a bound set of the Federal Gazette for the year ending 1 Apr. 1791, he wrote: “To you, Sir, this Gazette owes much of its present reputation; and its proprietor will ever retain a grateful remembrance of your patronage” (Brown to TJ, 6 Dec. 1791; RC in MHi, endorsed by TJ as received 6 Dec. 1791 and so recorded in SJL). Alexander Hamilton wrote to Edward Carrington on 26 May 1792 that this patronage had led Brown’s paper to take an increasingly hostile attitude toward him (cited in Malone, Jefferson, ii, 425 n.). See TJ’s report on Brown’s memorial, 5 Feb. 1791.

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