Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Gouverneur Morris, 24 April 1793

To Gouverneur Morris

Philadelphia Apr. 24. 1793.

Dear Sir

Mr. Robert Leslie a watchmaker of this city goes to establish himself at London. As his curiosity may lead him to Paris, I take the liberty of asking your patronage of him, so far as may be necessary to enable him to see what may be serviceable to him in his way. He is without exception one of the greatest mechanics I have ever known in any country, he is modest, and of pure integrity, and will fully merit any service you can render him. The rod-pendulum, an entire new method of making the repeating apparatus of a watch, with one eigth of the peices heretofore used, two different constructions of marine clocks which he carries with him, are some of many inventions of his. I am with great respect & esteem Dr Sir your friend & servt

Th: Jefferson

PrC (DLC); at foot of text: “Mr. G. Morris.” Tr (DLC); 19th-century copy.

Three days later TJ drew an order on the Bank of the United States for $115.30 to pay Robert Leslie for the “great clock” and for cleaning a small one (MB description begins James A. Bear, Jr., and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, Princeton, forthcoming as part of The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 27 Apr. 1793). The order, signed and dated 27 Apr. 1793 by TJ, is in the Riggs Historical Collection, Riggs National Bank, Washington, D.C.

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