Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to George Wythe, 12 January 1796

To George Wythe

Monticello Jan. 12. 96.

Th:J. to G: Wythe

I recieved last night your letter on the subject of the laws, and certainly will trust you with any thing I have in the world. A waggon was going off this morning from hence to Varina, and I have exerted myself to send them by that. As I have always intended to have my copies bound up so as to make as complete a set as I could, I thought it best to do this now, before you begin to make use of them. I have therefore arranged them into 7. volumes, and propose to make the revisal of 1794. the 8th. as you will see by the directions to the book binder. I have ordered the box to be delivered to you, merely that you may open it, see it’s contents, and by delivering them to the book binder acquire a right of pressing him to expedite his work. As to all the expences I shall provide for them through the channel of Mr. Randolph. When done, take the whole collection, and keep it till it has answered your purpose. I mean to write you a particular statement of the contents of my collection and it’s deficiencies; but this requires more time than the departure of the waggon allows me. It shall follow by post because I am not without hopes you may have some duplicates from which you can spare copies to fill up the chasms of mine. Adieu affectionately.

P.S. Mr. Bran has formerly done a good deal of binding for me, and would take pains to serve an old customer well.

PrC (DLC).

The directions to the book binder, Thomas Brend of Richmond, were probably enclosed in the box that left in the wagon on 12 Jan. 1796 with the printed laws TJ wished to have bound, but have not been found. For TJ’s amendment to these directions, see the following letter. The binding of the volumes was not completed until 1799 (Virginia Argus, 19 Nov. 1796; Wythe to TJ, 1 Feb. 1797; TJ to Wythe, 29 May 1799).

Statement of the contents of my collection: see enclosure to TJ to Wythe, 16 Jan. 1796 (second letter).

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