Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Henry Remsen, 17 June 1797

To Henry Remsen

Philadelphia June 17. 1797.

Dear Sir

It is so long since I have made any paiment for the New York papers that I am entirely ignorant what my arrears are, and I have been so much engaged here hitherto that I have failed to make enquiry of you. Pray be so good as to let me know, and to do it immediately as I shall not be here after the 23d. inst. If you could take the trouble of enquiring of Mr. Freneau also what I owe him you will oblige me, and I will remit all together.—I am sorry nothing could be effected on the subject you once wrote me on. My will was not wanting, but it depended on others.—We have disagreeable news as to the dispositions of the French directory. Pray God it may all blow over and give us time to place our foreign affairs under safer arrangements for the future. Not having entire confidence in the post office, I think it safer for the inclosed to be put under your cover and recommended to your care. I am with constant esteem Dr. Sir Your friend & servt

Th: Jefferson

RC (CtY); at foot of text: “Mr. Henry Remsen.” Enclosure: probably TJ to Aaron Burr, 17 June 1797.

For TJ’s arrangement with Remsen for New York papers, especially Greenleaf’s New York Journal, & Patriotic Register, see TJ to Remsen, 17 Dec. 1795. TJ remitted $20.67 to Remsen, which probably included payment for The Time Piece, and Literary Companion, a newspaper established in New York in March 1797 by Philip Freneau (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, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , ii, 964, 1014). See Sowerby, description begins E. Millicent Sowerby, comp., Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson, Washington, D.C., 1952–59, 5 vols. description ends Nos. 541 and 560. A letter from Remsen to TJ of 20 June 1797, recorded in SJL as received two days later, has not been found, and one from TJ to Remsen of 28 June 1797 is also missing. A letter from Freneau to TJ of 21 June 1797, which according to SJL was received the following day, has not been found.

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