Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Mathew Carey, 2 April 1798

To Mathew Carey

Apr. 2. 98.

Th: Jefferson presents his compliments to mr Matthew Cary, & will be obliged to him if he can inform him how to address a letter to his brother John Carey in London, as he does not know the street, number &c where he would be found.

RC (NN); addressed: “Mr. Matthew Carey 118. Market street.” Not recorded in SJL.

According to SJL on 2 Apr. 1798 TJ wrote a letter to John Carey “at mr. Hamilton’s Falcon court Fleet street,” which has not been found. John Carey wrote letters to TJ on 6and 10 June 1797, which according to SJL were received from London on 8 Sep., with duplicates or a second set received on 13 Dec. 1797, none of which has been found. Letters from Carey to TJ of 21 May and 11and 25 June 1798, the first being recorded in SJL as received 4 Sep. and the June letters on 25 Oct. 1798, are also missing.

On 21 May 1798 John Carey also wrote Philadelphia bookseller Henry Rice, who had charge of the sale of The System of Short-Hand Practised by Mr. Thomas Lloyd, in Taking Down the Debates of Congress; and Now (with his permission) Published for General Use by J.C., printed in Philadelphia for Carey in 1793, the year he left for London (see Sowerby, description begins E. Millicent Sowerby, comp., Catalogue of the Library of Thomas Jefferson, Washington, D.C., 1952–59, 5 vols. description ends No. 1133). He wished Rice to settle his accounts from the sale of that publication as well as for his edition of Washington’s Official Letters to the Honorable American Congress and other books Carey had left with him. Carey also requested that Rice send the income from the sale of personal items he had left in Philadelphia, including pistols and a “copyingpress.” Noting that perhaps Rice had not sent a remittance earlier because of the danger of interception at sea, he informed him that he was contacting TJ who, Carey was confident, would receive the monies from Rice and find a safe conveyance for the transfer of the funds. Carey mentioned that he was “in extreme need of money” and wanted the remittance sent as quickly as possible. He also noted that “Mr. Jefferson, in his zeal to promote the cause of literature, may perhaps think of some person who can assist in disposing of any copies” that remained unsold, in which case Rice was to turn the volumes over to that party (RC in DLC; addressed: “Mr. Rice, Bookseller, Philadelphia”; below the address in TJ’s hand: “50. Market” and “16. S. 2 d.”). To aid Rice in closing the accounts, Carey enclosed letters to “T. Grammer, Esqr. Petersburg, Virginia” and “Mr. Young, Bookseller, Charleston, S.C.,” dated 21 May 1798, requesting them to remit payments to Rice for 20 and 25 copies of Short-Hand, respectively, that they had received in 1793 (same).

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