To Joseph Rapin
Washington Oct. 11. 1801.
On my arrival here I recieved your account: which I found to be all perfectly right & just, and mr Barnes, who is now going on to Philadelphia will pay you the balance. it is my duty to declare to you that I have been entirely satisfied with the integrity, diligence and skill, with which you have conducted yourself in my service, and that I very much regretted the circumstances which obliged you to leave me; however if they were for your benefit it will be a consolation, as I shall be happy always to hear of your success in life. mr LeMaire conducts himself & my affairs here extremely well, and I am in hopes we shall be perfectly satisfied with each other. accept my best wishes for your prosperity and happiness and assurances of my esteem & attachment.
PrC (MHi); at foot of text: “M. Rapin”; endorsed by TJ in ink on verso.
Your Account: on 5 Oct., after reviewing the “accounts left by Rapin” as steward of the President’s House, TJ asked John Barnes to pay Rapin $286.98. That amount included $68.74 for household expenses in the period 26–31 July; $150.21 for household expenses, 1 Aug. to 6 Sep.; $32 for the expenses of Rapin’s trip to Philadelphia and back; $13.45 “for tinning vessels”; and $22.58 paid to George Gilpin for the items sent by Tobias Lear (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 , 2:1054).
On 5 Oct., TJ also wrote an order on Barnes to pay $376.17 to Étienne Lemaire, Rapin’s successor as steward. That sum, according to the “Analysis” or summary that TJ recorded in his financial memoranda, included £6.15.0 for Lemaire’s journey from Philadelphia and £4.15.0 for articles he obtained in that city, plus weekly household expenditures at the President’s House from 6 Sep. to 3 Oct., for a total of £85.4.6 or $227.17. The payment to Lemaire on 5 Oct. also included $139 for wages of the household staff, including the steward, from 4 Sep. to 4 Oct., and $10 for Lemaire’s wages from 25 Aug. to 4 Sep. On 11 Oct., TJ gave Lemaire another order on Barnes for $51.66 (which TJ also rendered as £19.7.5) for expenditures during the week of 4–10 Oct., consisting of $48.66 for provisions, $2 for servants’ clothes, and $1 for “Miscellanies.” In his financial memoranda, TJ divided the cost of that week’s provisions by 34, which was apparently the number of main meals served at the President’s House during the week. By his calculation, the cost per dinner was $1.43 (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 , 2:1053–5).