Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Peter Carr, 25 October 1801

To Peter Carr

Washington Oct. 25. 1801.

Dear Sir

I promised you one of the inclosed volumes, and one also for mr Peter Johnston for whom you requested the perusal of my Parliamentary Commonplace. the inclosed contains every thing useful from that, debarrassed of it’s rubbish.—we have recieved the first Consul’s ratification of our Convention. it is with a ‘bien entendu toujours that the objects of the article suppressed are abandoned by both parties.’ as this abandonment of indemnifications for our spoliated merchants was the work of a federal majority in the Senate, I shall leave to them to accept the ratification before I proclaim it. in the mean time we shall go on [with] the execution of it.—Govr. Sargeant has published a pamphlet on my refusal to re-appoint him in which he makes speeches for us both at a supposed interview which are entirely fabricated. we had an interview, but as his nonappointment had been decided by an unanimous vote in our cabinet & without a moment’s hesitation by any one, I took care to say not a word that could be avoided, nor a word that could give him a probable expectation of reappointment. knowing that I have never gone into the newspapers he tells his lie boldly in order to patch up a broken reputation.—the elections whether general or particular shew every where a wonderful progression in the republican spirit. if we are permitted to go on as gradually in the removals called for by the republicans as not to shock and revolt our well meaning citizens who are coming over to us in a steady […] we shall compleatly consolidate the nation in a short time; excepting always the Royalists & Priests.—I will pray you when on the assembly to […] me from time to time information of their proceedings. my affectionate respects to mrs Carr & sincere wishes for health & happiness to yourself.

PrC (DLC); faint and blurred; at foot of text: “Peter Carr.” Enclosure: TJ’s A Manual of Parliamentary Practice. For the Use of the Senate of the United States (Washington, D.C., 1801); see Vol. 32:337, 405.

I Promised You: TJ last corresponded with Carr when he was preparing his parliamentary manual for the press. Carr’s letter to TJ of 11 Nov. 1800, which according to SJL was received from “Mt. Warren” on the same day, and TJ’s response of 13 Nov. have not been found. Carr had probably visited TJ at Monticello during August and September as well. Peter Johnston began representing Prince Edward County in the Virginia General Assembly in 1793. He served as speaker of the House of Delegates from 1805 to 1807. In 1801, Carr, representing Albemarle County, also served in the House (Leonard, General Assembly description begins Cynthia Miller Leonard, comp., The General Assembly of Virginia, July 30, 1619–January 11, 1978: A Bicentennial Register of Members, Richmond, 1978 description ends , xv, 192, 223, 225, 239, 243).

Bien Entendu Toujours: “always understood,” or “provided always.” The statement signed by Bonaparte on 31 July to ratify the convention reiterated that both parties would be abandoning claims covered by the excised second article (Parry, Consolidated Treaty Series description begins Clive Parry, ed., The Consolidated Treaty Series, Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., 1969–81, 231 vols. description ends , 55:369–70).

Pamphlet: Political Intolerance, or The Violence of Party Spirit; Exemplified in a Recent Removal from Office: With a Comment upon Executive Conduct, and an Ample Refutation of Calumny; in a Sketch of the Services and Sacrifices, of a Dismissed Officer by “One of the American People” (Boston, 1801). For TJ’s interview with the governor, see Political Intolerance, 30–2, and Winthrop Sargent to TJ, printed at 31 May. Unanimous vote of our Cabinet: see Notes on a Cabinet Meeting, 16 May.

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