Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Benjamin Hawkins, 1 February 1802

From Benjamin Hawkins

Tookau,bat,chee in the Creek agency 1st Feby. 1802.

I do myself the pleasure to send you a specimen of my tours through this agency in my journal down the Tennassee with the map of the river. I have made it a rule to travel with a pocket compass and time piece and have in likemanner noted every journey through this country; several of which, are ploted and the whole will be sent to the War office as soon as I have paper and leisure to copy them. I intended them in the first instance as military routes only, as I had no rule to reduce the curves of paths taken by time to the same exactness as those of a river: but they will be useful in the delineation of this part of the United States. I could not get a portable instrument to take the Latitude or I would have made it more complete. I shall at the first moment of leisure go down every river in this agency and deliniate them as I have done the Tennassee.

I have the honour to be with all possible respect my dear sir, Your most obedient servant

Benjamin Hawkins

RC (DLC); at foot of text: “Mr. Jefferson President of the United states”; endorsed by TJ as received 5 Mch. and so recorded in SJL. Enclosures not found.

Noted every journey: as he visited various locations as Indian agent, Hawkins kept records of the courses he traveled and distances between landmarks. In some cases he made more detailed journals (Foster, Hawkins description begins Thomas Foster, ed., The Collected Works of Benjamin Hawkins, 1796–1810, Tuscaloosa, Ala., 2003 description ends , 1j–89j, 105–13, 117–20, 143–51, 165–7; Vol. 33:110n).

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