Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Andrew Ellicott, 11 May 1802

From Andrew Ellicott

Lancaster May 11th. 1802

Dear Sir

This will be handed to you by Mr. Dinsmore, who was several years our Agent in the Cherokee nation, the duties of which he performed with singular reputation; and to his exertions in a great measure, is owing the introduction of some of the arts among that people—He has lately been appointed by the Secretary of War agent to the Chocktaws, among whom I have no doubt he will be found extremely useful, and do credit to the appointment.—He, and Col. Hawkins possess each others confidence, which is essential to the success of the business in which they are concerned.

I have the honour to be with great sincerity your friend and Hbl. Servt.

Andw; Ellicott

RC (DLC); at foot of text: “Thos. Jefferson President of the U.S.”; endorsed by TJ as received 31 May. PrC (DLC: Ellicott Papers).

MR. DINSMORE: Silas Dinsmoor served as the government’s agent with the Cherokees from 1795 to 1799. In that period Benjamin Hawkins was the principal agent for Indian affairs south of the Ohio River. Henry Dearborn APPOINTED Dinsmoor the agent to the Choctaw nation in March 1802 (Cletus F. Fortwendel, Jr., “Silas Dinsmoor and the Cherokees: An Examination of One Agent of Change,” Journal of Cherokee Studies, 17 [1996], 28–48; William G. McLoughlin, Cherokee Renascence in the New Republic [Princeton, 1986], 42–5; Dearborn to Dinsmoor, 12 Mch. 1802, in DNA: RG 75, LSIA).

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