Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Anthony Van Mannierck, 6 January 1803

From Anthony Van Mannierck

Antwerpen Jany 6h 1803.

Most respect’d Sir

Last March was a Year since1 I have made Application for the Consulship of Belgium without Success, altho I had every flattering hope before my Departure from Philadelphia where I am naturaliz’d and remain’d for about twenty Years always strongly attach’d to your present Administration, testes Andrew Ellicott, General Muhlenbergh, Wm. Jones, Member of Congress &c &c the place of Consul or Agent, is become vacant by the Death of a Mr. Thigh, in Ostende; if you think me that place Worthy, I beg leave to recommand myself: my Certificates from Baron de Beelen Bertholff and my Recommandation from several Gentlemen Known to your Excellency, remain in your Possession since March 1801, I beg the favor you would cause them to be return’d.

I crave your Pardon, Sir, if I take the Liberty in thus addressing you, not knowing a surer Way, tis through my unbounded Admiration for your greatness, I have taken that Confidence of writing you with Offer of my best Services I remain with Respects the most profound

your Excellency’s Most Humble Servt.

Anthy M: Van Mannierck

RC (DNA: RG 59, LAR); at head of text: “Thomas Jefferson Esqr.”; endorsed by TJ as received 1 Mch. and “to be Consul at Ostend” and so recorded in SJL.

Anthony Van Mannierck, a Philadelphia-based merchant, sold imported goods including textiles, coffee, glass, and metal from his wholesale stores at 91 Race Street and 171 South Third Street. He was a native of Belgium, but had been a citizen of the U.S. for 18 years. In June 1802, he announced in the Philadelphia press his recent move back to Belgium and the establishment of a commercial house in Antwerp under the firm of Anthony Mannier Van Mannierck (Philadelphia Federal Gazette, 30 July 1793; Philadelphia Gazette, 1 July 1796, 12 June 1802; Van Mannierck to Secretary of State, 2 Mch. 1801 [RC in DNA: RG 59, LAR]).

application: Van Mannierck applied to the secretary of state for a consulship on 2 Mch. 1801. Baron de Beelen Bertholf recommended him (Vol. 33:667, 668n).

place of consul or agent: TJ commissioned Francis L. Taney of Maryland as commercial agent for Ostend on 23 July 1801. Taney’s departure for Belgium was delayed and he died in Georgetown in September 1802 after having contracted yellow fever. On 9 Dec. 1803, TJ nominated Henry Wilson of Maryland to fill his vacancy (Madison, Papers description begins William T. Hutchinson, Robert A. Rutland, J. C. A. Stagg, and others, eds., The Papers of James Madison, Chicago and Charlottesville, 1962–, 33 vols. Sec. of State Ser., 1986–, 9 vols. Pres. Ser., 1984–, 6 vols. Ret. Ser., 2009–, 1 vol. description ends , Sec. of State Ser., 1:363, 2:295, 3:596; JEP description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States…to the Termination of the Nineteenth Congress, Washington, D.C., 1828, 3 vols. description ends , 1:459; Vol. 34:614n, Vol. 36:333).

1MS: “since since.”

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