From Edward Savage
New York Feby. 7—1803
Since my Residence in this City I have added meany Europen Paintings to the collection which you Saw in Philadelphia. Last Spring I Bought the Collection of Natural Curosities known by the Name of the Tammany Museum in this City which I Have added to the Paintings the Collection Now is Large and fills a Large Space I have taken the Liberty to Enclose to you a Discription of an non Descript animal. Likewise one of my Proposals for Publishing the Print of the Declaration of Independence which I intend to finish as soone as Possable Should you be pleased to incourage the work and will be kind enough to send to Either of the Door keepers of Congress, I have Furnished them with Printed Recipts to be given for money advanc’d.
I am Sir with great Respect your Most Humble Sert.
RC (DLC); at foot of text: “Thomas Jefferson President of the united States”; endorsed by TJ as received 11 Feb. and so recorded in SJL. Enclosures: see below.
tammany museum: in 1802, Savage acquired the natural history collection of the American Museum, founded by the Tammany Society in 1791, and renamed his New York institution the Columbian Gallery of Painting and City Museum (ANB description begins John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes, eds., American National Biography, New York and Oxford, 1999, 24 vols. description ends ).
i have taken the liberty to enclose: the enclosures mentioned by Savage above apparently miscarried. TJ informed the painter of this in his reply on 4 Mch., and Savage resent his description of a mountain ram and a copy of his proposal on 10 Mch.
Savage began advertising his proposal to publish a print of the declaration of independence in February 1803. The engraving was to be based on an 11 foot by 8 foot painting of the signing, which Savage declared to be “nearly completed” and possessing “Striking likenesses of the principal characters who composed the Congress of that day.” The print would measure 26 inches by 19 inches and include an index to the portraits contained in the picture (ANB description begins John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes, eds., American National Biography, New York and Oxford, 1999, 24 vols. description ends ; New York Morning Chronicle, 26 Feb. 1803; New York Daily Advertiser, 1 Mch. 1803).