Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from James Burnham, 11 May 1803

From James Burnham

Beverly May 11, 1803


Mr. Cutler has informed me that you intimated a wish, to purchase some Ticking in the course of the Summer ensuing. I have sent some to Mr Lewis Deblois of Washington for Sale, & among them two pieces of superfine, about enough for five beds, which I have directed him not to sell until you have seen them.—I have also sent a piece of coarse printed cotton, designed for the wear of laboring people & servants; and considering the price of it (altho’ it may seem high) I believe it will be found, in point of durability, to be equal to any article of clothing in the Country, and on the whole cheaper—Should you think well of it, I should be gratified by your giving a few yards of it a trial, on some of your Domestics—

I am Sir respectfully your obdt Sert.

James Burnham

RC (MHi); at head of text: “Thomas Jefferson Esqr.”; endorsed by TJ as received 16 May and so recorded in SJL.

Manasseh cutler showed some of Burnham’s textile samples to TJ on the previous New Year’s Day (see Vol. 39:525–6). On 24 May, lewis deblois issued an invoice for $79.59 for TJ’s purchase of 70¾ yards of “Superfine Bed Tick from James Burnhams Manufactory in Beverly.” On 13 June, TJ added to the invoice an order that John “Barnes will be pleased to pay this.” Deblois wrote below TJ’s order the following day, “Recd. of Mr. John Barnes Seventy nine dollars & fifty nine Cents in full of the above amount” (MS in CSmH; in Lewis Deblois’s hand and signed by him; with order on Barnes in TJ’s hand and signed by him; endorsed by Barnes). TJ recorded the transaction in his financial memoranda on 13 June (MB description begins James A. Bear, Jr., and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, Princeton, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 2:1102).

Index Entries