Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Meriwether Lewis, 15 July 1803

From Meriwether Lewis

Pittsburgh July 15th. 1803.
3. O’Clock P.M.

Dear Sir,

I arrived here at 2 O’Clock, and learning that the mail closed at 5 this evening hasten to make this communication, tho’ it can only contain the mere information of my arrival. No occurrence has taken place on my journey heither sufficiently interesting to be worthy of relation: the weather has been warm and dry; the roads in consequence extreemly dusty, yet I feel myself much benefitted by the exercise the journey has given me, and can with pleasure anounce, so far and all is well.—

I have not yet seen Lieut. Hook nor made the enquiry relative to my boat, on the state of which, the time of my departure1 from hence must materially depend: the Ohio is quite low, but not so much so as to obstruct my passage altogether.—

Your Obt. Humble Sert.

Meriwether Lewis.

RC (MHi); at foot of text: “Thos. Jefferson Presidt. U’States”; endorsed by TJ as received 25 July and so recorded in SJL.

so far and all is well: in the spring when TJ developed a cipher for Lewis’s use, he posited that the captain might someday write from the head of the Missouri, “all well, and the Indians so far, friendly” (Editorial Note and Document I of Cipher for Meriwether Lewis, printed above in this series at the end of April 1803).

Moses hook, a first lieutenant, commanded the army’s garrison at Pittsburgh and also served as assistant military agent there. Dearborn had ordered Hook to assist Lewis, see that he and his men had enough provisions to reach the post at Massac, and provide them with 18 light axes (Jackson, Lewis and Clark description begins Donald Jackson, ed., The Letters of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, with Related Documents, 1783-1854, 2d ed., Urbana, Ill., 1978 description ends , 1:101-2, 119-20; Heitman, Dictionary description begins Francis B. Heitman, comp., Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army, Washington, D.C., 1903, 2 vols. description ends , 1:540).

1MS: “departue.”

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