Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to John B. Colvin, 11 March 1810

To John B. Colvin

Monticello Mar. 11. 10.

Th: Jefferson returns his thanks to mr Colvin for the pamphlet he has been so kind as to send him, & particularly for1 so much of it as respects himself personally. it had arrived a week before his letter of Feb. 28. but there had not been a moment’s doubt of the pen from which it came; that it was the same which had been known to have been so often & so ably exercised in support of the republican princi ples and administration of our government. it’s truths, & it’s logic will dispel the illusions of the ignis fatuus who is the subject of it, as far as it shall be read: and it is hoped it will be taken into the newspapers, of which there are probably 50. readers for one of pamphlets. he salutes mr Colvin with esteem & respect.

PoC (DLC); dateline at foot of text; endorsed by TJ.

John Randolph of Roanoke was the ignis fatuus (literally “foolish fire,” lights caused by the combustion of swamp gases that are said to lead night travelers astray).

1TJ here canceled “those par.”

Index Entries

  • A Letter to the Honorable John Randolph (“Numa”) search
  • Colvin, John B.; letters to search
  • Colvin, John B.; political writings attributed to search
  • Colvin, John B.; sends pamphlet to TJ search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Books & Library; works sent to search
  • Randolph, John (of Roanoke); TJ on search
  • “Numa”; A Letter to the Honorable John Randolph search