Thomas Jefferson Papers

William Jarvis to Thomas Jefferson, 4 August 1810

From William Jarvis

Lisbon 4 August 1810

Respected sir

I have the honor to acquaint you that the Junta of Etremadura having lately determined on selling the several Cabannas of Merino sheep which they had confiscated; I was enabled to purchase out of them one thousand Paular & one thousand Aguirres sheep. The Paular’s were the Prince of Peace’s Cabanna, and are esteemed one of the finest Cabannas in Spain, in point of form, size, and fineness & weight of fleece. The Aguirres are a much smaller breed, but are reputed not to be excelled in Spain for the fineness of their fleece. Some of each of those Cabannes I have shipped on board the schooner Grey-hound—Captn Baxter, now bound to Richmond;—This has afforded me so handsome an opportunity of fulfilling a promise I formerly made to you, that I could not forego the opportunity, and I have taken the liberty to desire the Collector of the District of Richmond to select a paular & an Aguirres ewe from the shipment and to hold them subject to your orders; which pair of ewes, I hope sir you will do me the favour to accept. I have directed the Collector to hold them subject to your instructions.

The french have blockaded Almeida, have entered Penhel, where the British were a few days since, the English falling back on their positions & the head quarters are at Celorico. Considerable alarm begins now to be for the safety of the Country.

A slight indisposition & press of business prevents my adding any thing more than the assurances of my great veneration & respect—and of my remaining

sir Yr Mo: Obdt and very Hble servt

Wm Jarvis

RC (DLC); at foot of text: “Thos Jefferson Esquire”; endorsed by TJ as received 27 Sept. 1810 and so recorded in SJL.

Manuel de Godoy, chief minister of Charles IV of Spain from 1792–1808, became known as the prince of Peace after he helped to restore harmonious relations with France in 1795. cabanna (cabaña) is a Spanish term for a herd of livestock.

Index Entries

  • Almeida, Portugal; French forces besiege search
  • Baxter, Capt. (schoonerGreyhound) search
  • France; military operations in Spain and Portugal search
  • Gibbon, James; as collector at Richmond search
  • Godoy, Manuel de search
  • Great Britain; military operations of in Spain and Portugal search
  • Greyhound (schooner) search
  • Jarvis, William; and merino sheep search
  • Jarvis, William; letters from search
  • merino sheep; Aguirre breed search
  • merino sheep; Paular breed search
  • merino sheep; procurement from Spain search
  • Portugal; military operations in search
  • Spain; merino sheep and wool from search