Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to Benjamin Smith Barton, 22 October 1810

To Benjamin Smith Barton

Monticello Oct. 22. 10

Dear Sir

I recieved last night yours of the 16th. Persoon, being over at mr Randolph’s farm he will return it to me this evening: if not in time to go by this post, the 1st vol. shall go by the next, & the 2d by the one after, not to embarras too much a single mail. I would wish you not to consider yourself bound to return it at any particular period of time, and not prematurely for the compleating your work. botany here is but an object of amusement, a great one indeed and in which all our family mingles more or less. mr Randolph is our leader, and a good one. my mind has been so long ingrossed by other objects, that those I loved most have escaped from it, and none more than botany, whose lodgement is made peculiarly in the memory. the decay of that faculty with our physical decline is unfriendly to the recovery of all lost ideas.  I thank you for the assurances respecting Govr Lewis’s manuscripts. they will be thankfully recieved by his family. with respect to his just reputation, I know it will be safe in your hands, and the succesful atchievement of his great and bold enterprize, is gratefully felt by the world, and with dispositions to embalm his memory. accept the assurances of my great esteem and respect.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (DLC); at foot of text: “Dr B. S. Barton”; endorsed by TJ.

Index Entries

  • Barton, Benjamin Smith; and history of Lewis and Clark Expedition search
  • Barton, Benjamin Smith; botany work search
  • Barton, Benjamin Smith; letters to search
  • books; on botany search
  • books; on plants search
  • botany; books on search
  • botany; TJ on search
  • Lewis, Meriwether; and publication of journals search
  • Lewis, Meriwether; papers of search
  • Lewis and Clark Expedition; history of search
  • Lewis and Clark Expedition; journals of search
  • Persoon, Christiaan Hendrik; Synopsis Plantarum, seu Enchiridium Botanicum search
  • plants; books on search
  • Randolph, Thomas Mann (1768–1828) (TJ’s son-in-law; Martha Jefferson Randolph’s husband); botanical skills of search
  • Synopsis Plantarum, seu Enchiridium Botanicum (C. H. Persoon) search