Thomas Jefferson Papers

Bowling Clark to Thomas Jefferson, 27 May 1812

From Bowling Clark

Hills Creek may 27. 1812

Dear Sir

your feaver of the 14 Inst have recived, the perport of which shall indeaver to answer as near as my memery will admit of at present. about the time of your return from France, Richard Stith, sent me the certificate of two servais, the one of 99 acr adgoining Tullises & one of 800 Acres agoining the Forris track, & rote to me requesting his fees, & obsarves that he had waited a long wateing, from which expression, I suppose the servays had bin made a conciderable time before, stith recived his feas but by whome at present I disremember, the certificates ware dilivered to Colo Lewis, a conciderable time relapsed & not being called on for the Tax, I serspected that the certificates had never bin returnd to Rigisters office, & wrote to you on the subget, soon after which you sent the certificats back to me with a Land worrant & directed me to have the Land Located with that worrant, agreeable to your instructions I wateed on Stith & direted him to locate the Land, hee did so & made out the certificats in my presents from the former certificates, with out reservaying the Land, I paid him his fees, & returnd the certificates to you, how it has happened that the certificat should be sind Richard Smith, I cant account for it must have bin a mistake in the Register in spelling Stith name Stith receipt for his fees I expect you may find amongst your papers of our settlement on the close of the year 95, or in the Book left at the forrist with Mr Griffin, in which I charge your estate with money paid stith for his fees, should it be nessisary for you to now mor about the orrigiel entry & when servayed I would refer you to Mr Zuchereah Morris who lives near a place colled cutbank & on appimactock I beleave in prince edward County who looked after Mr Weyles Beness at the Forrest & think it probable that hee might be present when those entryes was servayed & am cincearly your old frind &c

Bowling Clark

RC (ViU: TJP); addressed: “Thomas Jefferson Eqre Monticello near Milton”; franked; postmarked Charlottesville, 10 June, and noted as “forwarded”; endorsed by TJ as received 10 June 1812 and so recorded in SJL.

Considerably after his return from france in 1789, TJ learned from Clark in 1795 that neither his 99 acr along Ivy Creek in Campbell County, nor 800 acres of his Poplar Forest land in Bedford and Campbell counties had been patented. While Richard Stith had sent Clark the certificate of survey for the latter tract by 1795, he did not survey the former tract until 23 Dec. of that year. Consequently, TJ did not receive the second certificate until 1796, and he finally obtained title to the 99 acres (surveyed as 100 acres) on 22 May 1797 (PTJ description begins Julian P. Boyd, Charles T. Cullen, John Catanzariti, Barbara B. Oberg, and others, eds., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1950– , 34 vols. description ends , 28:537–8, 553–4, 29:52, 130).

Index Entries

  • Campbell County, Va.; TJ sells Ivy Creek tract in search
  • Clark, Bowling; and Ivy Creek tract search
  • Clark, Bowling; letters from search
  • Griffin, Burgess; and sale of Ivy Creek lands search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Business & Financial Affairs; dispute with S. Scott search
  • Lewis, Nicholas; manages TJ’s affairs search
  • Morris, Zachariah; and TJ’s land dispute with S. Scott search
  • Stith, Richard; as Campbell Co. surveyor search
  • Wayles, John (TJ’s father-in-law); and Campbell Co. land search