Thomas Jefferson Papers

Samuel E. Mifflin to Thomas Jefferson, [ca. 27 September 1814]

From Samuel E. Mifflin

[ca. 27 Sept. 1814]

Dear Sir

I have written a letter addressed to you by the Post. I want to tell you now, Sir who I am in order that you may know how to act in this contest for victory between the different families of the united States of America including Virginia and Pennsylvania since General Thomas + Mifflin was resident in the latter State and his actions were so minute as to sanctify Virginia in wrath with Pennsylvania Delaware and Maryland. You know that the Virginians are a base people when compared with the noblemen of England or the native born Sons of America of New England for their defiance of the Creator is the contempt of the Holy of Holies since they, meanly, having it in their power, usurp the different offices under the different governments of the United States of America with the extensive territory of Louisiana in north America bordering on the Spanish Dominions and on the Pacif Oce and which you have assisted in purchasing to the eternal renown to your (at present)1 glorified name. But the fact is the intruding quaker families of Philadelphia in Pennsylvania and the families of Virginia even those not quakers many of them comeing up here to Philadelphia on a visit have in their way sanctified the Mifflin family in baseness2 forever. But this “eternal blazon” must no longer be. The Mifflin family and the Mifflin name is the greatest in the world as by the authority of the word of God it is testified. The Mifflin family are inspired by the Holy Ghost to protect man from the vanity of the quakers, to protect America from the contempt of Devils. I am the son of Warner Mifflin of the Eastern Shore of Virginia by birth and whose eldest Son by another venter was and is the great nephew of Joseph Galloway who joined the British standard during the American War. That eldest son lives in the State of Delaware at present in Kent County where his father formerly lived and a delightful State it is thereabouts. You know Dover to be the Capital marked on the maps in the centre of the State in Kent County By referring to the maps of the State you will see the Capital Dover marked and a village called Camden about five miles from thence which belonged formerly to my uncle Daniel Mifflin my fathers brother and which during the American War had that name of Camden attached to it in consequence of his my uncle Daniel Mifflin’s attachment to the British. You know that it’s not equal to Maryland in point of magnitude nor to the State of Virginia in point of magnitude but that the rights of Property ought to be protected from the vanity of the rich is a question of magnitude but that they ought to be protected from the intrusions of the ignorant and the wicked is a matter of fact. Joseph Galloway was a good man and one who venerated his god. He was born on the Eastern Shore of Maryland and in Delaware he had great3 nieces who got connected with my father as above stated. He was a good he was a great man having been a member of the first Congress having been a member of the Legislature of Pennsylvania4 under the British government where his speeches were great & glorious.


S. E: Mifflin

RC (DLC: TJ Papers, 202:35999–36000); undated; addressed: “Thomas Jefferson Esqr late President of the United States Monticello Virginia”; franked; postmarked Philadelphia, [27?] Sept.; endorsed by TJ as received 5 Oct. 1814 and so recorded in SJL.

eternal blazon quotes from William Shakespeare, Hamlet, act 1, scene 5: “But this eternal blazon must not be To ears of flesh and blood.” The eldest son of warner mifflin and his first wife, Elizabeth Johns, was his namesake Warner Mifflin (Hilda Justice, Life and Ancestry of Warner Mifflin [1905], 16, 18).

1Omitted closing parenthesis editorially supplied.

2Mifflin here canceled “with the Emlens.”

3Word interlined.

4Manuscript: “Legislature of Pennsylvania Legislature.”

Authorial notes

[The following note(s) appeared in the margins or otherwise outside the text flow in the original source, and have been moved here for purposes of the digital edition.]

+ + The contest always existed in fact among the Philadelphians who despised Thomas Mifflin without the authority of their God and between the Philadelphians & the Virginians as you yourself must know.

Index Entries

  • Galloway, Joseph; and Mifflin family search
  • Louisiana Territory; TJ’s role in purchasing search
  • Mifflin, Daniel; family of search
  • Mifflin, Elizabeth Johns (Warner Mifflin’s wife); family of search
  • Mifflin, Samuel E.; defends Mifflin family search
  • Mifflin, Samuel E.; defends reputation of T. Mifflin search
  • Mifflin, Samuel E.; letters from search
  • Mifflin, Thomas; reputation of defended search
  • Mifflin, Warner (1745–ca.1799); family of search
  • Mifflin, Warner (1777–1840); family of search
  • Quakers; criticized search
  • Shakespeare, William; quoted search