Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to William Lee, 24 August 1816

To William Lee

Monticello Aug. 24. 16.

Dear Sir

Your letters of Dec. 20. 14. and May 11. 16. are yet to be acknoleged: and my thanks to be returned for the book which accompanied the former on the subject of Great Britain and America. that able exposition prepared the European mind for receiving truths more favorable to us, and subsequent events have furnished facts corroborating those views. I believe that America, & by this time England also are more justly appreciated. some greatly enlightened minds in Europe are in science far beyond any thing we possess; but leaving them out of the account (& they are but few) the mass of their people, within which term I include from the king to the beggar, is returning to Gothic darkness while the mass of ours is advancing in the regions of light. during the paroxysm of Anglomany lately raging in Bordeaux you must have had a mortifying time. that rage cannot last. the English character is not of that cast which makes itself be loved.   I was just about publishing mr Garde’s letter when I saw in the newspapers that addressed to Dr Mitchell. his position in a populous city, and convenient to others, being so much more favorable than mine for the views of M. Garde, I rejoiced to see his letter in so good hands and surceased medling in it myself, my inland & rural situation affording me no facilities for promoting it’s object. should you have occasion to write to mr Garde, I will thank you to throw in a line of explanation and to tender him my respects & best wishes for his success.

Not doubting that after so long a residence in France your wishes are still there, I heartily sympathise with them and hope the circumstances are not very distant, which may render your return agreeable and useful. Accept my salutations and assurances of perfect esteem and respect.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (DLC); on verso of reused address cover to TJ; at foot of text: “Wm Lee esq.”; endorsed by TJ.

Index Entries

  • books; on history search
  • deafness; education of deaf and mute search
  • disabilities, persons with; and education for deaf, mute, and blind search
  • education; for deaf, mute, and blind search
  • Gard, François; seeks to establish school for deaf and mute in U.S. search
  • Great Britain; TJ compares with U.S. search
  • health; deafness search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Books & Library; receives works search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Opinions on; British versus American society search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Opinions on; Great Britain search
  • Lee, William (1772–1840); Les États-Unis et L’Angleterre search
  • Lee, William (1772–1840); letters to search
  • Les États-Unis et L’Angleterre (W. Lee) search
  • Mitchill, Samuel Latham; and education of deaf and mute search
  • United States; and Great Britain search