Thomas Jefferson Papers

William Sampson to Thomas Jefferson, 9 January 1817

From William Sampson

New york Jany 9 1817

Dear Sir

I have received your favor of the 30th Ulto And Am glad that the expression of “shortening the process by appealing to our own Opinions” came so apropos to sanction the part I had in the enclosed address to the people of the United States from the Society for promoting domestic manufactures

I should be proud and happy if our Sentiments objects and proceedings should meet your approbation in which Case I should sollicit your patronage. If it were not trespassing too rashly upon your time and goodness it would be infinitely agreeable to me to know your opinion upon the Subject and the view we have taken of it. It has already worked a revolution in Opinion here in So much that all parties except the very British, and those more british [than]1 the british themselves have Coalesced and Subscribed to the patriotic sentiments which I think it Contains.

I am of a Committee charged to draft a memorial to Congress upon the Subject, and as I have no motives but the love of this Country’s good I should like to be assured by the wise and judicious that I was well employed

I am Sir With profound respect Your Obedt Servant

William Sampson

RC (MHi); endorsed by TJ as received 19 Jan. 1817 and so recorded in SJL. RC (ViU: TJP-ER); address cover only; with PoC of TJ to Thomas Mann Randolph, 5 Mar. 1817, on verso; addressed: “Mr Jefferson Monticello”; franked; postmarked New York, 9 Jan. Enclosure: Address of the American Society for the encouragement of Domestic Manufactures, to the People of the United States (New York, 1817; Poor, Jefferson’s Library description begins Nathaniel P. Poor, Catalogue. President Jefferson’s Library, 1829 description ends , 6 [no. 223]; TJ’s copy in DLC: Rare Book and Special Collections), which argues that “a nation’s industry” should advance “hand in hand with her civilization, glory, and independence” (p. 5); contends that, although the War of 1812 has ended, the conflict against foreign manufactures, and especially those of British origin, still rages in full force; denies that domestic manufacturing damages American commerce and agriculture; maintains that it can be economical despite the high wages paid to American laborers; refutes the idea that it degrades and demoralizes the workforce; supports legislation to protect United States industry from foreign competition; and posits that there can be “no other way to independence than that of manufacturing for ourselves, at least for our own consumption” (p. 25).

Sampson was identified as the author of the enclosed address in the Boston New-England Palladium & Commercial Advertiser, 31 Jan. 1817.

The society’s memorial to congress of 18 Jan. 1817 included proposals that, in order to encourage manufacturing in the United States, the tariff passed the previous session be made permanent, the importation of cotton products from “beyond the Cape of Good Hope” be disallowed, the revenue laws be strengthened to prevent smuggling and fraud, a 10 percent duty be placed on the auction of foreign goods, and “public supplies” bought for the army and navy be “of American manufacture” (New York Commercial Advertiser, 18 Jan. 1817, and elsewhere).

1Omitted word editorially supplied.

Index Entries

  • Address of the American Society for the encouragement of Domestic Manufactures (W. Sampson) search
  • American Society for the Encouragement of Domestic Manufactures; addresses of search
  • American Society for the Encouragement of Domestic Manufactures; memorials to Congress of search
  • Army, U.S.; supplies purchased for search
  • Congress, U.S.; petitions to search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Books & Library; works sent to search
  • manufacturing; encouragement of in U.S. search
  • manufacturing; protection of U.S. interests in search
  • Navy Department, U.S.; supplies purchased for search
  • political economy; works on search
  • Sampson, William; Address of the American Society for the encouragement of Domestic Manufactures search
  • Sampson, William; and American Society for the Encouragement of Domestic Manufactures search
  • Sampson, William; letters from search
  • taxes; on imports search
  • United States; wages in search