Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to James Newhall, 18 September 1817

To James Newhall

Poplar Forest Sep. 18. 17.

Th Jefferson begs leave to return to [mr] Newh[a]ll the shoes he got of him yesterday, which he can barely get on and find[s] it would be impossible to wear. he will ask another pair instead of them whenever mr Newhall has any of the sam[e] soft quality, but a good size larger and longer.

PoC (MoSHi: TJC-BC); written on a small scrap; dateline at foot of text; top line faint; edge damaged; endorsed by TJ: “Newhall.” Not recorded in SJL.

James Newhall (1782–1870), merchant, was a native of Lynn, Massachusetts. Between 1812 and 1814 he moved to Lynchburg, where he operated a shoe store. In 1833 he was “Police Master of Lynchburg.” Newhall returned to Lynn by 1850 and continued working as a merchant, but he retired within a decade. He died in Lynn with an estate valued at $10,000 (Newhall’s death record, Massachusetts Vital Records, 1840–1911 [MBNEH]; Newburyport Herald. and Country Gazette, 30 Oct. 1812; Lynchburg Press, 27 Oct. 1814; Lynchburg Virginian, 28 Feb. 1833; Margaret Anthony Cabell, Sketches and Recollections of Lynchburg by the Oldest Inhabitant (Mrs. Cabell) 1858 [1858; repr. with additional material by Louise A. Blunt, 1974], 265–6, suppl., 80; DNA: RG 29, CS, Mass., Lynn, 1850–70).

On 17 Sept. 1817 TJ recorded paying $2.75 in Lynchburg for a pair of shoes (MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, 2 vols., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 2:1338).

Index Entries

  • clothing; shoes search
  • Newhall, James; identified search
  • Newhall, James; letter to search
  • Newhall, James; TJ buys shoes from search
  • shoes; TJ’s search