Thomas Jefferson Papers

Enclosure: Alden Partridge’s Notes on Altitudes of Mountains, 20 August 1817


Alden Partridge’s Notes on Altitudes of Mountains

Altitude of Ascutney Mountain above the Sea 3320—
Altitude of the same above Connecticutt River at Windsor Bridge 29031
Altitude of the same above the House of2 Mr Giles Gills, near the foot of the Mountain 2595
Elevation of Connecticutt River at Windsor Bridge above tide water  4173
Altitude of the South Peak of Moose-Hillock above the Sea 4536—
Altitude of the same above Mr Eastman’s in the township of Coventry, near the foot of the Mountain 3246—
Altitude of the same above Connecticutt River at Orford-Bridge 40824
Altitude of the same above Merrill’s tavern in the township of Warren near Baker’s River’s 38165
Elevation of Connecticutt River at Orford Bridge (36 miles above Windsor Bridge) above tide Water  504—6
Altitude of fairlee Mountain near the Meeting House (in fairlee) above Connecticutt River at Orford7 Bridge  547—
Altitude of the same above the Sea 10518

Note—The north Peak of Moose-Hillock is rather higher than the south Peak. At the time I was on the South Peak, the weather was so extremly thick and9 inclement as to prevent my passing to the North-Peak. From my own observation however, and from the best information I could obtain, I think the difference between the two Peaks does not exceed one hundred feet. I presume therefore that 4636 feet may be taken for the Altitude of the North Peak, without essential error. This is undoubtedly the most elevated Mountain in the northern States—if not on this side the Mississippi—The white Mountains excepted. It is situated in the10 State of New-Hampshire about 45 miles—northeasterly—from Dartmouth College, and about 15 miles east from the Village of Haverhill which adjoins Connecticutt river. It takes its name from having formerly been a celabrated range for Moose—Ascutney is an11 insulated mountain in the State of Vermont situated about five miles South-west from the Village of Windsor, and about the same distance West from Connecticutt River—distant from Moose Hillock about Sixty three12 miles southwest. The prospect from its summit, embracing a large portion of the States of Vermont and New Hampshire, is very fine13—I have witnessed more extensive ones, but never a more beautiful one. The foregoing Altitudes Were all determined14 from Barametrical and Thermometrical15 observations, in the month of August 1817—

Norwich Vermont A Partridge
 August 20th 1817—  Capt of Engineers

MS (DLC: TJ Papers, 211:37618); entirely in Partridge’s hand. Tr (VtNN: Partridge Papers).

1Preceding entry not in Tr.

2Preceding three words not in Tr.

3Tr: “204⅓.” Here and below, these changes in numbers between MS and Tr are explained at Partridge to TJ, 20 Feb. 1818.

4Tr: “4275.”

5Below this line Tr includes the following entry: “Altitude of the same above Connecticut river at Windsor Bridge 3116.”

6Tr: “261⅓.”

7Tr: “Windsor.”

8Recto ends here. Tr: “808.”

9Preceding three words not in Tr.

10Tr here adds “township of Coventry.”

11Tr: “a beautiful.”

12Tr: “sixty five.”

13Sentence in Tr reads “The prospect from the top of Ascutney is one of the finest I ever saw.”

14Tr: “calculated.”

15Manuscript: “Thermometrial.” Tr: “Thermometrical.”

Index Entries

  • altitude; barometers used to calculate search
  • altitude; thermometers used to calculate search
  • barometers; altitude calculated with search
  • Dartmouth College; mentioned search
  • Eastman, Mr. (of Coventry, N.H.) search
  • Gills, Giles search
  • Green Mountains; altitude readings in search
  • Merrill’s Tavern (Warren, N.H.) search
  • Mississippi River; mentioned search
  • New Hampshire; mountains in search
  • New Hampshire; taverns in search
  • Partridge, Alden; and calculation of altitude search
  • schools and colleges; Dartmouth College search
  • scientific instruments; barometers, mountain search
  • scientific instruments; thermometers search
  • thermometers; used to calculate altitude search
  • Vermont; mountains in search
  • White Mountains search