Thomas Jefferson Papers

Lyman Spalding to Thomas Jefferson, 30 March 1818

From Lyman Spalding

New York, 30 March, 1818.

Honoured Sir,

You will be pleased to permit me to enclose to your address, the circular for a national Pharmacopoeia.

I have the honour to be, sir, yours.

L— Spalding.

RC (MHi); at foot of text: “The honble. Thos. Jefferson Esqr.”; endorsed by TJ as received 7 Apr. 1818 and so recorded in SJL. Enclosure: communication from a committee of the Medical Society of the State of New-York composed of David Hosack, John R. B. Rodgers, Samuel L. Mitchill, John Stearns, John Watts, Theodric Romeyn Beck, Spalding, Wright Post, and Alexander H. Stevens, New York, 4 Mar. 1818, transmitting a series of resolutions approved that year by the society proposing the establishment of “a uniform system of preparing, and compounding medicines, throughout the United States”; complaining that “so multifarious are the names of medicines, that a name which is common in one town may be unknown in another, or, what is worse, be applied to a very different medicine”; inviting the various state medical societies, colleges of physicians and surgeons, and medical departments in other institutions of higher learning to come together to create an “American Pharmacopœia”; stating that the United States should be divided into four districts, with a convention to be held in each to formulate or select an appropriate pharmacopoeia; suggesting that the middle district hold its meeting in Philadelphia on 1 June 1819; recommending that a general gathering convene on 1 Jan. 1820 in Washington, D.C., to review the district conventions’ findings and set national standards; urging that a similar assembly meet every ten years to revise the work; and calling on all American druggists and apothecaries to adhere to the decisions of these conventions (printed circular in DNLM; at head of text: “Circular”).

Index Entries

  • Beck, Theodric Romeyn search
  • Hosack, David; and national pharmacopoeia search
  • medicine; and national pharmacopoeia search
  • Mitchill, Samuel Latham; and national pharmacopoeia search
  • New York (state); Medical Society of the State of New-York search
  • Post, Wright search
  • Rodgers, John Richardson Bayard search
  • Spalding, Lyman; and national pharmacopoeia search
  • Spalding, Lyman; letters from search
  • Stearns, John search
  • Stevens, Alexander Hodgdon; and national pharmacopoeia search
  • Watts, John (of New York) search