Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to Baker Beaven, 2 July 1818

To Baker Beaven

Monticello July 2. 18.


We have employed 4. hands 3. days in searching for slate, and came to what is of a proper thickness and fine color, but not in sheets of any size. I have no doubt we could obtain these, if we had now time to pursue it. but as other things press, and it seems very uncertain at what depth we can obtain such as ought to be used, we postpone it to the winter. I will send you a sample of what we found if I can meet with a conveyance and when we resume the business again, we shall probably trouble you again on the subject. accept the assurance of my esteem & respect.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (MHi); at foot of text: “Mr Baker Beaven”; on verso of reused sheet with canceled notation in TJ’s hand: “Catalogue of books at Monticello”; mistakenly endorsed by TJ as a letter of 2 July 1819 but correctly recorded in SJL.

Baker Beaven (Beavin; Bivans) (1785–ca. 1821), slater and plasterer, began his training in Baltimore in 1803 when he was indentured by his father to Cornelius Walker, with whom he was due to remain until his twenty-first birthday in 1806. He died in Richmond (Harford Co., Md., Orphans’ Court Proceedings, Book AJ1, 21 July 1803; Richmond City Hustings Court Will Book, 3:131).

Index Entries

  • Beaven (Beavin; Bivans), Baker; as slater search
  • Beaven (Beavin; Bivans), Baker; identified search
  • Beaven (Beavin; Bivans), Baker; letter to search
  • building materials; slate search
  • Central College; builders for search
  • slate search