Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to Caesar A. Rodney, 7 October 1818

To Caesar A. Rodney

Monticello Oct. 7. 18.

A long absence from home, my dear friend, and long indisposition since my return, must apologise for this late and short acknolegement of your favor of Aug. 8. I am on the recovery, but not yet able to set up to write but in pain. I can therefore only return you thanks for the communications of your letter, which strengthen my hopes that our Southern brethren may be able to do as we have done. my wishes could not be strengthened, and you have lessened my doubts whether they can so far shake off the shackles of the priesthood as to give fair play to their own common sense. this is all that is necessary to make them equal to self government. your letter was the more welcome as the lying of the newspapers backwards & forwards have produced in me the habit of passing over unread every thing they pretend to give as to S. America, thinking absolute ignorance preferable to error. I must here conclude with assurances of my constant & affectionate friendship & respect.

Th: Jefferson

RC (DeHi: H. F. Brown Collection); addressed: “Caesar A. Rodney esq. Wilmington Del”; franked; postmarked Charlottesville, 10 Oct. PoC (DLC); on verso of reused address cover of Francis Adrian Van der Kemp to TJ, 11 May 1818; mutilated at seal; endorsed by TJ.

Rodney later inquired of John Wayles Eppes about a possible visit to TJ. On 11 Jan. 1819 Eppes replied from Washington that “Mr Jefferson when I heard last from him had recovered his health—It would afford him great pleasure I am certain to receive a visit from you—If you visit him I should be very glad if you would take my house in your way. In the month of August for several years past he has visited his property in Bedford and will most probably be there at the period you propose making your visit—If this should be the case the nearest rout is immediately by my house—Turn off at Fredericksburg & cross at Cartersville on James River—I live about 30 miles from that place and immediately in the most direct rout to Bedford. It is also the nearest and best way to the Springs in Virginia—Mr Jefferson has erected on his property in Bedford a very handsome Brick house with eight rooms and passes much of his time there taking with him occasionally his grand daughters. For several years he has passed the months of august and September in Bedford” (RC in PHi: Simon Gratz Collection; addressed: “C. A. Rodney Esqr Wilmington Delaware”; franked).

Index Entries

  • Eppes, John Wayles (TJ’s son-in-law); invites C. A. Rodney to visit search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Family & Friends; relations with grandchildren search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Health; illness of search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Opinions on; newspapers search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Opinions on; revolutions in Spanish colonies search
  • newspapers; TJ on search
  • Poplar Forest (TJ’s Bedford Co. estate); main house at search
  • Poplar Forest (TJ’s Bedford Co. estate); TJ visits search
  • Rodney, Caesar Augustus; as U.S. commissioner to South America search
  • Rodney, Caesar Augustus; letters to search
  • Rodney, Caesar Augustus; plans to visit TJ search
  • South America; republics in search
  • South America; TJ on independence movement in search
  • springs; routes to search