Thomas Jefferson Papers

David M. Randolph (1798–1825) to Thomas Jefferson, 14 December 1818

From David M. Randolph (1798–1825)

Richmond December 14. 1818.

Dear Sir

A man named Warrener, a bricklayer & plasterer by trade, desired me to ask of you whether he could get employment at the Central College.1 I have seen some of his work and as far as I can judge it is very well executed, he will work one month on trial on any terms you please, and if at the expiration of that time you chose it, he will engage to remain as long as he is wanted, satisfactory recommendations can be produced, both as to his morals, and to his abilities in the line of his profession, being regularly bred to the business2 in his own country (England) he is qualified to execute the ornamental branches of his trade equally well as the more usefull; if you wish to employ him, you will let me know it and he will go up directly. I believe another workman could be procured if wanted, who is as capable as the one above mentioned, with the best wishes for the long continuation of your valued & usefull3 life.

I remain with the greatest respect yours to command

D M Randolph, Junior

RC (DLC); endorsed by TJ (trimmed) as received 2[0] Dec. 1818. RC (MHi); address cover only; with PoC of TJ to Patrick Gibson, 11 Apr. 1819, on verso; addressed: “Thomas Jefferson Esqr Monticello Albemarle va”; franked; postmarked Richmond, 16 Dec. Recorded in SJL as received 20 Dec. 1818.

David Meade Randolph (1798–1825) was the son of David Meade Randolph (ca. 1759–1830) and Mary Randolph, and the nephew of TJ’s son-in-law Thomas Mann Randolph. He attended the College of William and Mary, 1816–18. Known as Meade within the family, he visited his cousins at Monticello in 1818 and 1823 and maintained a friendly correspondence with Nicholas P. Trist and Hore Browse Trist. Randolph suffered from poor health that apparently resulted in a physical deformity, making it difficult for him to earn a living. He resided at various locations in Virginia, often staying with family members. In his final year he was teaching at a school in York County, at which time his father unsuccessfully attempted to get him appointed librarian at the University of Virginia. Randolph died while on a visit to his mother in Norfolk, a fate his cousin Virginia J. Randolph Trist described as “the most fortunate that ever befel him” (Robert Isham Randolph, The Randolphs of Virginia [1936], 217–8; William and Mary Provisional List description begins A Provisional List of Alumni, Grammar School Students, Members of the Faculty, and Members of the Board of Visitors of the College of William and Mary in Virginia. From 1693 to 1888, 1941 description ends , 33; Randolph to Nicholas P. Trist, 10 Feb., 6 Nov. 1818, 13 Mar. 1819, 24 Mar., 6 Oct. 1820, 7 Oct. 1823, Martha Jefferson Randolph to Jane H. Nicholas Randolph, 14 Aug. 1818, and Elizabeth Trist to Nicholas P. Trist, 27 July 1820 [NcU: NPT]; Hore Browse Trist to Nicholas P. Trist, 22 Mar., 24 Sept. 1819 [DLC: NPT]; Martha Jefferson Randolph to Ann Cary Morris, 28 Dec. 1821 [PPAmP: Smith-Houston-Morris-Ogden Family Papers]; David M. Randolph [ca. 1759–1830] to TJ, 20 Apr. 1825, and TJ’s reply, 2 May 1825; Martha Jefferson Randolph to Ellen W. Randolph Coolidge, 13 Oct. 1825 and Virginia J. Randolph Trist to Coolidge, 16 Oct. 1825 [ViU: Coolidge Papers]; Richmond Enquirer, 18 Oct. 1825).

1Omitted period at right margin editorially supplied.

2Manuscript: “biusiness.”

3Manuscript: “esefull.”

Index Entries

  • Central College; brickmasons for search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Correspondence; letters of application and recommendation to search
  • Monticello (TJ’s Albemarle Co. estate); Visitors to; Randolph, David Meade (1798–1825) search
  • patronage; letters of application and recommendation to TJ search
  • Randolph, David Meade (1798–1825); and builders for University of Virginia search
  • Randolph, David Meade (1798–1825); identified search
  • Randolph, David Meade (1798–1825); letter from search
  • Randolph, David Meade (1798–1825); visits Monticello search
  • Warrener, Mr. (brickmason) search