Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to William Short, 21 December 1818

To William Short

Monticello Dec. 21. 18.

Dear Sir

The messenger who carried yesterday to the Post-office a copy of our University Report which I put under cover to you, brought in return your favor of the 12th and it’s kind enquiries after my health. a single Bulletin now suffices on that subject, as I find my health and strength quite restored; for altho some effects of the waters are still sensible, they are wearing off so steadily that I consider myself as entirely well.   I recieved a copy of Mde de Stael’s work from her son & son in law. it is indeed a most precious & superlative work. the world there sees in his true character what an impudent adventurer has been able to convulse it for 20. years.   our University report is now under consideration before our legislature. there are some local & some personal hostilities intriguing against it; yet I have a good deal of confidence in it’s passing in some shape; and the more as at their last session they appropriated 15,000 D. per. ann. to the use of an University, which they cannot revoke, because our Senate is almost unanimously with us, many therefore will yield to the consideration that the money being set apart may as well be put to some use. their whole literary fund is 1½ millions of D. at interest and the capital otherwise daily increasing. from this I have a hope we may within a year or two get them to double their endowment, which may make the establishment what the Report contemplates. but with 15,000 D. only it will go on slowly on account of the buildings, library Etc.

ever affectionately yours

Th: Jefferson

RC (ViW: TJP); at foot of text: “Mr Short.” PoC (MHi); on verso of portion of a reused address cover from James Monroe to TJ, the remainder of which was used for TJ to Frederick A. Mayo, 21 Dec. 1818; endorsed by TJ.

Napoleon was the impudent adventurer. “An Act appropriating part of the revenue of the Literary Fund, and for other purposes,” had allocated 15,000 d. per. ann. to a state university once a site was chosen (Acts of Assembly description begins Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia (cited by session; title varies over time) description ends [1817–18 sess.], 14 [21 Feb. 1818]).

Index Entries

  • An Act appropriating part of the revenue of the Literary Fund, and for other purposes (1818) search
  • books; on French Revolution search
  • Broglie, Achille Léonce Victor Charles, duc de; sends work to TJ search
  • Considérations sur les principaux événemens de La Révolution Françoise (Staël Holstein) search
  • French Revolution; works on search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Books & Library; works sent to search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Health; good health of search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Travels; to Warm Springs search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Writings; Proceedings and Report of the Commissioners for the University of Virginia search
  • Napoleon I, emperor of France; Madame de Staël Holstein on search
  • Proceedings and Report of the Commissioners for the University of Virginia (Thomas Jefferson); distributed by TJ search
  • Short, William; and TJ’s health search
  • Short, William; and University of Virginia search
  • Short, William; letters to search
  • Staël Holstein, Anne Louise Germaine Necker, baronne de; Considérations sur les principaux événemens de La Révolution Françoise search
  • Staël Holstein, Auguste Louis, baron de; sends work to TJ search
  • Virginia, University of; Establishment; and General Assembly search
  • Virginia, University of; Establishment; commissioners’ report search
  • Virginia; General Assembly search
  • Virginia; Literary Fund search
  • Warm Springs (Bath Co.); TJ visits search