Thomas Jefferson Papers

Delamotte to Thomas Jefferson, 7 July 1819

From Delamotte

Havre 7. Juillet 1819.


J’apprends par M. short que vous avés fait une maladie dangereuse dont vous etes entierement retabli. celá me fait penser á mon âge & au votre, et ne voulant pas quitter ce monde sans vous avoir donné quelque témoignage du respect que j’ai pour vous, je m’empresse á vous féliciter de votre retablissement, á vous remercier des bontés que vous avés eû pour moi et de celles que vous seriés encore disposé á avoir si j’en dois croire le rapport de quelques personnes avec lesquelles j’ai eû en differents tems l’occasion de parler de vous. recevés donc, Monsieur, l’expression de mon respect & de mon affection, Si vous voulés bien me permettre ce dernier sentiment. Vivés longtems, vivés heureux, & Soyés assuré que mon Coeur vous est tout dévoué.

J’ai l’honneur de vous Saluer

Delamotte ·/·

Editors’ Translation

Havre 7. July 1819.


I learn from Mr. Short that you were dangerously ill but have now fully recovered. That reminds me of my age and yours and, not wanting to leave this world without giving you some testimony of my respect for you, I hasten to congratulate you on your recovery and to thank you both for your past kindnesses and for those that you might still be disposed to bestow on me, if I am to believe the reports of some people with whom I have had the opportunity, on different occasions, to speak of you. Accept therefore, Sir, the expression of my respect and affection, if you will permit me the latter sentiment. Live long, live happily, and be assured that my heart is entirely devoted to you.

I have the honor to salute you

Delamotte ·/·

RC (DLC); endorsed by TJ as received 29 Oct. 1819 and so recorded in SJL. RC (MHi); address cover only; with PoC of TJ to Bernard Peyton, 20 Feb. 1821, on verso; addressed: “Monsieur Tho Jefferson.” Translation by Dr. Roland H. Simon. Enclosed in William Short to TJ, 21 Oct. 1819.

François Claude Adam Delamotte, merchant and public official, was a native of France and a member of the Le Havre firm of Haviland Le Mesurier & Compagnie by 1787, when he visited TJ in Paris. Delamotte procured sheepdogs for TJ in 1789 and helped ship his baggage back to the United States the following year. President George Washington appointed Delamotte vice-consul at Le Havre in 1790, a position he held until 1798. By 1792 he concurrently operated his mercantile pursuits under the firm of Delamotte & Compagnie. In 1801 TJ named him commercial vice-agent for Le Havre, but the French government prevented him from taking office due to his French citizenship. Afterwards Delamotte retired to the countryside for several years. He returned by 1815 to commerce in Le Havre, where he sought the United States consulship without success (Archives of Government Offices Outside of the City of Washington [62d Cong., 3d sess., 1913, House Doc. 1443], 48; PTJ description begins Julian P. Boyd, Charles T. Cullen, John Catanzariti, Barbara B. Oberg, James P. McClure, and others, eds., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, 1950– , 42 vols. description ends ; MB description begins James A. Bear Jr. and Lucia C. Stanton, eds., Jefferson’s Memorandum Books: Accounts, with Legal Records and Miscellany, 1767–1826, 1997, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, Second Series description ends , 1:744–5; JEP description begins Journal of the Executive Proceedings of the Senate of the United States description ends , 1:48, 52, 129–30, 403, 459 [4, 22 June 1790, 19, 20 Feb. 1793, 6 Jan. 1802, 9 Dec. 1803]; William Short to TJ, 5 Jan. 1816; TJ to James Monroe, 16 Jan. 1816).

Index Entries

  • Delamotte, François Claude Adam; identified search
  • Delamotte, François Claude Adam; letter from search
  • Delamotte, François Claude Adam; sends greetings to TJ search
  • French language; letters in, from; F. C. A. Delamotte search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Health; good health of search
  • Short, William; and F. C. A. Delamotte search
  • Short, William; and TJ’s health search