Thomas Jefferson Papers

Benjamin Silliman to Thomas Jefferson, 31 August 1819

From Benjamin Silliman

New Haven Aug 31–1819—


I have the honour to inform you that, agreeably to the within act you have been named one of the original members of the American Geological Society & your acceptance will be deemed an honour to the Institution

With very great respect I am sir your very obt servt

B Silliman V. P.

RC (MHi); on a sheet folded to form four pages, with letter on p. 1, p. 2 blank, enclosure on p. 3, and address on p. 4; addressed: “Hon. Thomas Jefferson Monticello Virginia”; stamped; postmarked New Haven, 1 Sept.; endorsed by TJ as received 14 Sept. 1819 and so recorded in SJL. Enclosure: “An Act to incorporate The American Geological Society,” approved by the Connecticut legislature on 31 May 1819, noting that “learned societies have been found to promote, preserve, and diffuse, the knowledge of those arts and sciences which are the support of agriculture, manufactures and commerce, and to advance the dignity, virtue, and happiness, of a people”; stating “that George Gibbs, Benjamin Silliman, Parker Cleaveland, J. W. Webster, Robert Hare, Robert Gilmor, Jun. and their associates, be, and they are hereby constituted, a body politic and corporate, by the name of The American Geological Society”; and granting the society the legal rights of incorporation, including the ability to elect officers and members, make bylaws, and hold property not exceeding $60,000 in value (printed text in MHi, with printed signatures of David Plant as speaker of the Connecticut House of Representatives, Jonathan Ingersoll as president of the Connecticut Senate, Oliver Wolcott as governor, and Thomas Day as secretary of state; conjoined with covering letter).

Index Entries

  • American Geological Society; An Act to incorporate The American Geological Society (1819) search
  • An Act to incorporate The American Geological Society (1819) search
  • Cleaveland, Parker; and American Geological Society search
  • Connecticut; legislature of search
  • Day, Thomas search
  • geology; American Geological Society search
  • Gibbs, George; and American Geological Society search
  • Gilmor, Robert; and American Geological Society search
  • Hare, Robert; and American Geological Society search
  • Ingersoll, Jonathan search
  • Plant, David search
  • Silliman, Benjamin; and American Geological Society search
  • Silliman, Benjamin; letter from search
  • Webster, John White; and American Geological Society search
  • Wolcott, Oliver (1760–1833); as governor of Conn. search