Thomas Jefferson Papers

Donald Fraser to Thomas Jefferson, 10 October 1819

From Donald Fraser

New York Octr 10th 1819.


You will herewith receive a Biographical Sketch, concerning Yourself,—Written, I trust, in an Impartial cand1 with candour; Devoid of that Derrogating & Depreciatin of character, which was a blemish in that Giant of Literature, Dr Samuel Johnson’s “Lives of the Poets.”

I have two Sons, who would not like to see their old Parent act the base sycophant,—nor Shall I act that part, as my Preface will evince.

My eldest Son, Donald, was four times wonded, in the face of the enemy; And was aid-camp to Generals, Pike, Porter & Brown. My Sons thank God, are truly filial & contribute to my Support, since I lost the fruits of many year’s industry, by mis-placed confidence,

I have honor to be very respectfully,

Sir, your humble Servant,

Donald Fraser Senr

RC (MHi); dateline beneath signature; at foot of text: “Thos Jefferson Esqr” and “Please to turn leaf” for enclosure on verso; endorsed by TJ as received 18 Oct. 1819 and so recorded in SJL.

1Thus in manuscript.

Index Entries

  • Brown, Jacob Jennings; as major general search
  • Fraser, Donald; and biographical sketch of TJ search
  • Fraser, Donald; family of search
  • Fraser, Donald; letters from search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Descriptions of; biographies of search
  • Johnson, Samuel; The Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets search
  • Pike, Zebulon Montgomery; mentioned search
  • Porter, Peter Buell; and War of1812 search
  • The Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets (S. Johnson) search