Thomas Jefferson Papers

Joseph C. Cabell to Thomas Jefferson, 3 February 1820

From Joseph C. Cabell

Richmond 3d1 Feb: 1820.

Dear Sir,

I arrived here the day before yesterday, & found your favor of 20th ult, in the post office. The unfortunate and long-continued illness of my wife, kept me in Williamsburg till the 1st inst. The session is now far advanced; but I hope it is not too late to procure a further endowment of the University. The lamentable occurrence in the treasury encreases the difficulties we had already to encounter. Some enlightened men tell me there is no prospect of success: and I candidly think it doubtful. But I am now urging the subject in every quarter where I think I can be useful. Your letter and the important paper it contained, I took the liberty to shew to most of the members at the Eagle, this morning; and I found a good disposition on the subject. I am sorry there has been so little yet done in regard to this great subject. A detailed report from the President & Directors of the Literary Fund will appear in a few days, whereupon propositions will be submitted to the House of Delegates. In the mean time I shall see the friends of the measure. You may expect to hear more fully from me, hereafter: I write now merely to inform you that misfortunes have kept me in Wmsburg, till the 1st inst but that I am now in place, and engaged on this subject which is so interesting to your feelings. I am rejoiced to hear of your good health. I have thought it unnecessary to trouble you with letters heretofore, because our mutual friend Col: Randolph would write you fully on every subject. In haste, I remain, Dr Sir, faithfully yours

Joseph C. Cabell

RC (ViU: TJP-PC); endorsed by TJ as received 6 Feb. 1820 and so recorded in SJL.

TJ’s most recent letter to Cabell was dated 22 Jan. 1820, not the 20th ult. On 14 Feb. 1820 Virginia governor Thomas Mann Randolph, who by virtue of that office was president of the Literary Fund, submitted to the General Assembly its annual report, which suggested investing the Literary Fund in lands to be let at 6 percent interest in order to generate revenue, recommended changing the procedure by which money was distributed to Virginia schools, and summarized the Literary Fund’s resources, which were worth $91,619.33 as of 1 Oct. 1819, with “Surplus disposable Revenue” for the ensuing year projected at $44,030.62 (JHD description begins Journal of the House of Delegates of the Commonwealth of Virginia description ends [1819–20 sess.], 182–4).

1Reworked from “4th.”

Index Entries

  • Cabell, Joseph Carrington; and funding for University of Virginia search
  • Cabell, Joseph Carrington; as Va. state senator search
  • Cabell, Joseph Carrington; circulates TJ’s letters search
  • Cabell, Joseph Carrington; letters from search
  • Cabell, Mary Walker Carter (Joseph C. Cabell’s wife); health of search
  • Eagle Tavern (Richmond) search
  • Literary Fund; reports of search
  • Randolph, Thomas Mann (1768–1828) (TJ’s son-in-law; Martha Jefferson Randolph’s husband); as Literary Fund president search
  • Virginia, University of; Administration and Financial Affairs; funding for search
  • Virginia; House of Delegates search
  • Virginia; treasury of search