Thomas Jefferson Papers

Thomas Jefferson to John Barnes, 23 March [1820]

To John Barnes

Monticello Mar. 23 [20.]

Dear Sir

Your kind letter of Feb. 19. has been some time at h[and], but my health and the injunctions of my physician make me slow & short in answers. I thank you for taking up my letter to mr Binns, and now inclose the 10.D. you were so kind as to pay for me. the best way of forwarding me the print of the Decln of Independance, will be to roll it on a light roller of wood, and wrap it in strong paper, in which way it may be committed to the mail. as there is probably a discount on our Virginia bills I inclose a qr Dollar for that, the roller Etc.

The portrait you speak of as for sale in Philada I suppose to be a copy by Stewart made for somebody; as he has sold several copies. I have never yet got the original, but have lately a promise of it.

I am made happy by hearing you retain good health. mine is still undecided, altho’ rather more promising: but while I live I shall retain constant friendship and respect for you.

Th: Jefferson

PoC (DLC); on verso of reused address cover to TJ; dateline faint and enhanced in an unidentified hand to give full year of composition; one additional word faint; torn at seal, with missing text rewritten by TJ; at foot of text: “Mr John Barnes”; endorsed by TJ. Recorded in SJL with parenthetical notation: “10.25.”

Barnes’s missing letter of feb. 19. 1820 is recorded in SJL as received 27 Feb. 1820 from Georgetown. It enclosed TJ to Enoch Reynolds, 13 July 1816 (presumably the document TJ identifies here as my letter to mr binns), printed above, as well as a receipt subjoined to that letter acknowledging the payment on 28 Jan. 1820 of $10 by Barnes to Joseph Reynolds on TJ’s behalf (MS in MHi; in Reynolds’s hand and signed by him; endorsed by TJ: “Reynolds Joseph. rect of Jan. 28. 20”). SJL also records a missing letter of 4 Apr. 1820 from Barnes to TJ, received 10 Apr. 1820 from Georgetown. Another missing letter from Barnes to TJ, dated 4 Apr. 1820, is recorded in SJL as received six days later from Georgetown.

An image of the print of the Declaration of Independence published by John Binns is reproduced elsewhere in this volume. A portrait of TJ by Gilbert Stuart was among forty-three original paintings listed for sale in an advertisement for an auction scheduled for 18 Feb. 1820 in Washington, D.C. (Washington Daily National Intelligencer, 9 Feb. 1820).

Index Entries

  • Barnes, John; as TJ’s agent search
  • Barnes, John; health of search
  • Barnes, John; letters from accounted for search
  • Barnes, John; letters to search
  • Barnes, John; TJ pays search
  • Binns, John; publishes Declaration of Independence search
  • currency; in Va. search
  • Declaration of Independence; TJ purchases printed copy of search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Correspondence; fatiguing or painful to search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Health; good health of search
  • Jefferson, Thomas; Portraits; G. Stuart’s paintings search
  • paintings; by G. Stuart search
  • prints; of Declaration of Independence search
  • Reynolds, Joseph; and print of Declaration of Independence search
  • Stuart, Gilbert; portraits of TJ by search