Thomas Jefferson Papers

John Rhea to Thomas Jefferson, 13 March 1821

From John Rhea

Washington 13th March 1821


Please, accept the within Copy of a Circular Letter—I have the honor to be Your obt servt

John Rhea

RC (MHi); at foot of text: “Thomas Jefferson Esqr late President of the United States”; endorsed by TJ. Recorded in SJL as received 25 Mar. 1821. Enclosure: Rhea to his constituents, Washington, 5 Mar. 1821, reporting on the ratification of the Adams-Onís Treaty with Spain and its effect on the boundaries of the United States; emphasizing the importance of Florida now being securely under United States control; noting that a resolution has been adopted for Missouri’s admission as a state “without any future interference of Congress” (p. 1); summarizing the annual report of the secretary of the treasury of 1 Dec. 1820 and detailing national revenue and expenditures; analyzing statistics on manufacturing and produce and their effect on imports and exports; asserting that agriculture, manufacturing, and commerce will all flourish under the just and wise regulation of Congress; and concluding that, “under the protection of the Almighty,” the United States “are great and powerful, and progressing to unknown greatness. Employed in their own agriculture and other pursuits, they desire not to interfere in the affairs of other nations. Let them never exert their power but in vindication of their own rights” (p. 7) (printed circular in DLC: Madison Collection, Rare Book and Special Collections; reprinted in Noble E. Cunningham Jr., ed., Circular Letters of Congressmen to Their Constituents, 1789–1829 [1978], 3:1140–7).

On this day Rhea sent the same circular to John Quincy Adams and James Madison (DNA: RG 59, MLR; Madison, Papers, Retirement Ser., 2:285).

Index Entries

  • Adams-Onís Treaty (1819); and U.S. relations with Spain search
  • agriculture; and U.S. economy search
  • Congress, U.S.; and manufacturing search
  • Congress, U.S.; and Missouri question search
  • Florida; acquisition of by U.S. search
  • God; and U.S. interests search
  • manufacturing; encouragement of in U.S. search
  • Missouri (state); and statehood search
  • Rhea, John; letters from search
  • Rhea, John; sends constituent circulars to J. Madison search
  • Rhea, John; sends constituent circulars to J. Q. Adams search
  • Rhea, John; sends constituent circulars to TJ search
  • Spain; and Adams-Onís Treaty (1819) search
  • United States; economy of search