Thomas Jefferson Papers

Joseph C. Cabell to Thomas Jefferson, 21 January 1822

From Joseph C. Cabell

Richmond 21st Jan: 1822.

Dear Sir,

I thank you for your favor of 14th inst which arrived to-day, & has been shewn to Mr Johnson. The plan of suspending the interest would be practicable, if the income of the fund were not too low even to satisfy existing appropriations. The accountant’s estimate makes the revenue more than $62,000: but the stocks are ascertained to be so unproductive, as to bring the income for this year below 60,000$. Since the date of my last, individual conferences have taken place, & from these I should judge there would be no difficulty in getting the arrears of interest due from the Genl Government. The members seem liberal in giving lands in the moon. From this I judge that the dread of the people, is at the bottom of most of the objections made to the appropriations: and the clergy have set the people against the University. Some of our friends are very dissatisfied with what is called the intended Dead Horse Bill. But all think it better than nothing: and the greater part of the leading friends of the Institution think that nothing better would go down. Whilst the Executive is preparing the account we shall hold conferences, & if any thing better can be done, you may rest assured, I will not hesitate to ask. I think it important to make no application that will be rejected: & if they will give us the arrears of interest, only, we shall seem to be under the patronage of the Legislature, & in the event of our failure at Washington, we can return here on equitable grounds. Mr Fenton Mercer has written to Mr Bowyer, who brought in the resolution respecting the arrears of interest. From this I judge he thinks still there is some plausibility in the scheme. I shall soon see the letter, & will say a word about it in a postscript.   Faithfully yours

Joseph C. Cabell

P.S. I have seen Mr Mercer’s letter. He encourages Mr Bowyer to prosecute the subject, & says he has always thought the claim might be sustained at Washington. He believes it to amount to $250,000. He blames a former Governor for inattention to this business.

RC (ViU: TJP-PC); endorsed by TJ as received 24 Jan. 1822 and so recorded in SJL.

As head of the executive, on 28 Feb. 1822 Thomas Mann Randolph presented the Virginia House of Delegates the account of Virginia’s claims against the United States government for expenditures during the War of 1812 (JHD description begins Journal of the House of Delegates of the Commonwealth of Virginia description ends [1821–22 sess.], 209–12). For the resolution respecting the arrears of interest, see Cabell to TJ, 14 Jan. 1822, and note.

Index Entries

  • Bowyer, John (d.1851); as Va. legislator search
  • Brown, James (1780–1859); as Va. Literary Fund accountant search
  • Cabell, Joseph Carrington; letters from search
  • Johnson, Chapman; as Va. state senator search
  • Literary Fund; and loans for University of Virginia search
  • Literary Fund; and U.S. debt to Va. search
  • Literary Fund; funds of search
  • Mercer, Charles Fenton; as Va. legislator search
  • Randolph, Thomas Mann (1768–1828) (TJ’s son-in-law; Martha Jefferson Randolph’s husband); as governor of Va. search
  • United States; debt to Va. search
  • Virginia, University of; Administration and Financial Affairs; funding for search
  • Virginia, University of; Establishment; opposition to search
  • Virginia, University of; Faculty and Curriculum; clerical concerns over search
  • Virginia; General Assembly search
  • Virginia; House of Delegates search