Gale Hill Jany 28th. 1806
That an appeal to the justice and Humanity of the President of the United States should be thought presumptuous when that appeal is honest & principled I can not allow myself to suppose; for I have been ever taught to reason differently. It was my respect for that character which made me commit the error (if it was an error) to confide in the honor of Mr. Saml Carr & to pay him in money for an estate to which he had no deed of title, upon his bond being given with securities & his solemn promise pledged that no time should be lost in procuring me a sufficient one.
Pressing affairs of the utmost consequence to my family oblige me to return to Europe, and I have an opportunity now of selling the property (Gale Hill) to Mr. Brodie who would purchase it for one of his children. I hope I may be excused for expecting that the President’s influence with his nephew may be recurred to without disrespect or offense to accelerate a business which has been at a stand for more than two years.
I have my bond to Mr. S. Carr with his receipt on the back for the purchase of the property & Mr. Carr’s bond & securities for the title to prove the principle upon which this appeal is made. Several letters to Mr. Carr have not been noticed.
I have the honor to be Sir, Your excellency’s most obedient & most humble Servant
Saml De Butts
PS. Mr. Brodie desires me to present his respectful compliments to you & begs leave to inquire if a letter which he did himself the honor to address to you & put into the Alexandria post office the week before last, has been received.
DLC: Papers of Thomas Jefferson.