[Monticello Aug. 30. 06]
I was so much engaged while at Poplar Forest that it is not in my power to answer your letter of the 21st. from that place. I advised your son to apply to the Postmaster General, with whom alone the power of appointing his deputies rests, & who being responsible for them, I never pretend to controul his choice. the competitors usually send on to him the best recommendations they can obtain, & on these he decides.
My father removed into this county I think in 1753. & was surveyor I should suppose about a year or two, when he was succeeded by John Dawson as principal & John Staples deputy; & after a short time Staples became principal. my father died in 1757. Staples having some time before recieved the books & papers of the Surveyor’s office; so that they were not burnt in his house, that accident having happened 10. years after his death; nor as far as I know or believe have they ever been destroyed. they were safe I know in Bryan’s time in whose hands I have seen the plat books & entry books of Colo. Fry & Doctr. Cabell who I believe were among the first surveyors after the county was taken from Goochland; and I have no reason to doubt they are all now safe. Accept my friendly salutations & good wishes.
ViW: Jefferson Papers, Tucker-Coleman Collection.