Geo Town 9th Octr 1806.
Fully pursuaded, that in all your greatness no man liveing, possesess more consideration or feeling for men in humbler Stations in life, than you do, my peculiar Situation, induses me to resort to your condecension and goodness, knowing that if there is nothing improper a friendly interference may save me from ruin. When the Government moved here Mr. Stoddert to induce me to build a Ropewalk for the accomodation of the Navy yard, pledged the Dept. to give me all I could do, and Always to advance me for the purchase of Hemp. Mr. Smith in a very Gentlemanly manner equalled all my expectations from the Dept. till last year, owing I believe to other causes than a want of disposition in that Gent. I had very little to do, but was led to expect that this year all I could furnish would be taken by the Dept. but, owing perhaps to some extraordinary occurances towards the last of the last Session of Congress the Secratary has given me little or no relief and with my warehouses crouded with Substantiall Stock which I can make no use of here, unless the Dept. takes it, I shall be ruined (and what is more afflicting my endorsers) for the want of Money to meet my payments.
Having Spent nearly all I am worth in erecting a Walk worth twelve or fifteen thousand dollars and having hands of my own that cannot be employed without manufactring about Seventy Dols per day of new Meterials, if I abandon it, I am ruined and to pursue it unless supported by the publick, is also ruin. Could I receive (what the Dept. was certainly pledged to give me) an advance of a few thousand dols upon Stock to a Very large Amt. I could with perfect ease meet my payments, otherwise cannot.
I am Sir, with unallianable affection, Your Devoted, Humb. Sert
NB I waited upon you this morning and found you were engaged with Mr. Beckley.
DLC: Papers of Thomas Jefferson.