James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Thomas Lloyd, 29 April 1813

From Thomas Lloyd

Alexandria April 29th. 1813

Respected Sir

Let me inform you, that at the solicitation of Mr. Snowden1 the printer of a daily paper here, I have been down in this place for more than six weeks; he told me that he would assure me—One hundred dollars for teaching some of his friends my System of Short-hand2 I have taught all those he recommended to me—viz Snowden, Slocum, John Lloyd, Lewis Neile, Vowel & Mr. McKinna the Cashier of the bank of Alexandria. They have paid me (except Snowden) the charge I made; and after all I am left without the means of defraying my Expences home; and must remain here unless your liberality will furnish what is requisite for that purpose.

I cannot ask Strangers in this place for money. I however ask it of you as an act of ______ I do not write the word: my System of Short-hand is nearly compleated, and the finish Mrs. Lloyd writes me cannot be effected without my being in Phila.

Will you address me at McKinna’s cashier of the Bank of Alexandria Your obdient Servant

Thomas Lloyd

RC (DLC). Docketed by JM.

1Samuel Snowden published the Alexandria Gazette, Commercial and Political (Brigham, History of American Newspapers, 2:1109).

2From 23 Jan. through 6 Mar. 1813, the Alexandria Gazette carried an advertisement soliciting subscriptions for Lloyd’s soon-to-be-published work explaining his system of shorthand. On 15 Mar. the Gazette announced that “Mr. Lloyd is in town, and will teach a few Gentlemen his system of Short Hand Writing.” The announcement continued to run until 24 Apr. 1813.

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