Montpr. Jany. 25. 1826
Your Circular of the 20–postmark 23. inst. was recd. last evening; and the letter from Mr. Pictet forwarded as desired to our Colleagues at Richmond.
I concur in your mode of providing for the foreseen vacancy, which I sincerely lament on every acct., as I should, in any admissible mode, that would avoid the necessity for an extra meeting of the Visitors. I am acquiescent also in your order of preference, among the names you propose for the vacancy; without being prepared to add a single one to them; unless indeed Mr. Lomax, whom I do not know personally & have otherwise a very slight knowledge of, should be thought proper for the list. Perhaps a like concurrence of our Colleagues, may render not only a meeting of the Board, but further consultations by letter, unnecessary.
I consider the chance so desperate as to both Barbour & Dade that it is scarcely justifiable to submit to the delay of a renewed offer to them. The remark is in some degree applicable, to Mr Rives, whose state of health, as well as the considerations you notice, forbids a hope of his acceptance. I understand his rank in Congress corresponds with the view you have formed of his talents & acquirements. The great distance of Mr. Preston & bare possibility of his acceptance seem to require us to lose sight of him also on the occasion Of Mr. Robertson I know nothing but from Report, which ascribes to him good talents & good principles. The Visitors at Richmond must be able to judge so much better of his qualifications than I can, that I am ready to subscribe to their estimate of them. Of Mr. Terrell I am personally altogether ignorant; But your portrait of him, to say nothing of the Testimony of Pictet, makes me willing to concur in the selection of him at once: if there be nothing in the answers from Richmond inconsistent with such a course. Always affecty.
RC (DLC: W. W. Corcoran Papers); draft (DLC).