Bear Wallow, 3. October 1827.
I have received your letter of the 24. September, communicating Mr. Longs wish to resign his office in the University, at the end of the present session—
I feel disposed to act as liberally towards Mr. Long, on this occasion as our duty to the institution will allow; but I doubt whether we should be justified in giving an unconditional assent to his leaving us, at the end of the session. I am quite willing to say to him, that we will accept his resignation, at the time proposed, provided we can, in the mean time, procure a fit successor, and that we will use our best endeavours to procure one—If this conditional arrangement will suit Mr. Longs purposes, I yield my assent to it; but at present, I am unwilling to go further—
In consequence of what passed at our last meeting, on the subject of doctor Jones of Philadelphia, I wrote, on my return home, to obtain information of his fitness for our vacant chair of Nat. philosophy. Instead of testimonials in favor of doctr. Jones, I received from doctr. Horner, very strong recommendations of doctor Robert M. Patterson, now professor of Nat. philosophy, in the University of Pennsylvania. I was much pleased with what I could learn of his character and qualifications, but after some correspondence with him he has declined being a candidate for the office—I send you an extract from his last letter to me, in which you will see that he has a favorable opinion of doctor Jones and recommends him for the office. with very great respect Your obt. Se[rt]—
RC and enclosure (DLC). RC docketed by James Madison. Enclosure is an extract from Robert M. Patterson to Chapman Johnson, 8 Sept. 1827.