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to cause extensive suffusions of blood, in early life, upon standing to write for any ength of time, bursting beneath the skin: it, however, gave him no inconvenience. is countenance was mild and benignant, and attractive to strangers. While Presient, returning on horseback from court, with company whom he had invited to inner, and who were, all but one or two, riding ahead of him, on reaching a stream ver which there was no bridge, a man asked him to take him up behind and carry im over. The gentlemen in the rear coming up just as Mr. Jefferson had put him own and rode on, asked the man how it happened that he had permitted the others pass without asking them? He replied, “From their looks I did not like to ask em—the old gentleman looked as if he would do it, and I asked him.” He was ry much surprised to hear that he had ridden behind the President of the United tes. Mr. Jefferson's stature was commanding, six feet two and a half inches in sight, well formed, indicating strength, activity, and robust health; his carriage, ect; step firm and elastic, which he preserved to his death; his temper, naturally ong, under perfect control—his courage, cool and impassive—no one ever knew exhibit trepidation—his moral courage of the highest order—his will, firm and exible—it was remarked of him that he never abandoned a plan, a principle, or a nd. A bold and fearless rider, you saw at a glance, from his easy and confident t, that he was master of his horse, which was usually the fine blood horse of Viria. The only impatience of temper he ever exhibited, was with his horse, which ubdued to his will by a fearless application of the whip, on the slightest manifestaof restiveness. He retained to the last his fondness for riding on horseback; he within three weeks of his death, when from disease, debility and age, he nted with difficulty. He rode with confidence, and never permitted a servant ccompany him; he was fond of solitary rides and musing, and said that the pree of a servant annoyed him. He held in little esteem the education that made ignorant and helpless as to the common necessities of life; and he exemplified an incident which occurred to a young gentleman returned from Europe, where d been educated. On riding out with his companions, the strap of his girth e, at the hole of the buckle; and they, perceiving it an accident easily remedied, on and left him. A plain man coming up and seeing that his horse had made ular path in the road in his impatience to get on, asked if he could aid him? sir,” replied the young man, “if you could only assist me to get it up to the hole.” “Suppose you let it out a hole or two on the other side,” said the
s habits were regular and systematic. He was a miser of his time, rose at dawn, wrote and read until breakfast, breakfasted early, and dined from to four—after breakfast read for half an hour in his public rooms or portico, mer—visited his garden and workshops—returned to his writing and reading , when he rode on horseback to three or half past—dined, and gave the g to his family and company—retired at nine, and to bed from ten to eleven. in his last illness, that the sun had not caught him in bed for fifty years. ays made his own fire. He drank water but once a day, a single glass, when rned from his ride. He ate heartily, and much vegetable food, preferring cookery, because it made the meats more tender. He never drank ardent r strong wines—such was his aversion to ardent spirits that when, in his ass, his physician desired him to use brandy as an astringent, he could not im to take it strong enough.
nherited from his father 1,900 acres of land, and some negroes. He comthe practice of the law soon after he came of age. When he narried, in his 29th year, he had increased his estate to 5,000 acres, all paid for. His accounts show a receipt of $3,000 a year from his practice at the bar, and $2,000 from his farms, a large income at that day. The death of his father-in-law ensuing soon after his marriage, he acquired a large addition to his estate, but the share of debt which fell to him was £3,749 12s. He sold property immediately to pay it. The payments for this property were made in paper money, which he deposited in the loan office, and received it back again at a depreciation out to him, of one for forty. He sold again in 1785 and 1792, to discharge the debt, with its accumulated interest. This swept nearly half of his estate. He was absent from his estate, as Minister to France, Secretary of State, Vice-President and President from 1782 to 1809—27 years, with the exception of four years, from 1793 to 1797, which he devoted to his farms. He returned in his old age to be hunted down by the reputation he had won in the service of his country. Twelve years before his death, he remarked to me, in conversation, that if he lived long enough he would beggar his family—that the number of persons he was compelled to entertain would devour his estate; many bringing letters from his ancient friends, and all coming with respectful feelings, he could not shut his door in their faces. A heavy loss by indorsing for a friend in 1819, and the extreme depression in the value of property, when it became necessary to bring his into market, completed the catastrophe, and verified his anticipations. [Here follows the account of Mr. Jefferson's last illness and death, commencing at page 543 of this volume, and it comprises the entire remaining portion of the
TH. J. RANDolph.
APPENDIX No. XXXVII. Vol. III. p. 564. The Albemarle Resolutions vindicating Mr. Jefferson from Posthumous Slanders.
A distinguished clergyman of the Episcopal Church visited Charlottesville, in the spring of 1840, and circumstances threw him among the coterie, named in the text, so hostile to Mr. Jefferson.
He heard all the exploded tales of a life-time, brought out fresh—reaffirmed— “told with a cirumstance” against the latter. Accordingly, in a letter which was published in the Episcopal Recorder, in Philadelphia, he stated, in substance, that he found Mr. Jefferson's character was held in aversion in the neighborhood in which he lived and died—that he there heard more against it than he had ever heard before.
This publication found its way back to Charlottesville. The editor of the Whig paper (opposed to the party with which Mr. Jefferson had acted in politics) called public attention to it, and we think it was he who first suggested that a meeting of the citizens of the county be held on the subject. The proposal at once met favor. The high-minded men of the Whig party felt that it was time to vindicate their party, their county, and themselves from all suspicion of countenancing assaults on Mr. Jefferson's memory, which, howeyer easily disproved, and contemptible where they were made, acquired a degree of importance in other places, because they purportod to have the sanction of Mr. Jefferson's former neighbors. And it is for he latter reason solely, that we refer to these petty aggressions, and the rebuke hey called forth. The proposed meeting was held on the 18th of July, 1840. Much feeling was lanifested—the Whig gentlemen of the county taking the lead in the proceedings. t was resolved to hold a subsequent meeting, and to appoint a committee of twentyne to report thereat the sense of the county on the attacks made on Mr. Jefferson. he committee comprised the most distinguished gentlemen of Albemarle—leading ld eminent men in different religious sects—persons who had held important lices, and who were known throughout the State, and, in some instances, throughit a much wider sphere, as civilians and politicians. They were William C. Rives, Lucian Minor, Thomas Wood, Thomas W. Maury, chmond Terrell, Isaac A. Coles, John T. Brown, John H. Craven, John Timberke, Robert H. Carter, Allan W. Magruder, Gen. William F. Gordon, Col. Nimrod amham, Charles J. Merriwether, Col. Thomas Durrett, Walter Coles, Reuben tury, Col. George W. Kinsolving, Thomas H. Brown, Richard Gamble, and Alonzo och. The proceedings of the adjourned meeting were thus contemporaneously publed under the authority of its officers: “At a very numerous meeting of the people of Albemarle, at their Court House Charlottesville, on the 3d of August, 1840 (being court-day), held pursuant to call made by a preliminary meeting of July 18th, in order to consider a recent lication in the (Philadelphia) Episcopal Recorder, reflecting upon Thomas erson : “The assembly was called to order by Gen. Wm. F. Gordon, who briefly recited wrong done by the aforementioned publication to the memory of Mr. Jefferson, to the people of his county, in ascribing to them feelings utterly at war with reverence which they cherish for him, and suggested the tone and character of vindication that became them. Then, on the motion of Gen. Gordon, Col. mham was called to the chair, and Mr. Lucian Minor appointed Secretary. “Mr. William C. Rives, as Chairman of the Committee of 21, appointed at the minary meeting, then reported the following preamble and resolution, which unanimously adopted by the meeting, viz.: The citizens of Albemarle, here assembled, have seen with deep and painful *t, certain strictures on the character and memory of Mr. Jefferson, contained etter of the Reverend , written from Charlottesville, under date of the May last, and published in the Episcopal Recorder of the 13th June. Having made parties, in some sort, to this posthumous disparagement of their illustriountryman by the ascription of sentiments of peculiar ‘aversion and want of ct for his name, to the very neighborhood in which he lived and died,' and the writer alleges he found his character worse than even he, with the most orable prepossessions, ever conceived it to be—they feel themselves called on olemn duty to the dead, to disavow for themselves all privity or participation in ntiments here imputed. If Mr. Jefferson, like other men who have passed rh long and busy lives, should have had the misfortune to create some indivinmities, it was hoped that even these had long since been silenced and disat the sacred precincts of the tomb. But that there ever was, among the body of his neighbors and countymen, any other sentiment towards him ne of professed gratitude for his services to the cause of American freedom dmiration (in which the whole world partook), of his character as one of the and most sagacious champions of human rights, and of cordial respect for him in the relations of social life—no one, it is believed, who has had an opportunity of personally knowing the true state of the facts, will venture to assert. “History, indeed, has preserved an emphatic and touching testimony borne to his merits, in these respects, by the body of his countymen, thirty-one years ago, in their address of welcome to him on his return among them, after his retirement from the Presidency. Who, among us, can have forgotten the eloquent and affecting appeal he then made, with the erectness of conscious integrity, to the ‘triers of the vicinage’—those who had been ‘the eye-witnesses and observers' of his daily life ‘Of you, my neighbors,' he said, ‘I may ask in the face of the world.” —whose ox have I taken, or whom have I defrauded? Whom have I oppressed, or from whose hand have I received a bribe to blind mine eyes there with ?' The same testimony, which the people of Albemarle then zealously bore to the living citizen and statesman, we their descendants and successors, this day feel ourselves solemnly impelled by our duty to the dead, to reiterate and renew. “In vindicating the memory of Mr. Jefferson from the injurious representations above referred to (representations originating, as we hope, in unintentional error on the part of Dr. ), we are not to be considered as either justifying or criticising the opinions of Mr. Jefferson on the subject of our holy religion, with whose promises and precepts a faith, sacredly cherished, has indissolubly united the dearest hopes and interests of many of us. But this consideration does not, in our view, cancel the obligations of truth and candor, nor should it withhold the award of discriminative justice to a great public benefactor and patriot, who lived and died among us, and with the monuments of whose useful labors the history and archives of the nation, the Statute-book of Virginia, and the very face of our land, and especially our own portion of it, are profusely covered over. “Resolved, therefore, that the foregoing declaration be adopted as an expression of the sense of this meeting, on the occasion which has brought us together; and that copies of it, together with this resolution, attested by the signatures of the President and Secretary of the meeting, be furnished for publication to the newspapers printed in this place, and in the City of Richmond. “Attest,
“N. BRAMHAM, Chairman. “LuciaN MINor, Secretary.”
We have struck out the name of the author of the letter published in the Episcopal Recorder, wherever it occurs in these proceedings. He acted in perfect good faith in the first instance, and has in the spirit of a Christian and a gentleman voluntarily and frankly made ample retraction and reparation for all unintentional error. His name is by far too conspicuous to be concealed from those who desire to trace it out; but we at least will not aid to place it before the world in what we regard as purely an adventitious and disagreeable connection.
The reverend gentleman placed in our hands the following paper:
To HENRY S. RANDALL.
“In any reference which you may make in your memoir of Mr. Jefferson to certain resolutions adopted at a meeting in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 1840, occasioned by the publication of a letter from me in the Episcopal Recorder in Phila. delphia, permit me also to say:
“That in that letter I stated only the fact of my having heard in Charlottesville assertions more derogatory to the character of Mr. Jefferson than I had ever heard before; I did not repeat those assertions, nor express any judgment of their truth—I did suppose them to be true, however, and therefore made no reserve in referring to them. I have since become convinced that they were not true. And I must now consider it my duty to express my regret that I was led in any way to refer to them in a public communication, and to withdraw all responsibility for their future propagation, believing them now to be unfounded imputations upon the private character of Mr. Jefferson.”
APPENDIX NO. XXXVIII.-Wol. III., p. 565. Correction in regard to Patrick Henry's action on the question of Independence.
Partly from a letter addressed by General Charles Lee to Mr. Henry, and partly from an omission, which could not have been expected, in Wirt's Life of Henry (to say nothing of other earlier historical productions), we were led into the error which is corrected below by one of the most candid and accurate historical investigators and critics of our country. We need not say with what deep gratification we insert the correction.
Norfolk, WA., January 15, 1858.
MY DEAR SIR: I have read the first volume of your Life of Jefferson with the deepest interest, but I would not have troubled you with a letter until I had read the forthcoming volumes, had I not seen an error into which you had fallen respecting Patrick Henry, which I hope it is not too late to correct. You speak of the backwardness of Henry in sustaining the measure of Independence in the Virginia Convention of May, 1776. ' You allude to the subject on three several occasions, and, for the sake of accuracy, I will quote your words. You say, rather doubtingly (vol. i. p. 128), “Would Wirt have claimed for Henry such a remarkable prescience in regard to the Declaration of Independence, had he known that a letter would one day see the light, which seems to conclusively show that Mr. Henry actually hesitated a little in regard to making that declaration when it was finally proposed ?” This is an interrogative, but demands an answer unfavorable to Henry. But, in a note on the page quoted above, you say: “As Mr. Henry did not oppose the resolution of independence in the Convention, he probably did not allow the views expressed to General Lee to become public. But this, perhaps, explains why, on this occasion of occasions, Henry's ‘supernatural voice’ was not heard.” And again, on page 141, you observe: “It might or might not have been foreseen that the ‘supernatural voice' of the old popular leader in the Convention (Henry) would remain silent.” You cite as your authority the letter of Gen. Charles Lee to Patrick Henry (Am. Archives, Fifth Series, vol. i., 96), dated May 7, 1776, in which Lee states the objections to an immediate declaration made by Henry in conversation the day before, and endeavors to refute them. With this letter I have been familiar since its publication, and I readily see how well adapted it is to lead astray. Yet, it does not, strictly speaking, authorize the assertion, or even an innuendo, that Henry was silent when the proposition of independence was about to be decided by the Virginia Convention. The statements of Lee in their utmost.