Lot #4
Thomas Jefferson Autograph Letter Signed as President

President Jefferson orders payment to his White House butler
This lot has closed

Estimate: $6000+


President Jefferson orders payment to his White House butler

ALS as president, signed “Th: Jefferson,” one page, 7.25 x 4.75, November 30, 1802. Handwritten letter to "Mr. John Barnes" in Georgetown, ordering payment to his trusty White House butler, Etienne Lemaire. In full: "Pay to Mr. Lemaire or order one hundred & thirty five dollars three cents for value received on account." In very good to fine condition, with old adhesive residue, a few stains, and some small professional repairs.

Jefferson hired Etienne Lemaire as his second White House maître d'hôtel, or 'steward,' in late 1801, charging him with management of the domestic staff, supervision of the dinner service and dessert, handling of household accounts, and shopping for groceries and other provisions. Upon parting ways with Jefferson's retirement to Monticello in 1809, he wrote Lemaire to express 'the sense of my attachment to you & satisfaction with your services. They were faithful, & skilful, and your whole conduct so marked with good humour, industry, sobriety & economy as never to have given me one moment’s dissatisfaction: and indeed were I to be again in a situation to need services of the same kind, yours would be more acceptable to me than those of any person living.'

Auction Info

  • Auction Title: Fine Autograph and Artifacts
  • Dates: #618 - Ended October 13, 2021

This item is Pre-Certified by PSA/DNA
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