Extract from Thomas Jefferson to James Madison

I set out on this ground, which I suppose to be self evident, ‘that the earth belongs in usufruct to the living:’ that the dead have neither powers nor rights over it. the portion occupied by any individual ceases to be his when himself ceases to be, & reverts to the society.

RC (DLC: Madison Papers). PrC of RC (DLC). PrC (DLC). Tr (DLC); in hand of Peter Carr and signed by TJ. PrC of Tr (DLC). Published in PTJ, 15:392–98.