Martha Jefferson Randolph to Elizabeth Trist

This will be delivered to you My Dearest Friend by Mr. Robertson a young gentleman of uncommon merit and abilities. he is going to reside amongst you in a public capacity and where there is so much bad will be a comfort to your honest republican heart. I did not know untill late in the evening yesterday that he was to leave us this morning I shall therefore write to the last moment of his stay but that will be but short, and after a silence of three years to have to let slip so favorable an opportunity is as inexcusable as to have let this have been the first letter during so long an absence Mr Robertson will quiet all your political fears; his opinion of General Wilkinson I do not know, however this much I can assure you that in the present instance he has been considered as deserving the gratitude of his country in an eminent degree. no retrospective views ought to deprive a man of the honor due to so singular a service as he has rendered us, for allthough it is not believed that Burr could have done the mischief he projected yet certainly he would have done a great deal, and cost the country much blood and money. you have heard ere this of his acquital but of the indignation which it has excited you must be ignorant from the nature of your society, for I believe N. Orleans has become the asylum Not so much of the enemies of our government as of1 honor and morality. men who have2 forfeited all claims to the confidence of their country and are alike bankrupt in character and fortune. Those like the associates of Catiline build their hopes upon the ruin of their country but thank heaven there numbers are too small to do much mischief. being in the very focus as you are, you hear the voice only of that faction but our liberties rest upon too solid a foundation to be overthrown by a despicable set of bankrupts. Mr R has sent to hurry me down I can add but one sentence more the union between My Father and Col. Monroe has as yet resisted every attempt to weaken it, if the bonds are ever snapped it will be from the machinations of some of the brotherhood My Father told me to tell you though, that your fears upon that score were groundless. God bless you My Dear friend I am truly ashamed to send you such a scrawl of incoherent nonsence but better this than nothing. adieu believe me with unchangeable affection yours

M. R.

will you give My best affections to your daughter I see by the papers that she is married. may every blessing attend her and her dear little boy[s]. I must beg to be remembered to Mrs Brown, Harriet and Mr William Brown None stand higher in my estimation and very few indeed as high. do not shew My letters, in writing to you I chat with as little reserve as if we were really togather God bless you again

Typescript (ViHi: Elizabeth House Trist Papers, Mss2T738b2-3); undated; date conjectured from internal evidence.
1Typescript: “as of as of.”
2Typescript: “who have who have.”
Date Range
October 1, 1807 to December 31, 1807