Envisaging the West: Thomas Jefferson and the Roots of Lewis and Clark


Letter from Thomas Jefferson to John Ledyard

Thomas Jefferson to John Ledyard, August 16, 1786
Thomas Jefferson Papers, Library of Congress
Thomas Jefferson writes to John Ledyard expressing hopes that his explorations will prove useful.

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Paris August 16, 1786


I saw Baron de Grimon yesterday at Versailles, and he told me he had received an answer from the Empress who declines the proposition made on your account. she thinks it chimerical. I am in hopes your execution of it from our side of the continent will prove the contrary. I thought it necessary to give you this information that you might suffer no response from expectations from that quarter. I wish you success in whatever enterprise you adopt and am Sir

your most obedt. humble sevt
Th: Jefferson