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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;
3 occurrences of jefferson cyclopedia
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6907. PRESIDENCY, Jefferson, Madison and.—[continued].
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3 occurrences of jefferson cyclopedia
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6907. PRESIDENCY, Jefferson, Madison and.—[continued].

In my letter * * * I
expressed my hope of the only change of position
I ever wished to see you make, and
I expressed it with entire sincerity, because
there is not another person in the United
States, who being placed at the helm of our
affairs, my mind would be so completely at
rest for the fortune of our political bark.
The wish, too, was pure, and unmixed with
anything respecting myself personally. For
as to myself, the subject had been thoroughly
weighed and decided on, and my retirement
from office had been meant from all office
high or low, without exception. I can say,
too, with truth, that the subject had not been
presented to my mind by any vanity of my
own. I know myself and my fellow citizens
too well to have ever thought of it. But the
idea was forced upon me by continual insinuations
in the public papers, while I was
in office. As all these came from a hostile
quarter, I knew that their object was to
poison the public mind as to my motives,
when they were not able to charge me with
facts. But the idea being once presented to
me, my own quiet required that I should face
it and examine it. I did so thoroughly, and
had no difficulty to see that every reason which
had determined me to retire from the office
I then held, operated more strongly against
that which was insinuated to be my object.
I decided then on those general grounds
which could alone be present to my mind at
the time, that is to say, reputation, tranquillity,
labor; for as to public duty, it could
not be a topic of consideration in my case.
If these general considerations were sufficient
to ground a firm resolution never to permit
myself to think of the office, or to be thought
of for it, the special ones which have
supervened on my retirement, still more insuperably
bar the door to it. My health is
entirely broken down within the last eight
months; my age requires that I should place
my affairs in a clear state; these are sound
if taken care of, but capable of considerable
dangers if longer neglected; and above all
things, the delights I feel in the society of
my family, and the agricultural pursuits in
which I am so eagerly engaged. The little
spice of ambition which I had in my younger
days has long since evaporated, and I set
still less store by a posthumous than present
name. In stating to you the heads of reasons
which have produced my determination, I do
not mean an opening for future discussion,
or that I may be reasoned out of it. The
question is forever closed with me; my sole
object is to avail myself of the first opening
ever given me from a friendly quarter (and
I could not with decency do it before), of
preventing any division or loss of votes,
which might be fatal to the republican interest.
If that has any chance of prevailing,
it must be by avoiding the loss of a single
vote, and by concentrating all its strength on
one object. Who this should be, is a question
I can more freely discuss with anybody
than yourself. In this I feel painfully the
loss of Monroe. Had he been here, I should
have been at no loss for a channel through
which to make myself understood, if I have
been misunderstood by anybody through the
instrumentality of Mr. Fenno and his abettors.—
To James Madison. Washington ed. iv, 116. Ford ed., vii, 8.
(M. April. 1795)