Author: Thomas Jefferson


Letter from Thomas Jefferson to William Henry Harrison (February 27, 1803)

In this February 27, 1803, letter, written by President Thomas Jefferson to the governor of the Indiana Territory, William Henry Harrison, Jefferson directs Harrison to buy land for white settlement from the Native Americans. The Indiana Territory was carved out of the Northwest Territory in 1800. Jefferson instructs Harrison to use trade to run up debt with the Native Americans so that they would be more inclined to sell off some of their lands. Two months later, the Louisiana Purchase was signed, transferring about 828,000 square miles of land west of the Indiana Territory to the United States.





A Summary View of the Rights of British America by Thomas Jefferson (1774)

In A Summary View of the Rights of British America, Thomas Jefferson lists a set of grievances against Parliament and King George III. Originally drafted in August 1774 as instructions for the Virginia delegates to the First Continental Congress, the tract was later published as a pamphlet in Williamsburg under the title A Summary View of the Rights of British America, and reprinted in Philadelphia and England. These pamphlets were published without Jefferson’s knowledge or supervision.