Home The Core Pillar American Founders Notes on the state of Virginia
Notes on the state of Virginia
The Core Pillar - Core American Founders
Written by Thomas Jefferson   
Article Index
Notes on the state of Virginia
Page 2
All Pages

Virginia is bounded on the East by the Atlantic; on the North by a line of latitude, crossing the Eastern Shore through Watkins's Point, being about 37° 57' North latitude; from thence by a straight line to Cinquac, near the mouth of Patowmac; thence by the Patowmac, which is common to Virginia and Maryland, to the first fountain of its Northern branch; thence by a meridian line, passing through that fountain till it intersects a line running East and West, in latitude 39° 43' 42.4", which divides Maryland from Pennsylvania, and which was marked by Messrs. Mason and Dixon; thence by that line, and a continuation of it westwardly to the completion of 5 degrees of longitude from the Eastern boundary of Pennsylvania, in the same latitude, and thence by a meridian line to the Ohio: on the West by the Ohio and Missisipi, to latitude 36° 30' North; and on the South by the line of latitude last mentioned.

QUERY I.

AN EXACT DESCRIPTION OP THE LIMITS AND BOUNDARIES OP THE STATE OF VIRGINIA ?

By admeasurements through nearly the whole of this last line, and supplying the unmeasured parts from good data, the Atlantic and Missisipi are found in this latitude to be 758 miles distant, equal to 13° 38' of longitude, reckoning 55 miles and 3,144 feet to the degree. This being our comprehension of longitude, that of our latitude, taken between this and Mason and Dixon's line, is 3° 13', 42.4", equal to 223.3 miles, supposing a degree of a great circle to be 69 m. 864 f., as computed by Cassini. These boundaries include an area somewhat triangular, of 121,525 square miles, whereof 79,650 lie westward of the Alleghaney mountains, and 57,034 westward of the meridian of the mouth of the Great Kanhaway. This State is therefore one-third larger than the islands of Great Britain and Ireland, which are reckoned at 88,357 square miles.

These limits result from—1. The ancient charters from the crown of England. 2. The grant of Maryland to the Lord Baltimore, and the subsequent determinations of the British Court as to the extent of that grant. 3. The grant of Pennsylvania to William Penn, and a compact between the General Assemblies of the Commonwealths of Virginia and Pennsylvania as to the extent of that grant. 4. The grant of Carolina, and actual location of its Northern boundary, by consent of both parties. 5. The treaty of Paris of 1763. 6. The confirmation of the charters of the neighboring States by the Convention of Virginia at the time of constituting their Commonwealth. 7. The cession made by Virginia to Congress of all the lands to which they had title on the North side of the Ohio.

  

A MAP, INCLUDING THE STATES OF VIRGINIA, MARYLAND,
DELAWARE AND PENNSYLVANIA.

A NEW EDITION,

PREPARED BY

 THE AUTHOR,

CoNTAINING SOTES A!O> PLATES NEvER BEFoRE PUBLISHED.

J. W. RANDOLPH,

121 MAIN STREET, RICHMOND, VA.

1853.

   Entered according to act of Congress, in the year 1853, by

J. W. RANDOLPH, In the Clerk's Office of the District Court in and for the Eastern District of V >.

 

PEEFACE OF THE PUBLISHER.

Thomas Jeeferson left at his -death a printed copy of his Notes on Virginia, containing many manuscript notes, several plates and a map, intended apparently for a new edition of the work. As an edition had then been recently published, it was deemed best to delay any further publication until the book should become scarce. It is now nearly out of print, and a general desire is expressed for another edition. With a view of gratifying this wish, Mr. Jefferson's executor, Thomas Jefferson Kandolph, has transferred to the publisher the materials prepared by the author for the new edition.

In making this preparation the author used a copy of the first edition, and thus inadvertently repeated an error in the narrative preceding Logan's speech, which had been corrected in a later edition. An historical statement making the correction, deduced by the author from certain documents, and the documents themselves, will be found in Appendix No. IV. They are taken from a re-print of the work in 1825.

 i

The manuscript notes of the present edition are numerous and interesting. Many are in foreign languages, and disclose the extensive erudition of the author. Professor Schele De Vere, the accomplished and learned incumbent of the Chair of Modern Languages of the University of Virginia, has been kind enough to translate the French, Spanish and Italian notes. These translations will be found in Appendix No. IV.

The circumstances under which the Notes on Virginia were written, are stated by the author in his preface. It may be well to add, that the foreigner of distinction to whom they were addressed was Mons. Barbe De Marbois, the Secretary of the French Legation in the United States, and that they were written while the author was confined to his room by an injury received from the falling of his horse.

The beauty of style, the accuracy of information, and the scientific research displayed in the Notes have made them a permanent part of our national literature. The publisher therefore conceives that in publishing a new edition of this admirable work, he is renewing a valuable contribution to that literature, and rendering a just tribute to the illustrious author.

September 13, 1853.



 
 

 

Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Free Talk Live