The American Founders and the American University
by Richard J. Behn
America's Founders founded more than a nation. They founded and formed its basic institutions and competed with each other in their efforts to devise new state and national constitutions. But the Republic they created demanded an educated citizenry and the Founders worked to create one. "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be," wrote Thomas Jefferson late in his life.
By nature, the American Founders were both readers and writers, noted historian William Lee Miller. They were born to self-improvement and study. For Founders like James Madison and Thomas Jefferson, books and libraries were particularly important. Miller wrote: "Madison was in some ways the most concentratedly bookish of them all. One of the moving moments, as it were, of the American story...[was] when these two young Virginians - in their thirties then, Jefferson, eight years the elder - made that deal about mutual services while he was in Paris as the representative of the fledgling nation. Madison would keep an eye on Jefferson's nephews; Jefferson would buy for Madison, in Paris those boxes of books."1
Jefferson also did a lot of book-buying for himself. When he returned from France in 1789, Jefferson shipped back 15 crates of books which he had bought while serving as the U.S. representative. "While residing in Paris," Jefferson wrote, "I devoted every afternoon I was disengaged, for a summer or two, in examining all the principal bookstores, turning over every book with my own hands, and putting by everything which related to America, and indeed whatever was rare and valuable in every science."2 (Eventually, Jefferson's library of 6,487 books was bought for the Library of Congress - to replace the books burned by the British when they sacked Washington in 1814.)
Jefferson's love of books and education was one shared with other Founders like Madison and Benjamin Franklin, who founded a lending library in Philadelphia in 1742 - and spawned other libraries in nearby communities. Three decades later, Franklin wrote that such libraries "improved the general conversation of the Americans, made the common tradesmen and farmers as intelligent as most gentlemen from other countries, and perhaps...contributed in some degree to the stand so generally made throughout the colonies in defense of their privileges."3
Unlike Franklin, who began a printer's apprenticeship at age 12, many of the Founders were fortunate to attend college - a privilege enjoyed by less than one percent of the men in the colonies. The family finances of Franklin and George Washington put a college education out of the question. Washington's father died when George was 11 - ending dreams of an English college education. Washington biographer Richard Norton Smith noted that "while his formal education consisted of a few months' tutoring in geography, composition, the science of numbers, and the arts of deportment, Washington would travel more extensively and meet a wider range of people than any American of his age. From each experience he gained something, and neither time nor the dulling incense of public education would dim his curiosity."4
Smith wrote that Washington was "a rigorous student in the school of self-improvement."5 That began, noted biographer Richard Brookhiser, with Washington's reading - even though colleagues sometimes denigrated what he read. "Washington had, at his death, a library of nine hundred volumes, and despite Jefferson's comments, many authors besides agriculturalists and historians were represented in it, including Jefferson himself. For almost forty years, Washington kept up with the controversial political literature of North America at a time when it was of the highest order," wrote Brookhiser.6
Thomas Jefferson had more advantages - even before he went to the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg. Virginia's only college deteriorated after Jefferson's graduation, however. Fellow Virginian James Madison consequently went to New Jersey's Princeton College. There, he rushed to complete his degree in two years but spent another year in further study with college President John Witherspoon - and also recovering the health he had dissipated in his concentrated study. Fellow Virginian John Marshall lacked the advantages of a university education, but attended some law lectures at William & Mary before studying for the bar - and future appointment as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court.
Recent immigrant Alexander Hamilton was unsuccessful in persuading Princeton to allow him to pursue his education at his own accelerated pace. Instead, King's College (later Columbia) admitted him as a sophomore - a recognition of his intelligence and the fact that he was several years older than the average 14-year-old freshman. There in New York City, Hamilton studied classical languages, logic, physics, history, and rhetoric - and pursued his Christian faith with an evangelical fervor. As a 19-year-old college student in 1774, Hamilton emerged as one of the city's most eloquent critics of British policy - in speech and print. But when the Tory president of King's College came under mob attack, Hamilton delayed it long enough to allow his mentor's escape. It was hardly the end to his education. Biographer Ron Chernow noted, even during his military service in the Revolutionary War, Hamilton was a "self-improving autodidact, employing all his spare time to better himself."7
John Adams's parents decided early that their eldest son would get a Harvard education but Adams was a reluctant student. Fearing he would fail the admissions exam at Harvard College, he almost turned his horse homeward before arriving in Cambridge. But to Adams's surprise, he passed the test - setting the stage for his sons and grandsons to attend Harvard as well. Biographer John Ferling wrote of Adams: "When he discovered that he was a capable student, his earlier timidity subsided and school ceased to be the burden it once had been. He later spoke of these times as being 'gay, gorgeous,' a period that 'invigorated my Body, and exhilerated [sic] my soul.' The change was so sudden and dramatic that he could not explain it. His newfound 'Love of Books and...fondness for Study' was a 'Curiosity,' he admitted."8 Like Jefferson and Madison, Adams went on to study law.
When John Quincy Adams was admitted to Harvard in 1786, his father clearly hoped to he would enjoy the experience - but benefit from it as well: "Give me leave to congratulate you on your Admission into the seat of the Muses, our dear Alma Mater, where I hope you will find a Pleasure and Improvement equal to your Expectations....You are breathing now in the Atmosphere of Science and Litterature, on floating Particles of which will mix with your whole Mass of Blood and Juices. Every Visit you make to the Chamber or study of a Schollar, you learn something."9 His son must have liked Harvard because he later returned there as the "Boylston Professor of Rhetoric and Oratory."
Another Massachusetts resident, Benjamin Franklin, had wanted to go to Harvard., but he had to settle for honorary master's degrees from Harvard and Yale - in recognition of his scientific experiments. Instead of college, Franklin's adolescent education was self-directed. While a printer's apprentice for his brother, Franklin was "made ashm'd of my ignorance in figures, which I had twice failed in learning when at school, I took Cocker's book of Arithmetick, and went through the whole by myself with great ease. I also read Seller's and Shermy's books of Navigation, and became acquainted with the little geometry they contain; but never proceeded far in that science. And I read about this time Locke on Human Understanding, and the Art of Thinking by Messrs. Du Port Royal." Franklin recalled: "From a child I was fond of reading, all the little money that came into my hands was ever laid out in books."10
The Founders understood the way that reading and education would change the former British colonies. While representing those colonies in Paris in 1980, John Adams wrote his wife: "I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain."11
Adams did not wait until adolescence to influence his own children's education. He wrote his wife that it was their joint obligation "to elevate the minds of our children and exalt their courage; to accelerate and animate their industry and activity; to excite in them...an ambition to excel in every capacity, faculty and virtue. If we suffer their minds to grovel and creep in infancy, they will grovel all their lives."12
Founders like Adams took a keen interest in developing the new nation's universities. While Adams was representing America in the Netherlands, son John Quincy was sent to study at Leyden University. Adams wrote him to urge John Quincy's attention to his studies - as well as to studying the university itself - "everything in it that may be initiated in the universities of your own country."13
Adams later admitted to Jefferson that he lagged behind his colleague in systematic thinking about education: "Education! Oh Education! The greatest grief of my heart and the great affliction of my life! To my mortification I must confess that I have never closely thought, or very deliberately reflected upon the subject, which never occurs to me now without producing a deep sigh, a heavy groan and sometimes tears. My cruel destiny separated me from my children almost continually from their birth to their manhood."14
President George Washington had no children of his own, but was devoted to education. One of his fondest dreams was the creation of a national university to be located in the new capital on the banks of the Potomac It was a dream President Washington emphasized in his final address to Congress in December 1796: "Amongst the motives to such an institution, the assimilation of the principles, opinions, and manners of our country men by the common education of a portion of our youth from every quarter well deserves attention. The more homogenous our citizens can be made in these particulars the greater will be our prospect of permanent union; and a primary object of such a national institution should be the education of our youth in the science of government. In a republic what species of knowledge can be equally important and what duty more pressing on its legislature than to patronize a plan for communicating it to those who are to be the future guardians of the liberties of the country?"15
Washington wrote Hamilton that he hoped it would attract those wanting to "receive the polish of Erudition in the Arts, Sciences and Belles Lettres" and nurture their patriotism as well. Most important, observed historian Harold Bradley, "it would serve as a meeting ground for students from every part of the United States, and Washington hoped that these young men would return to their homes convinced that there 'was not that cause for those jealousies and prejudices' which then existed in the several sections. In education as in politics, Washington's thinking was dominated by his intense nationalism and his fear of sectional rivalries."16
"Washington did not want learning for its own sake, but political education in the principles and practice of self-government: The same kind of education he had given himself," wrote Washington biographer Richard Brookhiser, who observed that the national university "was the one policy prescription of his that never bore fruit."17 But Washington did give up on the idea easily. Only Alexander Hamilton's influence persuaded him to eliminate it from his "Farewell address."18 Washington even attempted to bring it to the university to fruition after his death - willing fifty shares of the Potomac Company to be used for a university "to do away [with] local attachments and state prejudices..."19
Like Washington, John Adams also saw the civic value of education. "You will ever remember that all the end of study is to make you a good man and a useful citizen," Adams wrote his son. "This will ever be the sum total of the advice of your affectionate father."20 Jefferson himself believed that "knowledge is safety, knowledge is happiness." And like Adams, he connected education "to the practice of the social duties."
Adams believed in a broad education. "There are two types of education," he wrote. "One should teach us how to make a living, And the other how to live."21 Like Jefferson, John Adams was a big believer in the classics. When Dr. Benjamin Rush, a fellow signer of the Declaration of Independence, argued that the study of classical languages should be replaced by modern languages, Adams rebuked his friend: "Your labors will be as useless as those of Tom Paine against the Bible."22 Adams wrote Dr. Rush: "I do most cordially hate you for writing against Latin, Greek, and Hebrew. I will never forgive you until you repent, retract, and reform. No! Never!"23
Both President Washington and Secretary of the Treasury Hamilton took a keen interest in establishing a military academy during Washington's two terms. According to Hamilton biographer Broadus Mitchell, "Hamilton declared that the formation of a military academy in the United States was especially important, since the country was not expected to maintain a large standing army. Therefore, it was necessary 'to substitute the elements of an army for the thing itself.' 'Proper nurseries' must prepare a competent number of officers, how, in emergencies sure to arise, could expand the organization, and be, as he said elsewhere, 'the bones of an Army in case of need."24
Washington argued: "However pacific the general policy of a nation may be, it ought never to be without an adequate stock of military knowledge for emergencies. The 1st would impair the energy of its character, and both would hazard its safety or expose it to greater evils when war could not be avoided; besides that, war might often not depend upon its own choice. In proportion as the observance of pacific maxims might exempt a nation from the necessity of practicing the rules of the military art ought to be its care in preserving and transmitting, by proper establishments, the knowledge of that art."25
According to Hamilton biographer Ron Chernow, "Hamilton's elaborate plans contemplated five schools specializing in military science, engineering, cavalry, infantry, and the navy. With Hamiltonian thoroughness, he listed the necessary instructors right down to two drawing masters, an architect, and a riding master. He was no less directive when it came to curricula, declaring that the engineering school should teach 'Fluxions, conic sections, hydraulics, hydrostatics, and pneumatics."26
In his last message to Congress, President Washington again pushed for establishment of a military academy, arguing that "a nation....ought never to be without an adequate stock of military knowledge for emergencies."27 Washington biographer Richard Norton Smith noted: "Just two days before his death, Washington complimented his protégé's intention to establish a military academy at West Point - as well he might, given his long-standing advocacy of the idea - while begging off any formal endorsement of Hamilton's plan 'as it has already been submitted to the Secretary of War, through whom it would naturally be laid before Congress.'"28
Hamilton's dream for West Point was not realized until the administration of Thomas Jefferson, who had opposed creation of the military academy when the two rivals served in Washington's cabinet. Jefferson's interest by then was increasingly focused on developing the nation's young talent. In 1794, Jefferson advocated relocating the "College of Geneva" from Switzerland to Virginia. In his annual message of 1806, President Jefferson proposed a national university in sciences.
Hamilton's own post-cabinet efforts to improve education were centered in New York State where he practiced law. In 1793, Hamilton supported the creation of a school for Native Americans near Albany - which later became Hamilton College. He also helped fund the creation of the Erasmus Hall Academy in Brooklyn. Hamilton biographer Ron Chernow has written: "In a quest to improve education in the state, he worked to create the Board of Regents and served on it from 1784 to 1787. In this capacity, he was also a trustee of his alma mater, now renamed Columbia College to banish any royal remnants, and received from it an honorary master-of-arts degree."29
Earlier, Benjamin Franklin had taken a leading role in setting a college in Philadelphia. Franklin began his planning in 1743 and in 1749 set out his ideas in "Proposals Relating to the Education of Youth in Pennsylvania." In his pamphlet, Franklin wrote:
With the whole should be constantly inculcated that Benignity of Mind, which shows itself in search for and seizing every Opportunity to serve and to oblige; and is the Foundation of what is called GOOD BREEDING; highly useful to the Possessor and most agreeable to all.
The idea of what is true Merit should also be often presented to Youth, explain'd and impress'd on the Minds, as consisting in an Inclination joined with an Ability to serve Mankind, one's Country, Friends and Family; which Ability is (with the Blessing of God) to be acquit'd or greatly increas'd by true Learning; and should indeed be the great Aim and End of all Learning.30
Along with Jefferson and Hamilton, Franklin demonstrated a passion for higher education planning. Franklin biographer Walter Isaacson wrote: "The pamphlet was crammed with footnotes citing ancient scholars and his own experience on everything from swimming to writing style. Like any good Enlightenment thinker, Franklin loved order and precise procedures."
The future University of Pennsylvania began its work as the Pennsylvania Academy in 1751. Like Jefferson in Virginia several decades later, Franklin favored a college without church links. According to biographer Verner W. Crane, Franklin "proposed for the students, whatever their intended occupations, thorough instruction in their native tongue, by the study of English grammar and the reading and imitation of the best writers...and also a broad program of generation education, beginning with history and leading (through history) to geography, chronology, ancient customs, morality, oratory, religion, laws and constitutions, and logic - a scheme, he believed, that met the needs of the colony and the desires of many of the [Academy funders] than the rigid classical curriculum."31
Unlike college graduates Adams and Jefferson, Franklin was not a fan of the classics. However, Franklin's views were not always shared by the Philadelphia institution's other officers and trustees. At the end of Franklin's life, according to biographer H.W. Brands, Franklin tried to redirect the University of Pennsylvania: "'I am the only one of the original trustees now living, and I am just stepping into the grave myself,' he declared, by the way of reintroducing himself to the debate over what the young scholars should learn. As at the founding, he rejected the teaching of Latin and Greek to any but specialized scholars as an anachronism from an age that knew no other literature. Referring to the French habit of carrying of carrying hats on the arm, simply as ornaments, long after wigs displaced them from French pates, Franklin dubbed the vestigial teaching of the classics 'the chapeau bras of modern literature.'"32 By then, Franklin's own grandson, Benjamin Franklin Bache, had graduated from the university. And Benny promptly followed his grandfather into the printing business.
The Founder best known for his interest in education did not have a son to educate - at least not one he acknowledged. But he was consumed with the education of his daughters and grandchildren - and other young men who came into his social orbit. After leaving the presidency, Jefferson wrote: "A part of my occupation, and by no means the least pleasing is the direction of the studies of such young men as ask it. They place themselves in the neighboring village, and have the use of my library and counsel, and make a part of my society. In advising the course of their reading, I endeavor to keep their attention fixed on the main objects of all science, the freedom and happiness of man. So that coming toe bear a share in the councils and government of their country, they will keep ever in view the sole objects of all legitimate government."33
For Thomas Jefferson, the University of Virginia - as for Franklin with the University of Pennsylvania - was one of his proudest achievements. In Jefferson's case, it was one of only three accomplishments he ordered to be listed on his tombstone. And in his case, it was the culmination of a life-long concern with improving education in his home state.
Biographer Phillips Russell wrote: "Losing confidence in his alma mater, William and Mary College, because of its class and religious bias, he had begun while still a young man to dream of setting up in his native state an institution of learning not inferior to those of Europe."34
Jefferson biographer Noble E. Cunningham, Jr., wrote: "Jefferson had been developing his ideas about a university in Virginia for years. As early as 1800, when some movement toward establishing a state university seemed to be emerging, he began collecting ideas about what a university should be from Joseph Priestly, [Pierre Samuel] du Pont de Nemours, and others, though he already had rather firm notions of the kind of university he wanted to see established. He wanted a university 'on a plan so broad and liberal and modern, as to be worth patronizing with the public support, and be a temptation to the youth of other States to come and drink of the cup of knowledge and fraternize with us."35 In 1802, Jefferson wrote artist Charles Willson Peale about his concept for a Virginia university "on the most extensive and liberal scale that our circumstances would call for and our faculties meet."36
It was, however, nearly a decade after President Jefferson left office that he got around to the real work on his university project. He then spent much of the final decade of his life developing the University of Virginia. In 1818, Governor James P. Preston appointed to a 21-member commission to establish the location of the University of Virginia. For the commission's meeting at tavern in Rockfish Gap in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Jefferson prepared a comprehensive plan. Like Hamilton's dreams for West Point, Jefferson's ideas for the University of Virginia were remarkably detailed. According to biographer Cunningham, "The Rockfish Gap report contained Jefferson's final plan for the University of Virginia, spelling out in detail the arrangement of the buildings, the subjects of instruction, the composition of the faculty and its governance, the broad purposes of the institution, the specific justifications for its curriculum, and a set of bylaws for its operation. He proposed a faculty of ten professors, and though he grouped the fields of learning into ten categories, he recommended that the fields for which each professor would be responsible be left to the Board of Visitors. In conformity to the principles of religious freedom, he proposed no professor of divinity. This remarkable document was the mature product of years of contemplation on the subjection of education in a republic."37
"Two truly distinctive features of the university were very much a projection of Jefferson's personality. First, most of the traditional rules and curricular requirements that governed the operation of all other American colleges were completely abandoned. There were no distinctions among freshmen, sophomores or upperclassmen," wrote historian Joseph Ellis. "No specific courses or programs of study were required."38 Ellis noted "One of the most distinctive features of the University of Virginia was its disavowal of any religious affiliation - virtually all the major colleges in the nation up to this time had defined themselves as seminaries for particular denominations or religious sects - and Jefferson went so far as to prohibit the teaching of theology altogether."39
Jefferson quickly scored two triumphs - acceptance of his plan and election as head of the commission. From the outset of the university's planning, Jefferson was committed to academic freedom. In his report, Jefferson report: "The human character is susceptible of other incitements to correct conduct more worthy of employ and of better effect. Pride of character, laudable ambition, and moral dispositions are innate correctives of the indiscretions of that lively age. A system founded on reason and comity will be more likely to nourish in the minds of our youth the combined spirit of order and self-respect."40
Jefferson sought to recruit many of the new university's instructors from Europe. (Friend John Adams did not approve - arguing that Europeans carried erroneous religious views.) Biographer Philips Russell noted that Jefferson established "two requirements: each professor should be educated as to the sciences generally' and he must be 'of the first order.' He well knew that teachers of the first order must come from the Old World, that they would not be attracted by dismal barracks of a log college such as was then popular in certain parts of the United States; hence his insistence that the university not be opened until visitors could gain an impression of the dignity of the whole arrangement."41 In 1820 Jefferson told the planning board: "This institution will be based on the illimitable freedom of the human mind. For here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it."42
Although in his 70s and suffering from a wide variety of physical ailments, Jefferson as the University's rector insisted on designing and overseeing all aspects of its development. According to biographer Russell, Jefferson's "fierce determination was applied even to minor details, such as preparing tests, deeds and contracts; designing the gardens in the rear of the ten pavilions; building the waving walls around them to a height of six or seven feet though originally only half a brick in thickness; and the ordering of a college clock which must be heard at a distance of two miles, because this will ensure its being heard at Charlottesville."43 Jefferson's interests extended to textbooks - which he thought best chosen by professors - except in the field of political science - where Thomas Jefferson believed himself a better judge. He even compiled a list of 6,860 books to be purchased for the university library.
Biographer Cunningham wrote that Jefferson "was firm in his belief that the university should not open until all the buildings, including the library, were completed and paid for. Otherwise, it would never get the funds for his primary goal, a distinguished faculty. He was unwilling to compromise on either the building plans or on the faculty. 'The great object of our aim from the beginning has been to make this establishment the most eminent in the United States,'..."44
Unlike Washington who desired to create a truly national institution, Jefferson wanted to create a specifically Virginia one. (In his sixth annual message to Congress, Jefferson had proposed a constitutional amendment to allow creation of a national university.) Jefferson was chagrined that neighboring state already had an institution, Transylvania University, which outshone any institution in Virginia. He lamented that a favorite grandson had to leave the state to attend college. Jefferson had a parochial outlook on the virtues of his home state, stating a "decided preference for the Virginia character and principles. All the science in the world would not to me as a parent compensate the loss of that open, manly, character, which Virginians possess and in which the most liberal and enlightened of the Eastern people are deplorably deficient. I have known many of their conspicuous men intimately, and I have never yet seen on who could march directly to his object. Some view at home or at the seat of Government entered all their projects and subjected them continually to the commission of acts which would tinge with shame the face of a Virginian."
In 1826, a year before his death, the University of Virginia finally opened to students and faculty. Jefferson, according to biographer Alf J. Mapp, Jr., "realized his dream of half a century. And to do so he had triumphed over public apathy and public antagonism, a financial panic and a lingering economic depression. He had transcended the ocean barrier that separated America from the great centers of Western learning. He had charmed, cajoled, shamed - and yes, sometimes tricked - the reluctant into action. He had the valuable help of able people...but he himself had conceived the idea; designed the buildings and grounds so beautifully integrated that they became a landmark in the history of landscaping and architecture; personally surveyed the lots and supervised the construction; hired the faculty; and this with a single eye to quality in spite of all the pressures of local loyalties and national chauvinism; composed the curriculum, and it was an innovative; selected the books for the library in every major category of knowledge; served as rector, presiding always with courtesy and tact but always dominating the proceedings and at the same time, as secretary, recording the actions taken under his guidance, all the while reanimating the flagging spirts of those who labored with him."45
Through a spyglass from Monticello, the aging Jefferson could look down on his beloved university with "constant gratification to my sight."46 Through his experiences and reflections, Jefferson looked forward to the future of universities across America. Only two months before he died, Jefferson wrote: "We do not expect our schools to turn out their alumni already enthroned on the pinnacles of their respective sciences, but only so far advance in each as to be able to pursue them by themselves, and to become Newtons and Laplaces by energies and perseverance to be continued through life."47
- William Lee Miller, The Business of May Next: James Madison and the Founding, p. 50.
- Noble E. Cunningham, Jr., In Pursuit of Reason: The Life of Thomas Jefferson, p. 159.
- Verner W. Crane, Benjamin Franklin and a Rising People, p. 33.
- Richard Norton Smith, Patriarch, p, 4.
- Richard Norton Smith, Patriarch, p. 269.
- Richard Brookhiser, Founding Father, p. 139.
- Ron Chernow, Alexander Hamilton, p. 110.
- John Ferling, John Adams, p. 18.
- Jack Shepherd, The Adams Chronicles: Four Generations of Greatness, p. 142.
- Benjamin Franklin, The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, p. 9.
- Page Smith, John Adams, Volume I 1734-1784, p. 220.
- David McCullough, John Adams, p. 259.
- Alf J. Mapp, Jr., Thomas Jefferson: Passionate Pilgrim, p. 248.
- http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/presiden/sou/washs08.htm (A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents. Prepared under the direction of the Joint Committee on printing, of the House and Senate. Pursuant to an Act of the Fifty Second Congress of the United States. New York : Bureau of National Literature, Inc., 1897)
- James Morton Smith, editor, George Washington: A Profile, (Harold W. Bradley, "The Political Thinking of George Washington"), p. 159-160.
- Richard Brookhiser,
- Richard Norton Smith, Patriarch, p. 277.
- Richard Norton Smith, Patriarch, p 346.
- David McCullough, John Adams, p. 260.
- http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/presiden/sou/washs08.htm (A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents. Prepared under the direction of the Joint Committee on printing, of the House and Senate. Pursuant to an Act of the Fifty Second Congress of the United States. New York : Bureau of National Literature, Inc., 1897).
- David McCullough, John Adams, p. 591.
- Page Smith, John Adams, Volume II 1784-1826, p. 1085.
- Broadus Mitchell, Alexander Hamilton: The Revolutionary Years, p. 357.
- Ron Chernow, Alexander Hamilton, p. 647.
- Richard Norton Smith, Patriarch: George Washington and the New American Nation, p. 287.
- Richard Norton Smith, Patriarch: George Washington and the New American Nation, p. 343.
- Ron Chernow, Alexander Hamilton, p. 206.
- Esmond Wright, Franklin of Philadelphia, p. 40.
- Verner W. Crane, Benjamin Franklin and a Rising People, p. 34.
- H.W. Brands, The First American: The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin, p. 708.
- Alf J. Mapp, Jr., Thomas Jefferson: Passionate Pilgrim, p. 205.
- Phillips Russell, Jefferson, Champion of the Free Mind, p. 335.
- Noble E. Cunningham, Jr., In Pursuit of Reason: The Life of Thomas Jefferson, p. 336.
- Alf J. Mapp, Jr., Thomas Jefferson: Passionate Pilgrim, p. 19.
- Noble E. Cunningham, Jr., In Pursuit of Reason: The Life of Thomas Jefferson, p. 340.
- Joseph J. Ellis, American Sphinx, p. 285.
- Joseph J. Ellis, American Sphinx, p. 283.
- Phillips Russell, Jefferson: Champion of the Free Mind, p.339.
- Phillips Russell, Jefferson: Champion of the Free Mind, p.342.
- Dumas Malone, Jefferson and His Time: The Sage of Monticello, p. 417-418.
- Phillips Russell, Jefferson: Champion of the Free Mind, p.341.
- Noble E. Cunningham, Jr., In Pursuit of Reason: The Life of Thomas Jefferson, p. 342.
- Alf J. Mapp, Jr., Thomas Jefferson: Passionate Pilgrim, p. 334.
- Alf J. Mapp, Jr., Thomas Jefferson: Passionate Pilgrim, p. 314.
- Dumas Malone, Jefferson and His Time: The Sage of Monticello, p. 486.