Letter to John Holmes
Letter to John Holmes 1
Awakened to the looming crisis over slavery by the Missouri Compromise, Jefferson foresees in this letter that the Compromise was far from the final word on the matter.
April 22, 1820
I thank you, dear Sir, for the copy you have been so kind as to send me of the letter to your constituents on the Missouri question. It is a perfect justification to them. I had for a long time ceased to read newspapers, or pay any attention to public affairs, confident they were in good hands, and content to be a passenger in our bark to the shore from which I am not distant. But this momentous question, like a fire bell in the night, awakened and filled me with terror. I considered it at once as the ...