To Sarah Savage Thatcher

    Washington, D.C.        4 March 1801

    My dear—

    All old things closed last night precisely on the minute of twelve oClock—& this day at the same time the new President made his speech, which you will read in the inclosed paper,1 and was sworn in office every body then went & made their manners to him & all is going on well.

    fig. 13. “A view of the Capitol of Washington,” by William Birch (ca. 1800). Courtesy of Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Birch (1755-1834), who studied in his native England under Sir Joshua Reynolds before immigrating to Philadelphia in 1794, executed this watercolor of his adopted country’s first permanent capitol around the time Congress first occupied it in November 1800. Only the Senate (north) wing had been completed. Despite the labors of the stonecutters in the foreground, Thatcher never saw the construction advance much beyond this stage before leaving Congress four months later.

    I have taken my things & come up to a house near the Capitol ready to start off at four oClock in the morning—The sun is now just seting & gloom hangs over the place—I long for four oClock—

    Have recd this moment yours of the 17th.

    most affectionately your

    * * *

    ALS, TFP