Oct 30, 2014 11:19 AM

Rare Jefferson letters go on display at NYC museum

The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) Twenty-one rarely seen letters by Thomas Jefferson have gone on display at the Museum of the City of New York.

The correspondence with Robert Livingston was written from 1800 to 1803.

Livingston was chancellor of New York state. He administered President George Washington's oath of office 12 years before Jefferson himself became president.

Jefferson's handwritten letters touch on important issues of the day including the Louisiana Purchase, the first steam engine and the Napoleonic Wars.

Jefferson also inquires about the unearthing of a mammoth skeleton in upstate New York.

Museum Director Susan Henshaw says the letters reveal Jefferson's wider legacy as an "all-around collector of knowledge."

They were donated to the museum in 1947 by Livingston's descendant Goodhue Livingston.

They'll be displayed through Dec. 5.


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