1816.072: Letters from Paris written by a Representative in Congress.

Published: 1816

Full Title: Letters from Paris, written during the period of the late accession and abdication of Napoleon. By a Representative in the Congress of the United States

Author: Robertson, Thomas Bolling (1779-1828).

Place Issued: Fredericksburg

Issuing Press: William F. Gray

Description: 210 pgs.; (12mo).


Robertson was then Louisiana's sole congressional representative; he had been part of the Virginia migration to the Louisiana Territory, particularly from Petersburg, after its purchase by Jefferson; as a friend of Fulwar Skipwith, the president's cousin and the former American consul to France, the pair developed extensive connections in France that brought Robertson to Paris after the close of the 13th Congress in April 1814; on that trip he observed the fall of Napoleon and his exile to Elba, as reported in the twenty-three letters published here. Most of Robertson's reportage was published originally in the Richmond Enquirer of Thomas Ritchie (September to December 1815), indicating that his American correspondent was one of his Virginia friends (Ritchie's introductory comments to the series are republished here); then Philadelphia publisher Matthew Carey reprinted that series as a pamphlet with the title Journal of events in Paris (Shaw & Shoemaker 35798); in producing this title, Gray joined the Washington bookseller Roger Chew Weightman to publish the whole of the correspondence; the pair employed Washington printer Edward De Krafft to print the work for them; the two resulting editions are typographically identical with exception of changes to the imprint text on the title page (Shaw & Shoemaker 38823 vs. 38060) reflecting the two places where each was to be sold and by whom. Robertson later served as attorney general and governor of Louisiana, before his life ended while serving as a U.S. district court judge for Louisiana; the Virginia-born Robertson died in his home state while visiting White Sulphur Springs in an effort to regain his health.

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