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Letter from Thomas Jefferson to John Adams, 10 June 1815

Letter from Thomas Jefferson to John Adams, 10 June 1815

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    "I cannot live without books."

    In 1812 Jefferson decided to sell his personal library—then numbering 6,700 books—to the government to replace the Library of Congress, lost to fire when the British attacked Washington, D.C. The sale complete three years later, Jefferson composed this letter to his fellow patriot a month after his books arrived in the city.