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Our Library of Thought

In 1771, young Robert Skipwith, sent a letter to Thomas Jefferson, requesting recommendations for his personal library.

“Let them be improving as well as amusing …. Let them amount to about five and twenty pounds sterling, or, if you think proper, to thirty pounds (about $135 dollars, today),” Skipwith explained.

Jefferson wrote back a detailed list, along with this powerful advice, on what is read, written and more importantly, acted upon:

“When an act of charity or of gratitude, for instance, is presented either to our site or imagination, we are deeply impressed with it’s beauty and feel a strong desire in ourselves of doing charitable and grateful acts also.”

Over 200 years later, Jefferson’s words of encouraging acts of kindness still ring true and serve to remind us that when we perform such acts, we begin a cycle of positive impression on those we serve, those who watch and ourselves.

Each becomes a lasting memory in our library of thought.