There IS something new under the sun!


… what an effort, my dear Sir, of bigotry in Politics & Religion have we gone through … [now] science & honesty are replaced on their high ground …… the storm is now subsiding & the horison becoming serene, it is pleasant to consider … we can no longer say there is nothing new under the sun. for this whole chapter in the history of man is new. the great extent of our republic is new. it’s sparse habitation is new. the mighty wave of public opinion which has rolled over it is new.

Source: To Joseph Priestly, March 21, 1801

Patrick Lee’s Explanation

Transformational leaders welcome the new!
Priestly, 10 years older than Jefferson, was an English theologian and scientist who immigrated to America in 1794. He was an intellectual, an experimenter, a rationalist, and a prolific writer. Priestly’s thoughts on “true” Christianity, moral rather than divine, influenced Jefferson’s thoughts on religion.

The two men were practically soul-mates. Here, Jefferson wrote just after his inauguration as President and America’s sea-change in the election of 1800. The bigots had been routed, said he, and a bright new future dawned for the nearly new nation. Priestly was one of few men with whom Jefferson could correspond in such a frank manner.

[Note: Letters taken from the National Archives, like this one, preserve Jefferson’s spelling, punctuation, capitalization or lack of it. Other sources often “correct” those things.]

“You did a remarkable job of interpreting Jefferson’s character
and transplanting him, his thoughts, and ideas into the 21st century.”

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The Moral Liberal Thomas Jefferson Editor, Patrick Lee, is a professional speaker, actor and writer. Since 1990, he has inspired, entertained and educated audiences from Maine to Hawaii with his authentic, first person leadership presentations as President Thomas Jefferson, Frontiersman Daniel Boone, and Lewis & Clark Co-Leader William Clark. He also appears as himself, The Hopeful Humorist™, with a program of motivational humor, patriotism and inspiration.

His business address is


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