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April 15, 2019 / Joanne Yeck

Buckingham County Notables: The Bolling Brothers, Part III

Thomas Jefferson

Need to catch up, click here: Buckingham County Notables: The Bolling Brothers, Part I

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Robert T. Hubard’s sketch of Lenaeus Bolling was a glowing tribute to a moderate, thoughtful man, who like most planters of his era did not shy away from politics.

Lenaeus Bolling, continued

He belonged to the Republican Party and was warmly attached to Mr. Jefferson and his views, although he though Mr. Jefferson ultra in desiring to abolish the freehold suffrage in Virginia. While he concurred with Mr. Jefferson in opposing the politics of Alexander Hamilton in advocating a strict construction of the Federal Constitution, and therefore opposing a National Bank, a protective tariff and etc. as unauthorized by the Constitution of the United States, Lenaeus Bolling would never yield his opinions up to Jefferson or any other man unless convinced of error and believing that no man in Virginia ought to vote except the freeholders, he expressed his astonishment that Mr. Jefferson and other sensible men should avow so much faith in Dick, Tom, and Harry as to suppose that they lived without land, or other property, “mere hangers on and loafers upon society,” should be allowed to exercise political power.

Lenaeus Bolling was the half-brother of my mother, and of course he was my half uncle. I knew him from my infancy until his death. He was fond of my mother and her children. I married his daughter Susan, who was my half first cousin. This marriage had his entire approbation. Upon his deathbed, he spoke to me and of me, in terms of praise and high regard. He never made any profession of religion; but I never saw anyone meet death or speak of it with more composure philosophy, or resignation. My love and regard for him and his character may have insensibly biased my feelings or impaired my judgement in some parts of this sketch; but I know that I have only sought to do justice and to leave to my own sons a faithful notice of the character of their grandfather Lenaeus Bolling.

Coming Next: Buckingham County Notables: The Bolling Brothers, Part IV

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