“as ragged as bushes and mire could make him” — Dolly Madison Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin

Today, the Dolly Madison Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin remembers a letter written by the lady on October 31, 1835.

Mrs. Madison, Dolly to her friends, wrote many letters. She especially kept in touch with her nieces, Mary and Dolly, daughters of her sister, Anna Cutts.

From the Memoirs and Letters of Dolly Madison, Wife of James Madison, President of the United States edited by her grand-niece, published in 1886:


To Mary.

Montpelier, October 31, 1835.

I was delighted to receive your last letter, my dearest Mary, as I am always, and sorry for your disappointment at not seeing Thomas and his wife.

You inquire if Count d’Orsay has been here?

Yes, he spent nearly three weeks with us, off and on, and seemed to enjoy himself very much.

He is a great sportsman, and would borrow Payne’s summer clothes, and go forth, returning as ragged as bushes and mire could make him, rest for several days, and then off again, tumbling into the river, losing his way — and yet come home laughing at his adventures.

We found him an elegant young man, sensible and well-informed, except on the intricacies of our woods.

I forget, now, who introduced him; I think General Dearborn sent a letter of introduction.

Mr. and Mrs. Stevenson stayed a week with me, but I have not yet heard from Mrs. Grimes and her children, of their time for coming.

I must tell you that my English beauty has given me a calf as pretty as herself; tell this to dear Dolly that she may be glad with me.

Have you any amusing books, no matter how old, to lend me?

You see in what haste I write; tell me everything that you are doing, dear girls; my heart follows you all the time, in spite of my engrossing family.

It is now late at night, and my eyes close.

Dear love to you all. Good night, and sweet dreams!

Your aunt Dolly.


The Dolly Madison Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin shows with an artist’s portrayal of Count D’Orsay, circa 1830.

Dolly Madison Commemorative Silver Dollar Coin