Letter from Frances Miller Seward to William Henry Seward, July 13, 1829

  • Posted on: 9 March 2016
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Letter from Frances Miller Seward to William Henry Seward, July 13, 1829



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Distributor:Seward Family Papers Project

Institution:University of Rochester

Repository:Rare Books and Special Collections


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Letter from Frances Miller Seward to William Henry Seward, July 13, 1829

action: sent

sender: Frances Seward
Birth: 1805-09-24  Death: 1865-06-21

location: Florida, NY

receiver: William Seward
Birth: 1801-05-16  Death: 1872-10-10

location: Auburn, NY

transcription: saz 

revision: crb 2015-09-28

Page 1

Monday 13th
My Dearest Henry, I have read over and over again your dear, kind, letter
in answer to the unkind, ungrateful one I sent you. I have shed of over it
tears of remorse and contrition would that they could wash from your mind
the remembrance that it was ever written. I will never again think you cold
or doubt your affection. I am not worthy of half your love. When will my life
cease to be a continued succession of doubt, error and repentance. He alone
knows who is constantly showering blessings on my unworthy head which in my
folly I do not appreciate. I have regretted a thousand times that I ever sent
that letter how could I be so destitute of all manner of good feeling as
to reproach my own dear Henry when separated from him, when he has no friend
to sooth him, no one to share his many troubles. It is tempting Providence to so
trifle with the best of gifts. Will you for the sake of your naughty sister
Birth: 1805-10-29 Death: 1839-01-04
that letter and try to forget that it was ever written. I must defer my journal
until tomorrow I am not in spirits to write to night, could I receive one kiss
of forgiveness it would make me happy. good night dearest and best.
Wednesday morning My Dear Henry, I am here in Goshen all the way up
stairs writing in a little bed room. Teusday I mean Monday night when your
Birth: 1768-12-05 Death: 1849-08-24
came home from here he brought a note from Cousin Frances
Birth: 1801-01-16 Death: 1860-02-07
they wished me to come out the next day, so yesterday morning I spent
in packing and preparing my clothes and by noon was so much
fatigued that I felt considerably more like going to bed than going
any where else, but there is no rest for the wicked and immediately
after dinner I recieved notice to prepare for the ride. Ma
Birth: 1769-11-27 Death: 1844-12-11
I came in the new gig with Polly
Certainty: Possible
and your Pa Sarah and Augustus
Birth: 1826-10-01 Death: 1876-09-11

and my trunk and bandbox in the old gig with George’s
Birth: 1808-08-26 Death: 1888-12-07
Ma and I came on very comfortably without any suspicion of accident
when we arrived I discovered that the hores horse your Pa drove was bleeding
at the mouth on enquiry we found that coming down a hill pretty
fast he had fallen down cut his knee very badly, bruised his mouth
and very nearly precipitated Augustus and Sarah from the gig they
were only saved by falling across the bandbox. The Dr
examined the
cut and found that an artery had been severed by a sharp stone
they succeeded in stopping the blood but are fearful the horse will be
considerably injured, poor fellow. I am very sorry he is a beautiful
animal and George idolizes him, he remains here yet I suppose
George will be along to day to see him. Pa and Ma went home last
night about eight oclock, it was a warm lovely evening.

[top Margin] It will not be necessary for your to change the direction of your letters I shall return
to Florida before you can recieve and answer this. Frances says I ought to be
ashamed for not putting in all their love.

Page 2

I will now return to my journal of Monday I had the hypo and went to bed
without recording the events of the day. In the afternoon we were visited by
Birth: 1754-02-28 Death: 1834-05-30
and Mrs Armstrong
Birth: 1767-09-30 Death: 1841-03-30
, Mrs Smith


and Lockey
Birth: 1805-07-15 Death: 1848-05-14
and the baby
. Mrs Smith I
think very disagreeable, Lockey I like very much always, and Aunt Rachel
as Ma says is a very good woman but rather weak. As for the old
gentleman the principal thing in his favour is his being an Antimason which
is not inconsiderable, he mortified his daughter Mrs Smith very much
by his vulgarisms in conversation and his freedom in helping himself at
table. Lockey had too much good sense to notice these things. While
they were there the mail came and brought me two letters from you
the 2d and 5th of July. The first contained the puzzle which was
written all round and round. I showed it to the company as a curiosity
Birth: 1742-06-02 Death: 1831-10-21
said “Why he ought to be whipped” and ma said “What whips
Harry, mother”. Grandma laughed and said she supposed I would
write that to him. When it came Mrs Armstrongs turn to view the
letter she scrutinized it so closely I think she must have determined
to read some for her own amusement I all the while standing with
hand extended to recieve it a occasionally approaching it nearer
as I became impatient. I thought they would never get through tea
and I was quite sure they would never get away after tea and give
me an opportunity to finish reading my letters, but the longest day
must have an end and they finally started leaving only Lockey of
her I make no stranger and had the [ satifaction ]

Alternate Text

Alternate Text: satisfaction
of completing the
perusal of the last page of the last letter before the candle was
lighted. I am sure I could not have read them by the light of a
candle. I was very dizzy after reading the puzzle and would
punish you by writing something similar had I sufficient ingenuity
I was very much amused by the account of Maria Miller
Birth: 1785-04-24 Death: 1870-04-17
and the
pillows. I could not help reading it to Ma and George who was
present railed at Abijah
Birth: 1779-02-14 Death: 1834-07-11
for making a foll fool of his wife I of
course joined him. I cannot think but there must have been some affecta-
tion in this display of Maria’s notwithstanding her piety. I suppose by
this time they have gone to vegetate at Ludlowville where they will not be
annoyed by noise of this or any other kind. Aunt Zerviah’s
is very much in character she has always looked upon a visit to
Auburn as the acme of human felicity, if Uncle G Ezra
Birth: 1790-05-28 Death: 1856-05-10
had been
along he would have had an additional reason for saying he had
never seen but three women that knew any thing, in which number
his wife was not of course included.
Page 3

Your fourth of July was like to the day here rainy and unpleasant. I admire very
much the selection of officers for the day. Doubleday
Birth: 1792-12-15 Death: 1866-03-11
must have looked handsome.
The people here are so good and so kind I shall have a delightful visit. I wish
I could get your letters without their going to Florida but it cannot be I think
there will one come to day hope they will send it out. Your Pa gave me $20
dollars the morning after he recieved your letter of course I do not want
this money but you are determined to make me extravegant you know
the facility with which I part with it I left this at Florida locked up in
my trunk having much more than sufficient for my wants while here.
It is an excessively warm day the first that I have found uncomfortable
since I left home. Frances has been sitting with me the last hour and
told her experience with Alsop Woodward
Birth: 1804 Death: 1858
who she says she considers a great
rascal as every one else does. She appears at present to be about in the
same situation w\ith regard to George Greire
Birth: 1802-09-27 Death: 1878-12-20
that Caroline Palmer
Birth: 1815 Death: 1860
with Henry Clark
Birth: 1801 Death: 1849-07-23
the summer I spent at Waterville, probably the affair
will terminate in the same way. I have not seen enough of the young
man to form a correct judgement but Frances evidently thinks he does not know
quite as [hole] as she does. What do you think? just as I had [hole]
so far [hole] in and I told her I was just asking you what [hole]
thought [hole] . She says you do not know him now that he is very
much altered since the time by your wicked stories you used to excite his
astonishment and extract from him the exclamations of “golden” “king” and
“”. Thursday morning before breakfast. I had written so far yesterday
when it became so warm that I was obliged to go down stairs to sit, after
dinner I went to sleep and after that there came up a thunder shower and I
stayed with Mrs Tuthill
Birth: 1780-10-05 Death: 1869-06-28
who is I think quite as much afraid as myself.
we had some people from New York here yesterday, an old gentleman and his
wife, two daughters and a cousin. They were rather an indifferent set except one
of the girls to whom I took quite a fancy because she looks like Beardsley
Birth: 1807-05-30 Death: 1894-01-15
, they
left us in the afternoon. The evening we spent in talking about you and
Cousin Mary
Birth: 1794-08-30 Death: 1858-12-31Certainty: Probable
and Mrs Tuthill appeared to take much pleasure in recounting your
youthful pranks, told how they all cryed when you went to Auburn and
appeared to think they should not feel half so bad should their own sons
go in the same manner, by the way George Tuthill
Birth: 1807-05-17 Death: 1883-05-25
has gone to Liverpool.
You know he was somewhere at the south with Mr Ames
, a captain of a boat
took a fancy to him and offered to take him to Liverpool as clerk, he felt an
inclination to see the world and accepted the offer, they all think he has done
remarkably well. Augustus and Tommy Thorn
agree very well you know
Augustus always relinquishes his playthings without any difficulty, without
trying to defend his right to them, this is a very convenient disposition for visiting.
your own Frances
Page 4

William H. Seward Esq.
Cayuga County.