Letter from Frances Miller Seward to William Henry Seward, June 26, 1829

  • Posted on: 10 July 2017
  • By: admin
Letter from Frances Miller Seward to William Henry Seward, June 26, 1829



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Distributor:Seward Family Digital Archive

Institution:University of Rochester

Repository:Rare Books and Special Collections


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Letter from Frances Miller Seward to William Henry Seward, June 26, 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: obm 

revision: tap 2017-01-26

Page 1

Friday night 26th
My Dear Henry. It was so cold last night when I came up to go to bed
that I could not write any. Mrs Cummings
spent the afternoon with
us Mr Cummings
came down to tea. It is a great mystery to me how
he ever came to make such a selection in the choice of a companion
he is so plain so devoid of all kind of affectation and has so much
sound sense. She is not only very affected but very silly sometimes I should
think getting childish or perhaps always has been so. This afternoon
Mrs De Cay
Birth: 1799-06-30 Death: 1844-04-18
(formely Sally Cowdrey) and Sarah Thompson took tea with
us I rather liked Sally now notwithstanding her pedantry but Sarah Thompson
is very trifling appears to pride herself very much upon being wild. After
they went home I went over to Dr Austins. Anna Maria
had gone to
Goshen on Wednesday. Mrs Austin
was very agreeable told me all about
Birth: 1805 Death: 1839-01-04Certainty: Possible
getting married — made me promise to come and see her often
regretted that she could not return my calls. I cannot refrain from
laughing sometimes to see how wonderful officious and inquisitive the
people are about Cornelia. They never mention her name in your Ma’s
Birth: 1769-11-27 Death: 1844-12-11
ence but I am invariably taken one side by all old and young, great and small
and undergo a critical examination. All manner of questions
Does her father and mother ever speak of her? Does Mrs Seward write to her?
Does Mr Seward
Birth: 1768-12-05 Death: 1849-08-24
know it? How does she live? How does she look and act?
and a thousand other which I am often obliged to confess my inability to
answer because I had have never had sufficient curiosity to ask them.
One would suppose by this time that the gossiping mania on this subject
Would have subsided but I see no prospect of it at present.
T Saturday night. Tonight I know my Henry is writing to me or at least
thinking of me because it is Saturday night. We have had a respite
of one day from visitors and visiting which has been quite refreshing.
Your Pa went to Goshen this morning, has just returned. I was mistaken in
saying we had no visitors Sally Thompson came in just as we were
going to take tea of course stayed although she said it was the
time her mother
usually had a fit of the ague. I was very glad
that George
Birth: 1808-08-26 Death: 1888-12-07
took the task of entertaining her upon himself which he did
by teasing her constantly about Samuel Randolph — a subject which

[top Margin]
Since I wrote about the cambrick Miss Holly
has sent home the hood finished
so I will not trouble you—
Page 2

appeared to be very gratifying. The boys
x Birth: 1830-07-08  Death: 1915-04-25  Birth: 1826-10-01  Death: 1876-09-11 
had commenced preparing for
the 4th by erecting a liberty pole of their own back of the Academy although
the day is not to be celebrated here — then for amusement they have taken
turns in climbing up the pole which was very unsteady thereby endangering
their lives and occasioning sundry unpleasant anticipations in my
mind about the time when Augustus shall be large enough
for exploits of this kind. Augustus thinks his Gamma Seward a
very uncommon woman says “saddle bridle” to her many times in
the course of a day. What do the folks at Auburn do on the fourth
not dance I hope if they do I think it advisable to adopt the manner
of the people here in one the of adjacent towns. The ladies and gentlemen
are all notified in the paper that their company is requested or solicited
or expected at Mr
— tavern at 2 o clock in the afternoon — this saves
all the trouble of preparing and distributing tickets which is a consideration
of some consequence. Monday night. My Dear Henry. It rained all
day yesterday and I wrote a letter to Grandma
Birth: 1751 Death: 1835-10-03
and went to bed with
the headache and did not write any to you so I could not send
my letter today. Monday morning or afternoon rather is always an inter-
esting time to me. I was comfortably excited all day by the hope of a
letter — tried to sleep but dreamed all the time about letters — thought
the mail was opened and a letter given me from an old schoolmate
who made many enquiries about events that transpired years ago and
had long since ceased to interest me. At length the mail came — was
opened and your Pa brought me one letter from you dated the 20th so
after waiting nine long days I got a letter which was dated only three
days later than the one I received nine days ago I was very glad
to get this letter but a little vexed that it had been so long coming.
Poor Walter
has gone at last. I remember the last time I saw his I knew then
I never could see him again in this world — how fearful his mother
that we should mention in his presence a death which had just occurred.
You will perhaps be astonished when I say I was affected even to tears by
hearing the death of Dr. Tuttle
 Death: 1829-06
— notwithstanding my knowledge of his general
character of his numerous vices, the recollection of his kindness and
attention to me during my sickness will never be entirely effaced from my mind.
I have not had so much of the hypo


A Greek preposition for under, beneath • A morbid depression of the spirits •
since I left home. I have been
reading all evening to your Ma and going to bed with the headache
Page 3

Teusday night. Another cold day this afternoon Lockey
Birth: 1805-07-15 Death: 1848-05-14
came down and took
tea with us fortunately we were at home but it was merely accidental
for your Ma sent word this morning to Mrs Vail
Certainty: Possible
that we would come
and take tea with her — she went back word she was engaged but would
like to see us tomorrow. This is a mode of visiting that is not at all
consonant with my feelings I remonstrated
To exhibit or present strong reasons against an act, measure of any course of proceedings • To suggest urgent reasons in opposition to a measure • To show by a strong representation of reasons •
as far as I thought proper
without any avail. I have been here nearly a month and had the Vails
x Birth:   Death:   Birth:   Death:  

been at all desirous that I should visit them they certainly might one
of them either Frances or her mother have called and invited me. This
they have not done and it appears this way of sending word as if you
would visit people whether they will or not. You will probably think this
some of the imaginary trouble that you advised me to create for myself
by way of whiling away the time. Uncle Ben
Birth: 1762-11-30 Death: 1840-01-12
as he is called took tea
with us to night he appears to be a man of few words. Grandma went yesterday morning to her brothers E. Jacksons
Birth: 1754-08-04 Death: 1834-02-11Certainty: Probable
where she is to remain a few
days. Yesterday your Pa received a letter from Jennings
Birth: 1793-08-23 Death: 1841-02-24
— he says
they are comfortable settled at K Bolton. Marcia
Birth: 1794-07-23 Death: 1839-10-25
is much better
pleased than he anticipated. Augustus looked rather sorry when
he saw so many woods. George and I have been talking all the evening about
^novels^ and he has concluded the next time he goes to Warwick to see what he can
find in the library that is interesting. You recollect you told me to purchase
that last Waverly novel
Author: Walter Scott Publisher: Berlin Schlesinger Place of Publication:Berlin Date: 1828
but I did not and have forgotten the title — it is
probably in Auburn before this time. I can hardly tell why I did not get it
in Albany I recollect thinking I would ask Beardsley
Birth: 1783-11-09 Death: 1857-05-11
to purchase it
for me but it was forgotten in the multiplicity of my business.
Wednesday night it has rained almost all day so we did not
make our intended visit to Jeremy’s
. Clary’s
Birth: 1793-05-01 Death: 1862-09-05
letter came this morning
tell ^her^ I have not laughed so long and so loud since I came here
as I did at her story about Bronson
Birth: 1792 Death: 1857-06-20
. I shall answer her letter
by the next mail. (I brought with me some muslin when I came
to make a hood intending to make it myself but having no time I
took it to Miss Holly she has commenced it finds that there is not
sufficient cambrick (I got the usual quantity) there is none here to match
it and it is much easier for to me send to you than it would be to
send to Goshen to Newbergh. I wish you would ask Clary to get haff ½ yd
like the piece I enclose I bought it at Fitches or Oliphants — cannot you send
it by the mail it not occupy much space as a paper I do not know

[left Margin]
whether this is proper or not and do not like to ask your Pa. You will know and so as you
think best about it — of course you cannot send it in any other way—) your own Frances
Page 4

H ¾
William H. Seward Esq
Florida 24 _____


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