Letter from Frances Miller Seward to Lazette Miller Worden, February 7, 1834

  • Posted on: 25 July 2017
  • By: admin
Letter from Frances Miller Seward to Lazette Miller Worden, February 7, 1834



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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 Lazette Miller Worden, February 7, 1834

action: sent

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

location: Albany, NY

receiver: Lazette Worden
Birth: 1803-11-01  Death: 1875-10-03

location: Aurora, NY

transcription: crb 

revision: obm 2017-02-22


Page 1

Albany Jan 7th-
My Dearest Sister, Your letter came just in time to dispel
a thousand apprehensions about your health as it was a
day later than the usual time. I am sorry to hear you
have been ill and wish I could have been with you
to nurse you. Your letter is post marked Auburn so I
suppose you are at home now but will be in Aurora
again before this letter reaches you. Last Saturday
(the date of my last letter) while I was studying my
French lesson, thinking it to early for calls some ladies
were announced. I told Mathew
to bring them up to
my room supposing it was some persons with whom I
would not be particular as they came at so early an
hour as to find me in disposable. It proved to be Miss
Birth: 1814 Death: 1882
and Marthy Bowers
. I had heard Marthy was
in town and intended calling - the Mancuis I did not
expect to see as I knew they did not go out this
winter. Marthy was very agreeable and appears quite
as young and much prettier than when we were at school
She posesses all the good sense with which the family
are blessed - is gentle and unassuming - thinks her attractions
vastly inferior to her more beautiful sisters and was grieved
that Miss Mancuis had given out that a Miss Bowers was
visiting her without specifying which one it was. She
is much more respected and beloved than her sisters whom
you know Dodge
Birth: 1789-07-10 Death: 1873-01-30
said "did not take here"- On Sunday
I went with J.C. Spencer
Birth: 1788-01-08 Death: 1855-05-17
to St Pauls Church (Henry
Birth: 1801-05-16 Death: 1872-10-10
too much engaged in temporal affairs to accompany me) we
heard a fine sermon from Mr Price the new clergyman
I think him altogether a more interesting preacher than
Mr Keys
- his congregation are delighted with him.
I think the church which you know is the same style
of architecture as ours much inferior in beauty - the
only advantage that I can concede is in the height
of the ships as we can see over the tops of those at St Pauls
Page 2

a gratification which requires it considerable exertion to obtain
at St Peters. Spencer who is all "" on all subjects
which interest him was so much pleased that I promised
to go with him again in the evening - but Henry
thought it would not be prudent for me to walk
so far twice in one day so I staid at home. Henry
went himself with Spencer. I employed myself in hearing
Augustus recite his catechism and read in the bible until
I was interrupted by a call from Mr James
the Mr James
who boarded at the American last winter. Monday I
walked down South Market below the Eagle and then
up North Market in pursuit of some yarn to knit
Birth: 1830-07-08 Death: 1915-04-25
a pair of stockings - the morning was so delightful
that I extended my walk further than was necessary
to enjoy the fine sunshine. I came home very tired
found a number of cards - felt thankful I had escaped
a dozen heartless calls - read Jeanie Deans
Author: Walter Scott Publisher: DeWolfe, Fiske & Co Place of Publication:Boston, MA Date: 183?
to Aunty Cary
Birth: 1788 Death: 1863-06-22

all the afternoon. Tracy
Birth: 1793-06-17 Death: 1859-09-12
came in and talked so despondingly
about poor John
Birth: 1802 Death: 1839-07-22
that it gave me the vapours. I wanted
to see you of course very much just to make you cry
with me. I think it must have been the day that
I sent my last letter that I went to see John. I
mentioned to you that his sister
had come - she appears
like a good plain woman and very speaks very affectionately
of John - has been married some time but has no children
she will remain here until there is some change for
better or worse the former of which we have hardly
any hope. John appeared glad to see me and said he
hoped to be well enough to go out of the house in
a few weeks. I am afraid he will never go out
alive - he coughs and raises constantly and has
many symptoms of a confirmed disease of the lungs.
Thus it ever is - "The good die first
But those whose hearts are dry as summers dust
Burn to the socket"-
Page 3

Tuesday evening we attended a party at Rufus Kings
Birth: 1795 Death: 1867-07-09
met Dr Morgan
Certainty: Probable
there he is attending the medical society
here he dined with us the next day and marvellous as
it may appear made himself very agreeable. George
Birth: 1802-10-16 Death: 1870-01-04
dined with us also. Wednesday Mrs Tracy
Birth: 1800 Death: 1876

came over and sat an hour with us - upon the whole
it was Tuesday because we made arrangements about
going to Mrs Kings
Birth: 1805-05-29 Death: 1878-01-10
- Tracy did not go. Aunty
Birth: 1793-05-01 Death: 1862-09-05
to enjoy parties very much she has a great deal of veracity
and is fond of company. Wednesday we were invited to Mrs
. Mrs Lockwood is some connexion of Delevans
Birth: 1793-01-06 Death: 1871-01-15

rather a genteel
Polite; having the manners of well bred people • Graceful in form; elegant in appearance, dress or manner •
woman and has a house full of ladies
but whether the party was given on her own account
or her boarders I am unable to say. I enjoyed the party
very much - found so many of my acquaintances there that
it seemed something like being at home. Catherine Nelson

Editorial Note

Could be Catherine Neilson
Birth: 1809-06-09 Death: 1893-12-23
or Catherine Ann Nelson
Birth: 1805 Death: 1875-04
and Marthy
Bowers were among them - we came home at 1/2 past ten. Thursday
morning Mrs Tracy came over and spent the morning with us
in Mrs Cary's room. Mrs Cary you know has a front room and it is
on that account more pleasant than mine but I have all
the sunshine which is so delightful at this season of the year.
Mrs Tracy said the ladies of the house had a very merry time
after the other company had dispersed dancing singing &c.
Tracy of course went to bed at nine oclock - after Mrs Tracy
left I went to call on Marthy Bowers who was to leave town that
day. Henry did not come home in time to go with me as he was desirous
of doing (being as he says rather smitten with Marthy) so I went over
to Mrs Lockwoods and left word with Maryann if he came to have
him meet me there. Called on Mrs Lockwood & Mrs Clary left cards
for Mrs Nelson Morehouse
Birth: 1798 Death: 1865-01-29
& Edwards
Birth: 1789-02-14 Death: 1877-04-07
who were out and then
went to Aunty Tracy's rooom - found her combing her hair and putting
it up in the exceedingly unbecoming manner bows and braids
felt thankful that I was boarding at a house where I could dress
with some kind of comfort and was not obliged to disfigure my-
self, only when I wentgo to parties &c - They go rather beyond the
American at Mrs Lockwoods some of the ladies are in full dress
constantly. Mrs Tracy says that she enjoys it but I imagine she would
prefer to be left a little more at her ease. The Miss Colliers
Mrs Nelson
Morehouse and Miss Daurence
have left Mrs Lockwoods and gone to their
respective homes. Mrs Morehouse is a sister of Sarah Fullers
Miss Daurence
her cousins all from Cooperstown. I went from there to Mancius after
waiting some time for Henry, found them so agreeable that I stayed until
dinner was announced, they insisted upon my staying and proposed sending
for Henry, but he was engaged to dine at Rufus Kings so I came home.
Miss Rivington
who I think is very disagreeable was there, a cousin I
believe I do not know whether she lives in Albany or not, hope she will
not feel under any obligations to call upon me if she does - she says
she never spent so unpleasant a winter as the one at Auburn. Mrs
Birth: 1813 Death: 1873-04-29
called in the afternoon and invited Mrs Cary and myself there to tea
Page 4

on Friday. Friday I was sick in bed all the morning and then like Mrs Foster

Editorial Note

Literary reference to Mrs. Forster from Pride and Prejudice

dressed myself and went to Mrs Horners - we had a very pleasant visit no
one but Mrs Cary and myself - Mrs Horner lives very handsomely. Their
rooms are furnished chiefly with pictures. Flemish pictures - very
beautiful and very expensive I should think. Mrs Horner appears precisely
as she did at Auburn very sociable friendly and animated. James
Birth: 1804 Death: 1874-06-12
not returned from the West yet she expects Eliza
Birth: 1807 Death: 1876-10-31
with him - made me
promise to bring both the boys
Birth: 1826-10-01 Death: 1876-09-11
and stay all day - her babe
Birth: 1833
is very pretty
11 months old. Henry and Uncle Cary came about seven in time to take
tea with us - they had been dining at the Governors
Birth: 1786-12-12 Death: 1857-07-04
. Dont you think
Tracy was actually there at a dinner - his health is I think much better
than it was last winter - he has just been in this (Saturday) morning he
says he feels somewhat encouraged about John - thinks his symptoms more
favourable. I hardly dare hope he will recover his disease is so deceptive
in its character - like the consumption
The act of consuming by use, waste, dissipation, and decay; destruction • The state of being wasted or diminished; waste; dimunition; loss • A gradual decay or dimunition of the body; especially the disease called phthisis pulmonalis (pulmonary consumption), a disease seated in the lungs, attended with a hectic fever, cough etc •
always it makes us hope and fear
alternately. He told Mr Cary yesterday that he should want his sleigh soon
to ride out. I hope he may - how much I should rejoice to see him once more
in our room. Henry has gone to the house - send love of course - also Mrs Cary
Mrs Alvah Worden
Cayuga County
FEB 13


Type: postmark

[right Margin] the boys are both well. George Rathbone says he saw you at Auburn
the day he left. I wish you a pleasant visit. Ward
has just been in and
desires me as a particular favour to give his love to you - he will be
in Auburn next week a kiss for Frances
Birth: 1826-12-12 Death: 1909-08-24
your own Sister Frances
I send this letter by Rathbone tomorrow morning.