Letter from Frances Miller Seward to Lazette Miller Worden, May 20, 1838

  • Posted on: 5 October 2017
  • By: admin
Letter from Frances Miller Seward to Lazette Miller Worden, May 20, 1838



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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, May 20, 1838

action: sent

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

location: Auburn, NY

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

location: Canandaigua, NY

transcription: tap 

revision: crb 2017-06-29

Page 1

Sunday May 20th 1838
My dearest Sister,
The day of rest has come once
more — we have been engaged the last week in cleaning
house — commence again tomorrow — I recieved your
letter Wednesday and intended writing before but could
find no time until yesterday and then had the headache
I do think as you say that there seemed to be
no occasion for old Mr Smith’s
being so “gratuitously
wicked” but this is a strange world — however there
are few vices more hateful than hypocrisy —
I received a letter from Henry
Birth: 1801-05-16 Death: 1872-10-10
Friday written the
Tuesday previous at Florida — where Henry had gone
to finish his business finding no leisure in New York –
thither Cary
Birth: 1787-08-11 Death: 1869-06-20
Birth: 1798-07-26 Death: 1860-10-21
Birth: 1791-12-11 Death: 1855-08-22
and Rathbone
Birth: 1791-08-02 Death: 1845-05-13
were to
follow him and all to abide at his fathers a week
or ten days — He found the house undergoing repairs
and alterations beside painting, cleaning, gardening &
farming to be attended to —. I am very sorry they
will be put to so much inconvenience — I hardly know
whether Mrs Seward
Birth: 1769-11-27 Death: 1844-12-11
will esteem it such — at all events
she has never instructed her children in these things —
I very much doubt whether either of my boys will
ever place me in so unpleasant a situation if they
should it will not be ignorantly done — I am
sensible that Mrs Seward is not as much incommoded
by company coming at unpropitious seasons as most
women are for I do not think it possible always
to prevent ones own family from discovering things
of this kind even if it were desirable — which I think it
Page 2

is not in all cases though I would avoid making
them uncomfortable in that way — Poor Frances Tuthill
Birth: 1801-01-16 Death: 1860-02-07

is dreadfully bereaved — both of her little boys have
died suddenly with whooping cough — I never saw
any one more entirely devoted to her children
than she was last winter — Henry wishes me to write
to her — Tempe
Birth: 1812-09-30 Death: 1848-10-18
is still very ill — George
Birth: 1808-08-26 Death: 1888-12-07
Henry to come there — Lockey
Birth: 1805-07-15 Death: 1848-05-14
is about as she was
last winter unable to do any thing for her family
I think Polydores
Birth: 1799 Death: 1872-04-23
bad conduct will probably
finish her existence — Uncle Ben
Birth: 1762-11-30 Death: 1840-01-12
Mrs Seward's
only brother lies dangerously ill — they seem to
me to be in a sea of trouble — Mrs Sewards
health is improved — Ma's
Birth: 1784-06 Death: 1811-02-22
arm continues lame, almost
useless yet — Julia
Birth: 1813-03-18 Death: 1889-08-15
was performing wonderful feats
in the way of whitewashing and papering rooms
Julia is smart — I do not know how they could get
along without her — they have a colored girl
the kitchen but of course Ma does more than half
the work — I believe she would if she could not
use her hands at all –
You ask me about Fan's
Birth: 1826-12-12 Death: 1909-08-24
studying Latin — I cannot
say that I think it so essential for a girl a French
merely as an accomplishment I would not urge a child
to study any thing — but Latin would be more than this —
one obtains much knowledge of the construction of our
own language from the study of Latin — I think
my judgement about the grammar was premature I do
not now think it material which is studied first
the Latin or English — [ I ]

Alternate Text

Alternate Text: A
child will learn to parse from
one as well as the other as in translating the words
are arranged according to the English rules they have nothing
to unlearn — Henry says he never studied English grammar much
Page 3

I believe there a few persons who write more grammatically —
Sanford says he studied the Latin and English Grammar
at one time without any difficulty but he was older
than Fan — Fred
Birth: 1830-07-08 Death: 1915-04-25
has commenced Latin — he was so
desirous to do so — his English grammar is laid one side
for the present – – Now I think Miss Beecher
Birth: 1805
you talk with her can give you more light on this
subject than I can — I wish I could ask Henry
for myself I should wish a daughter to study it
as I would wish her to study any thing else
as a new source of knowledge and enjoyment but
I would not compel one who evinced a decided
distaste — I cannot say any thing much more
satisfactory on the subject of hats — there are two milliners
expecting some fine Tuscan cottages daily but they
have not arrived — Miss Bayard
has those I mentioned
I thought them pretty but she said those she expected
were of a finer texture and equally pretty in shape
so I thought it best to wait — dont you? —
I saw Mrs Sherwood
Birth: 1794-02-11 Death: 1866-02-03Certainty: Probable
the other day she says it was not
she but Mary
Certainty: Probable
that was at Canandaigua — she is going
out when Jane
Birth: 1822-03-29 Death: 1886-06-04Certainty: Probable
returns to school — said she should call
on you - - We have an Irish woman
in the kitchen
whose greatest failing is intemperance though she
has numberless of a minor importance
she will give place to the next best we can obtain
so it goes — seven in six months — Tell Frances
that Augustus
Birth: 1826-10-01 Death: 1876-09-11
has been sitting just 3 days 8
hours and some minutes — Gus spends all his leisure
time in watching her movements and making an accurate
calculation of the time when the young ducks will appear
He has signified his intention of spending his vacation with Cousin
Frances, some part of it at least, but it will not come until
Page 4

July — He is persuading Clara
Birth: 1793-05-01 Death: 1862-09-05
to wait until that time to make
her visit — Henry is to return to New York and Phladelphia
before he comes home — did I tell you when I was sick that Christina
Birth: 1818-07-24 Death: 1899-09
was engaged to Isham
Birth: 1811-01-15 Death: 1888-02-27
— I do not know that I had heard it there
Well the old gentleman
Birth: 1785 Death: 1839-08-08
would not consent — thought it was broken off
went to New York — Thursday night between ten and 12 they were married
privately at Mrs Waters


a sister of Ishams — and set off the same night
for — no one knows where – Frank Hamilton
Birth: 1813-09-10 Death: 1886-08-11
was a confidant of Isham
and procured the carriage for the journey — Mrs B
Birth: 1818-07-24 Death: 1899-09
— when she heard of
the elopement of her daughter dispatched a messenger post haste for
Jemmy Seymour
Birth: 1791-04-15 Death: 1875-12-03
— he went in pursuit of the young lady but did
Mrs Alvah Worden
Ontario Coun
Auburn NY May 21


Type: postmark

[right Margin] not arrive at the house until the knot was tied — It is said that Jemmy
evinced some signs of wrath on the occasion – but this appears almost incred-
ible — his visit only served to hasten their departure — Beach has returned — rumour
says makes a great noise about it — I am sorry I forgot this

[bottom Margin] important item until my letter was nearly finished — Frank
Birth: 1817 Death: 1879-12-23
Birth: 1809-11-29 Death: 1846-03-30Certainty: Possible
nephew was married last week to Laura Lansing
Birth: 1819 Death: 1896
you know perhaps has purchased and removed to Lansings
house — your own sister Frances