Letter from George Washington Seward to William Henry Seward, August 1, 1828

  • Posted on: 29 March 2016
  • By: admin
Letter from George Washington Seward to William Henry Seward, August 1, 1828



student editor


Distributor:Seward Family Digital Archive

Institution:University of Rochester

Repository:Rare Books and Special Collections


In the context of this project, private URIs with the prefix "psn" point to person elements in the project's persons.xml authority file. In the context of this project, private URIs with the prefix "pla" point to place elements in the project's places.xml authority file. In the context of this project, private URIs with the prefix "psn" point to person elements in the project's staff.xml authority file. In the context of this project, private URIs with the prefix "psn" point to person elements in the project's bibl.xml authority file. verical-align: super; font-size: 12px; text-decoration: underline; text-decoration: line-through; color: red;

Letter from George Washington Seward to William Henry Seward, August 1, 1828

action: sent

sender: George Seward
Birth: 1808-08-26  Death: 1888-12-07

location: Troy, NY

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

location: Auburn, NY

transcription: atb 

revision: ekk 2016-03-17

Page 1

Rensselaer School Troy August 1st 1828
Dear Brother,
Ere this I expected to have seen you hear, but that
happy ^hope^ has been disappointed. I received a letter from Jennings
Birth: 1793-08-23 Death: 1841-02-24

stating that he had some expectation of being in Troy on
last Sabbath, and in the event of this not coming he wished
me to take stage on Monday morning and to Schenec-
where I should see you, the object in view was to hear
your Eulogy on the Character of Bedan
Birth: 1803 Death: 1827-07-20
Whatever gratification it might have afforded me in seeing
you or the satisfaction I might experienced in hearing
your encomium on the merits of your deceased Friend
or whatever source of pleasure I might have had, yet thall
would not compensate for the injury which would take
place here, I asked leave of the Professor, he said I might go
but it might prove injurious to me, for to omit one lecture
would be to break a link.
I did hope to have seen you here, or to have heard
of you at Schenectady. I would have wrote ^to^ you there
but I doubted your receiving the letter,
You not doubt am surprised to hear of my being
here it is as so to me , and I often wonder ^how^ I came
here I did not expect it but about a week before I left home
yet I hope that I am not here for any triffling purpose
that I have not left a home which required my attention
to pass of time foolishly, and I most humbly hope that
I shall not dissapoint the hopes of our aged Parents
x Birth: 1769-11-27  Death: 1844-12-11  Birth: 1768-12-05  Death: 1849-08-24 

who suffer great inconvenience in my leaving them
I may yet be useful in Society a honour to my name
which is the only seen method of compensating their thous-
sand cares anxieties & inconveniences
Page 2

I suppose you do not yet understand the history and in-
tention of this institution of its method of teaching and
its manner.
I will endeavour to obtain from the Professor, the Con-
stitution & the Exercises of the Rensselaer School which I shall
send you, in the mean time I will give you as much
of its history as I am able. It was founded by the Hon
Stephen Van Rensselaer
Birth: 1764-11-01 Death: 1839-01-26
in the year '24, by giving Pro-
fessor Eaton
Birth: 1776-05-17 Death: 1842-05-10
a sallary of— and by him carried on
or taught. It is purely "Sch " Scientific," there is no liter-
ature taught, we study nature & nature's works,
it was incorporated in the year '26, by, the Legislature under
and by the Title of The President and Trustees of Rensselaer School.
But do not think that these Trustees have any pecuniary
consideration in it, there is an instrument between them
and Mr Van Rensselaer in which they bind themselves to
take charge of its concerns only
Professor Eaton is senior, Lewis C Beck
Birth: 1798-10-04 Death: 1853-04-21
, Professor of Botany
and T D Eaton
Birth: 1807-12-19 Death: 1828-11-14
(Son of the P) is the adjunct now very unwell with
the consumption, are the officers. tho, there is young man
(educated in the school) who is adjunct pro tem
At sunrise the bell rings for examination, breakfast im-
mediately after, at 10 o clock, the officer of the day lectures
before all the Students, this office filled by each one
in Alphabetical order, he is criticised, the student are then
dividen into two divisions, each under the charge of sub-
assistant these lecture to their divisions these are again
divided when each Student delivers a lecture to his
division and the either before the Professor, Oficer or Sub-
assistant, each one is criticised by all who hear him
this exercise through, the bell rings for the general criticising
meeting, when each tells his neighbour his faults
Page 3

let them be whatever they may, Grammer, delivery, manner,
position &c, this exercise is made in good humour, by the
time this closes dinner is announced, at two o' clock the
Professor delivers a lecture, which last untill about 4
we are then at liberty to go botanizing or prepare for the
next day's lecture, this course last but five days in a week
every other Saturday we have the day to ourselves.
On Friday evening and the Saturday morning & even-
ing we have Parliamentry exercises, each Student has
a certificate of his election from some particular State
which state he represent in the Uun Union, for instance I
am a ^the^ representative of the State of Connecticut, the orders &
rules of the house of Representatives of the United States are
here adopted, in short we call ourselves the Congress, Bills
are presented and goes through the same form of proceed-
ings as there. The Representative of Connecticut has been elected
Speaker of the House for this Session.
On Monday next we begin on Chimistry
which will confine us three weeks very
closely. I am fixing myself for its exercises, which
I am advised will be very severe.
The examination of the "Troy Female Seminary" is now
going forward, the Schools each have the privelege of attend-
ing and I am advised that we will have young Ladies
with the "Honorable Principle" to attend ours, it is no more
than justice that I should criticise, to be critcised in
turn. I shall therefore this afternoon attend
But how did you get along at Schnectady. I expect
that you seen many a mate, and had a pleasant time
How does Auburn do, the People, Anto-Masonry, Adams
Birth: 1767-07-11 Death: 1848-02-23

and how does the little Augustus
Birth: 1826-10-01 Death: 1876-09-11
, for I do not yet beleive
he has grown out of his frock, will you after reading
drop me your villages ^paper^ you do not know how glad I
Page 4

would be to see some thing or some body from Auburn, who
have you in the office, is Burges
Birth: 1806 Death: 1882-12-07
at the Clerk's office yet
Do you expect to go home this Fall, if I dont stop asking
questions you may think me inquisitive. Give my respects
to all, GrandMa Frances
Birth: 1805-09-24 Death: 1865-06-21
, Aunt Clara
Birth: 1793-05-01 Death: 1862-09-05
Yours Affectionately
GW Seward
N B I send you the Constitution & Exercises, may I hope
soon to hear of you
Wm H Seward Esq
AUG. 2


Type: postmark

Hand Shiftx

William Seward

Birth: 1801-05-16 Death: 1872-10-10
G.W. Seward
Aug 2d