Letter from Albert Haller Tracy to William Henry Seward, February 7, 1831

  • Posted on: 6 July 2018
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Letter from Albert Haller Tracy to William Henry Seward, February 7, 1831
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transcriber

Transcriber:spp:jef

student editor

Transcriber:spp:cnk

Distributor:Seward Family Digital Archive

Institution:University of Rochester

Repository:Rare Books and Special Collections

Date:1831-02-07

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Letter from Albert Haller Tracy to William Henry Seward, February 7, 1831

action: sent

sender: Albert Tracy
Birth: 1793-06-17  Death: 1859-09-12

location: Norwich

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

location: Albany, NY

transcription: jef 

revision: crb 2018-06-22

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Page 1

Norwich Conn, Feby. 7. 1831–
My dear Seward
It shames my manhood that I am so attached
to you– It is a foolish fondness from which no good can come – I ab-
jured such feelings years ago, but despite my judgement they
have stolen on me again, bringing, I doubt not, as they always
have done, fruits meet for repentance– My friendship for George
Boughton
Birth: 1792-07-30 Death: 1866-04-28
is just right it fills my heart exactly, but yours crowds
it producing a kind of girlish impatience which one can
neither dispose of nor comfortably endure– It is a truth, silly,
as it is to confess it, that I was scarcely across the river before
I regretted undertaking the journey and principally for my re-
luctance to be seperated from you, and every day and almost
every hour since I have suffered a womanish longing to see
you– But all this is too ridiculous for the subject matter of a
letter between two grave Senators, and I’ll leave unsaid three
fourths of what I have been dreaming on since I left Albany
Well then, Per varios casus et per tot discrimina
rerum” I have once more reached the place of my nativity and
embraced in overflowing affection the dear authors of it– Our jour-
ney though not absolutely disastrous was one of some peril and
great suffering– The weather was intensely cold, the roads hor-
rible from drifted and unpathed snow, and the vehicles crowded
and comfortless– But for all this, and for infinitely more had
it occurred we are paid, richly paid by the joy and hap-
piness which our arrival has imparted to the bosoms of our
aged dear parents
x Birth: 1759  Death: 1838-08-20  Birth: 1757-05-30  Death: 1837-04-26 
– They are such parents in every respect as
affectionate children could desire– My father now in his 75th
Page 2

year though always of feeble habit, and at this season particu-
larly infirm still retains all the vigour and vivacity of a
strong and cultivated intellect joined with sensibility a
natural refinement of taste and a moral sensibility of feeling, if
anything over acute, but from this very circumstance connected
with his advanced age additionally interesting– My dear mother al-
most his equal in years is his superior in native cheerfulness
and sprightliness of humour combined with the most natural point and
accuracy of remark and a heart of unbounded and universal benev-
olence– If you could see and know them you would be incredulous
that two beings so totally devoid of selfishness and of such exalted
disinterestedness of soul were the parents of the cautious provident
and selflooking friend who now addresses you– Indeed did I not
know that I equal them in affection I should in their presence feel
painfully humbled by their superior virtues, as it is I feel that
in some sort that all they have is mine and insensibly, while
here, arrogate for myself no small share of their extraordinary
goodness–
Both Harriet
Birth: 1800-03-09 Death: 1876-03
and myself notwithstanding the roughness
and exposure of the journey have enjoyed comfortable health
and feel after refreshing ourselves with the affectionate and inter-
course of our friends that we shall return at the appointed
time in improved condition and hope to greet all our friends
and yourself especially in the full enjoyment of that cheerful animation
that already has given us so much pleasure–
We of course are too far one side of the great world
to gather anything that can interest you who are in the midst of
it– Indeed I feel that one principal object of my journey is to
be attained by forgetting every thing but the dear friends I
have left behind, and if I could think less of some of them
than I do the pleasure I am now taking from would be altogether
unalloyed– Harriet presents her kindest recollection coup-
led with a warm hope of seeing you instantly on our return–
In which hope I need not add how firmly are united the wish and
expectation of your affectionate friend
Albert H. Tracy–
Page 3

William H. Seward
Member of the Senate
Albany
New York
NORWICH CON.
FEB 8
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Stamp

Type: postmark

Hand Shiftx

William Seward

Birth: 1801-05-16 Death: 1872-10-10
A. H. Tracy
7 Feb 1831