Letter from William Henry Seward to Cornelia Seward Allen and William Henry Seward III, September 6, 1870

  • Posted on: 8 May 2018
  • By: admin
xml: 
Letter from William Henry Seward to Cornelia Seward Allen and William Henry Seward III, September 6, 1870
x

transcriber

Transcriber:spp:maf

student editor

Transcriber:spp:csh

Distributor:Seward Family Digital Archive

Institution:University of Rochester

Repository:Rare Books and Special Collections

Date:1870-09-06

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 William Henry Seward to Cornelia Seward Allen and William Henry Seward III, September 6, 1870

action: sent

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

location: China

receiver: Cornelia Allen
Birth: 1862-09-11  Death: 1921-10-05

location: Auburn, NY

transcription: maf 

revision: tap 2018-03-30

<>
Page 1

x

Editorial Note

This letter was written by Olive Risley Seward for William H. Seward.
September 6th 1870
On board Steamer “China”
My dear little grand children,
A great many persons are expecting
letters from me impatiently no doubt.
Why should'nt you have a token
of my affection, without expecting
it? Where do you think I am
writing to you from? It is the
Pacific Ocean, on the deck of the huge
steamship China – The Pacific ocean
is so large that you cannot tell from
the name whether I am at the North
pole or at the South Pole, or on the
equator or anywhere else. I will
tell you how you can find out
just exactly where I am. Ask
papa
Birth: 1839-06-18 Death: 1920-04-29
to take a long thread, fasten
it at one end at the top of the big
globe in the dining room, draw it
Page 2

downwards on the parallel of
longitude 36 ^143.30^ degrees ^west^ and 35 minutes
and fasten the other end at the
bottom of the globe. Then ask
mamma
Birth: 1839-11-18 Death: 1913-11-09
to take another long
thread and wind it around the
globe in the lalyitu parallel of
north latitude, 36 degrees and 35
minutes, the place where the two
strings cross, will be just the place
where this day at 12 o’clock noon,
I am telling these words to your
friend Olive Risley
Birth: 1844-07-15 Death: 1908-11-27
, and she is
writing them down, because my
right hand is naughty and
refuses to do it for me. I am as
I have told you on the broad
ocean of waters – no shores,
no islands in sight, one thousand
and twenty miles from San
Francisco
, the last land we
saw, almost four thousand
Page 3

miles from Yokohama the first
land we are to see. The sea is
smooth as the Owasco Lake, the sky
bright, an awning shades us from
the sun. The last bird has ceased
to follow us on our track, and as
yet we have seen neither whale
nor porpoise, nor shark, nor dol-
phins, nor flying fish, nor any
other inhabitants of the deep. The
passengers are many and agreeable.
The crew are all China men. Olive
Risley and Hattie
Birth: 1850-03-05 Death: 1925-07-27
are well. Gov.
Randall
Birth: 1819-10-31 Death: 1872-07-26
and Mrs. Randall
Birth: 1845-10-02 Death: 1918-10-06
are
also well – Cousin George
Birth: 1840-11-08 Death: 1910-11-28
and your
new cousin, his wife
Birth: 1850-06-06 Death: 1934-06-15
, the same –
and William Freeman also –
They all have been somewhat
seasick, but have mostly recovered.
Four or five hours hence at farthest,
a steam ship, just as large as this,
will come right-along side of us
on her way from Yokohama to
San Francisco – The engines of
Page 4

the two ships will stop, the Captains
will speak to each other through brass
trumpets across the waves, we shall
tell the passengers of the other ship
that we are all well and have
been five days at sea, and they
will tell us if they are all well and
how many days they have been at
sea – the two ships will exchange
mail bags, and in the bag that leaves
this ship, will go this letter as fast
as steam can carry it, over the
sea and over the land to Auburn –
I hope it will find you all ^both^ well,
Papa and mamma also, Auntie
Worden
Birth: 1803-11-01 Death: 1875-10-03
, grandmother
Birth: 1812-03-30 Death: 1893-11-13
and all the
other aunts and cousins, and
Miss Parkman
Birth: 1857-01-25 Death: 1933-12-27
.
Hand Shiftx

William Seward

Birth: 1801-05-16 Death: 1872-10-10
William H Seward
Birth: 1844-07-15 Death: 1908-11-27
This has been written under great
difficulties, as you can see – a great
deal of love from us all, dear little
Nellie and William, to all the good people you
love and we love –
Olive