Rufus King to MVB, 24 September 1822

Rufus King to MVB, 24 September 1822


My dear Sir

I received at Boston a letter from you, and yesterday two others. I was about a fortnight, and except two days in Boston, passed my time at Waltham. My friend Mr Gore has been, & continues to be, in feeble Health, tho' he has somewhat recoverd, and while I was with him, so much so, as to be free from Pain. Had you been able to join me, I would have spent more time in Boston, and should have been disposed to have extended my visit and to have gone, as far as Ports mouth, or Portland. I saw little of the Otises, dined en famille with them, but had no conversation about Washington; the ladies were well & the younger appeared in better Health and spirits. I had no political conversations with him, and heard from others little about him, except that he is going deeply into Schemes of Manufactures, which in that quarter are said to be profitable above all other Business. The Company at Waltham last year divided at the rate of thirty percent on their Capital of 600.000 dollars. Mr Otis is in favor of Adams, as are most politicians Here, and from the strong disapprobation expressed in Boston against Russell, I also infer that Adams is their favorite Candidate. I saw my Brother in Boston, who continues to be devoted to Crawford.

The Editor of the Washington Republican sends me his Paper, so that I have seen the Articles which your imputed Friendship for Noah procures you, but they are so insignificant, and so general, that they cannot be worth your attention. Did they contain a charge that affects your Reputation, I should certainly remember it; but I recollect nothing, except the Editor’s opinion that Noah is under your influence, and being in favor of Crawford, that you also must be of this Sect. You may have reservations, that some People place me also under the same influence, I make no disavowal, except so far as to say that as yet I have not enlisted into the Crawford-Corps, sufficient to the Day, will be the evils thereof, and such if I am right in my Recollection, has been your way of thinking on this subject. The Prevalence of the Fever in the City, has cut off my Communication with and thro' the same. So that I see no one, except my island neighbours, nor hear any thing, save a scrap now & then, of the Politics, which compose the gossiping News of the day. A Mr Nolte who was my fellow Passenger to Boston, spoke of having met with you and Mr Archer at the Springs, the insatiate Archeras he called him, is said to have failed with Miss C. whom I saw at a Ball given by Mrs. <Haas> the Evening before I left Boston, and who as I inferred, from her caution, on my mentioning her having met with Mr. Archer in her Tour, felt as ladies are apt to do, after such an occurrence. Mr Calvert too is said to have been cruelly refused by Miss D, if this anecdote be correct, the proposal will be renewed at Washington, this winter, and I must alter my interpretations of the mothers character, or she will work a Change in the mind of Miss Julia, leaving them Bagatelles, I return to you; who is Genl. Brackenridge with whom the gossips report you to have had a dispute, & why do they busy themselves concerning you? Precisely because you are a Gentleman of influence and distinction. Were you like themselves, you would not be spoken of for good or for evil. You must make up your mind to hear of these idle tales, and to hear of them will that indifference which their insignificance deserves. There are very few articles in the news papers, that a discreet man is required to take notice of, and unless his moral character be concerned, perhaps there are none.

Here we have little to say about Elections: I heard more in the short Time I was in Massachusetts, respecting their next Election of Govr. (for Brooks it is apprehended will decline) than I have heard at home respecting any or all of our Elections as there will be difficulties in Mass. Lincoln wd. be preferred by our Party, but Eustis will not give way, on the other side no name is yet mentioned. The result will be an Effort to prevail on Brooks to continue. 

Some days past the younger Miss Thompson, on her way to Rockaway, with some of her Brookline friends made me a short visit, an honor she would not have dared to done you. She told me that her Sister had written to her that you intend setting out for Washington in the be[. . .] I inferred that you desired to be there seasonably in order to prepare for win[. . .] myself easy respecting the condition in which we shd. find our Quarters a[. . .] Recollection of Terms, nor provisions, except that you desired Mr. Smh. Thompson [. . .] our Lodgings, and think it not improbable that you sent to him <illegible>[. . .]

We shd. want wood, candles, wine &c. who is to furnish them, whether he [. . .] wood or coals shd. be laid in seasonably. I recd. some time since a letter [. . .] quarters have changed masters, that the House is put in good Condi[tion] [. . .]ade no Reply. Tho' I am glad of the information, as in case we sh[. . .] comfortable with the french man, we might find accommodations [. . .]. I refer to you to do all, and whatever is to be done, preparatory to our going to Washington. Be good enough in your discretion to direct that a Load [of] Hay, will come 20 or 30 Bush's of Oats be laid in, and that the coach house and Stable be put in order.

I might fill up my Page, by saying a few words respecting the Conference, that you have had with the C. J[. . .] [per]haps I may as well defer the subject to a future occasion. Yet I may add, that in respect to the vote on the Proposition of Wh. as Explanation cannot be asked, so it need not be given. Tho' I might observe that neither the Ch. J. nor his Brethren manifested any favor to the same Proposition contained in the Report by Mr Munro in the judiciary. This report I believed might have been worked into a good System, but it was frowned upon by the Judges, and recd. with coldness or disfavor by the convention. The speech of Jno. Duer on Whs, proposition, expressed my sentiments, according to my previous Recolleciton, on the other point, which, if true, wd. be offensive and illiberal, I owe it to myself, and him, to say that the charge is not only not true, but that it is a premeditated falsehood.

with sincere Esteem & Regard, I am my dear Sir

your faithful & obedient Servant

Rufus King

Editorial Process Complete
Editorial Note:

An excerpt of this letter was printed in Friedenberg, 78.