MVB to Cornelius Peter Van Ness, 15 August 1823
MVB to C[ornelius] P[eter] Van Ness, 15 August 1823
On my return from the springs on a visit of two weeks I found your letter of the 1st. & hasten to reply to it. The efforts which have been made for the last six months
to create ^to^ excitement on you part ^agt me^ have doubtless been made with ^proceeded from^ sinister views ^motives^ & ^been made^ with an eye to the Presidential election. In I think ^ think I^ could name the man in your State who ^though not the agent^ has got <them> is the author of them. If at any time an opportunity has presented itself in which it became necessary for me to express ^distinctly^ the state of my feelings towards you of which I have now no distinct recollection such has certain certainly not been the case for the year past. Having said thus much for the occasion on which this matter has been introduced I will with answer your questions with the same frankness with which it is put & which I very highly approve. Entertaining for you a sincere regard growing out a respect for your <illegible> from full belief ^derived from our <the> <the> boyish intimacy in youth^ that however Strong your passions ^feelings^ might sometimes be they were always honestly entertained & frankly expressed I was anxious to distinguish the relations between us from those which existed between my your brother & myself. To this end whenever I saw you here or elsewhere I did not fail to manifest my wishes by the little ^such^ acts of civility ^as were^ in my power instead of professions which I now make. This continued untill I had occasion to make a small appeal to your friendship in favour of poor Cantine which proved unsuccessfull I did ^was^ not at the time feel satisfied with the reasons you assigned for not complying with my wishes. But apprehending that the State of things between your brother Wm. & myself might might expose me to unfounded suspicion and also that the circumstance of my so seldom making applications of that kind might render me ^it^ more difficult to be for me to book a refusal than other men indeed I succeeded in dismissing the doubts which I had imbibed of the sincerity of your friendship.
This thing remained untill the last winter I had the pleasure of seeing you in this City which I believe was in
that of 1821. When I called upon you invited you to dine with me had much friendly chat with you & endeavoured ^meant^ to satisfy you that my mind was at ease on the Subject to which I have alluded. After you left town I visited at thea house in this City who I regarded as our common friends & on my speaking of you, I was asked when, After your departure I was informed from a source I was not at liberty to question that I was deceived in my impressions as to your friendship & that you had whilst in this City expressed sentiments of strong personal hostility agt. me. I suffered this information acting upon what ha has past & connected with the extreme violence of your brothers feelings towards me to impress my mind with an active conviction that you was not & could not be entirely friendly to o me & determined for the future ^without acts of aggression^ to treat you with ^the^ respect which our early intimacy rendered proper & seemed ^fit^ to me to require but without that particular intimacy ^cordiality^ which had the case been otherwise I would have been happy to cherish. Such have been my feelings & such the cause of them. Since the receipt of your letter I have called on the person who gave me the information of your declaration ^the sentiments you were said to have expressed^ here. The y are ^Characters are^ distinctly rembered ^& again avowed^ but reasons ^exist^ which are satisfactory preventing me from mentioning the author at this time.
I shall certainly be happy to find that in this matter I have been deceived.
Dr Letter to
C P VanNess
August 15th. 1820