D[aniel] Webster to MVB, 27 September 1828
Sep. 27 28
My Dear Sir
I recd yours this morning, & my first inclination was that I would meet you & Mr Cowles at New York, on the 4th Oct. according to your suggestion. I find, however, on reflection, that I have engagements, which would render that day, rather an inconvenient one, for such an appointment. Engagements are on me, for the latter end of next week, which it is not easy to shake off. I am disposed, however, to conform to your suggestion, in its general object, & varied only as to time. At the same time, it may be worth considering, whether it be not practicable to accomplish the object by one journey, instead of two. In other words, whether it would ^not^ be as useful, in regard to the main object, & less inconvenient to ourselves, to be in NYork four or five days before the sitting of the Court. Upon reflection, this rather appears to me to be, under all circumstances, the preferable course. Still, I do not feel positive about it; & if it be, in your mind, matter of doubt, the previous conference is the safer mode, & ought to be adopted. What has led to this impression, on my mind is, that we have no testimony, that I am aware of, farther off than Putnam County; that our ^chief^ labor will be, to consider, <illegible> how best to use what materials we have; & that coming together, four days before the Court, each having, in the meantime, turned his attention to all known questions in the cause, if there will be time enough to settle the course of the defense, & summon witnesses on any new points, if such should occur to us. It would be somewhat disagreeable to me thus to extend the time of my stay in NYork, at the time of the trial; but on the whole I should prefer this, to another journey.
Nevertheless, My Dear Sir, I am disposed to follow your lead, because you have a better view of the whole ground, as well as for other reasons. Therefore I will meet you and Mr Cowles at NYork, any time after hearing from you, ^but^ so as that I can be home again by the 15 or 16 October.
You will probably receive this the morning of the first. If you answer by return of Post, I shall hear from you by the 5th & can meet you in N York, the 8th 9th 10th 11th or 12th, if you should so conclude.
Allowing me three days after the proper time for the arrival of your letter, you may expect my attendance, on any ^day^ you may mention, within the above mentioned period.
So much for "the weightier matters of the law"
As to the rest, My D Sir, I do not hear that the "political health of my friends," in the great state needs, at present, either prescription or nursing. If not decidedly good, we are assured it is very satisfactorily convalescent. That state, we learn, is likely to enjoy soon what is said to comprize the whole substance of mortal bliss – "sana mens, in corpore sano".
Adieu! I would give you the Spanish benediction, ("God preserve your Excellency a thousand years!") but that I have not yet heard from Herkimer, and you have not informed me what orders you sent up. But masters must be sometimes servants; do you not find it so?
Editorial Note: Printed in Papers of Daniel Webster: Correspondence, 2:365-366.