MVB to Jesse Hoyt, 1 February 1829
Feb. 1, 1829.
My Dear Sir:
I am distressed by Lorenzo's accounts of your affairs in New York. When will the Republican Party be made sensible of the indispensable necessity of nominating none but true and tried men, so that when they succeed they gain something? The same game that is playing with you was in a degree played here on the nomination of Attorney General. The only personal objection that was made to Mr. Butler, was his conduct last winter in regard to the Clinton Bill, and I believe that every Clintonian in both houses voted against him, except Charles Livingston, of whose vote I am advised. Mr. B. depended upon your city vote, and would have succeeded if he had got it. Cargill, Arnold, Alburtus, and Mr. Allen, voted for him—beyond that nothing is known. I must insist upon you not mentioning my name in connection with this subject in any form. Make it a point, if you please, to see my good friend CODDINGTON, and say to him that I have not been able to follow his advice in relation to the Health appointments, and hope to satisfy him when I see him that I have done right. The claims of Dr. Westervelt were, taking all things into the account, decidedly the strongest, and much was due to the relation in which he stood to Governor Tompkins, especially from one who knew so well what the latter has done and suffered for this State. I should forever have reproached myself if I could have refused so small a tribute to his memory. Westervelt is a gentleman and a man of talent, of a Whig Family, and a Democrat from his cradle. He was three years in the Hospital and five years Deputy Health Officer, until he was cruelly removed through the instrumentality of Dr. Harrison, who to my knowledge, owed his appointment to the unwearied and incessant perseverance of Governor Tompkins. Havens has been at the station but a year and has never seen a case of yellow fever in his life. All that I could do for him (and he has not a better friend in the world,) was to satisfy myself that Dr. Westervelt and the Board of Health would retain him in his present station. I cannot dismiss Dr. Manley. His extraordinary capacity is universally admitted; and his poverty, and misfortune in regard to the new Medical College which he brought into existence but failed to get a place in it, has excited a sympathy for him with medical men in all parts of the State of unprecedented extent. Mr. Clinton was so sensible of it that he once actually nominated him for health officer, and was upon the point of doing it again the very week when he died. His removal if made could only be placed on political grounds, and as he was a zealous Jackson man at the last election that could not have been done without danger.
Butler feels less than any of his friends.
I had promised not to interfere and did not.
M. V. BUREN.