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MVB to Jesse Hoyt, 1 February 1829


My Dear Sir:

I am distressed by Lorenzos accounts of your affairs in Nyork. When will the Republican Party be made sensible of the indispensable necessity of nominating none but true & tried men, so that when they succeeded they gain something. The same game that is playing with you was in a degree played here on the nomination of Attorney General. Alth The principal ^only^ personal objection that was made to Mr Butler was his conduct last winter in regard to the Clinton Bill & I believe that every Clintonian in both houses voted agt. him except Charles Livingston, of whose vote I am advised. MrB. depended upon your city vote & would have succeeded if he had got it. Cargill Arnold Alburtus & Mr Allen voted for him, beyond that nothing is Known. I must insist upon your 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 & say to him that I have not been able to follow his advice in relation to the Health appointments & hope to satisfy him when I see him that I have done right. The claims of DrWestervelt were taking all things into the account decidedly the strongest & much was due to the relation in which he stood to Govr. Tompkins, especially from one who knew so well what the latter has done & 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 & a man of talent, of a Whig family and a Democrat from his cradle. He was three years in the hospital & five years Deputy Health officer until he was cruelly removed through the instrumentality of DrHarrison who to my knowledge owed his appointment to the unwearied & incessant perseverance of Govr Tompkins. Havens has been at the station but a year & 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 DrWestervelt and the board of health would retain him in his present station. I cannot dismiss DrManley. His extraordinary capacity is universally admitted & his poverty & misfortunes 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. MrClinton was so sensible of it that he once actually nominated him for Health officer & 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 & as he was a zealous Jackson man at the last election that could not have been done without danger. Remember me kindly to Mrs H. Butler feels less than any of his friends. I had promised not to interfere & did not.

Yours truly,




This letter was published in, Mackenzie, The Life and Times of Martin Van Buren, 206-207. 

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Source: OTARL Archives of Ontario
Collection: Mackenzie-Lindsey Family Fonds (OTARL)
Series: Series 5 (1 January 1825-3 March 1829)