MVB to DeWitt Clinton, 20 February 1809
Feby 20d 1809
I am really sorry to trouble you more with the party than you already are, especially when discretion and Ingratit[ude] are becoming the almost universal returns f[or] Favours rendered, the case however to wh[ich] I beg your attention is one of a nature to which I consider myself bound to pay every attention. Mr Abraham L Van Alen of this county has by some extravagance and considerable misfortune become so much embarrassed in his pecuniary affairs that it has become indispensibly necessary that his friends should procure a lone of three or four thousand Dollars for him to save him from ruin. Owing to the extreme scarcity of money in the country it has not been in his or our power to raise the money here. He has been down to his Brother in Laws J. P Van Ness in Washington who had promised him the money but owing to some considerable disappointments in the receipt of money was not in a situation to
Albany help him. He however by power of attorney has authorised his Brother William P. to Loan the money for him in this State and to give for security his Bond or a mortgage on his Estate in this county. Our Bank is not in a situation to do it nor likely soon to become. I have been to Albany and made an Ineffectual application to the State Bank, they say that they have never made loans of the description I required, and that from the Complexion of there directors & Van Alens known political character I was satisfyed It cou was not necessa[ry] to request our friends to make the attempt on my return from Albany I promised Mr Van Alen that I would write to you to sa ascertain whether it would not be in your power to obtain the Loan for him from the State ^Manhattan^ bank or some Individual of your acquaintance. The time required will 12 or 18 months & the security unquestionable. M
Mr Van Alen has been one of the most active and usefull friends in this county and a very gre[at] part of the debts he owes have been incurred
in by the support of the party. I know of no man who I m would feel more pleasure in helping. I was at Albany at the time of the appointment of Senat[ors] the western & northern members behaved nobly. Your southern folks talk very mildly.