Washington April 29th 1838

 

My dear Sister,

 

Mr. Barry has written to me “that the School

bears a hhigh reputation & has the best recommendations – at present

there are but few scholars” if Father wishes me I will

go then myself & make minute inquiry.

 

I expect the Millenium for the people of these U.S. will come, when

the Whigs get into power.  if ever more violated truth & principal

outraged justice committed lawful & wicked acts against the peace

& good of the people. then according to the Whigs the Administrative

party are doing – now & have long been, taking such a daming

course.  If I can now view such measures with abhorence, and

profess themselves the inclination/ if they had the power/ to act in the

contrary manner, to do all, that would be right &  proper, to forget

party & themselves, to think & --- for the --- & benefit of the

community at large.  then according to their own account

are the Whigs.  I judge of neither. but such is the -----

of the talk I have heard at the table.  I think I shall become what

is rarely seen, a quiet Politician.  And now the Whigs are in the

height of rejoicing because of this unexpected --- in --- quar-

ters the are triumphing over the Admin party in all ----

 

Some Emperor in older times offered a reward for the invention

of a new pleasure.  I purchased a new --- the other day – when

I became the owner of an umbrella – a thing which I have scarcely

used for the last 7 years – the sensation I experienced at having one

actually my own property, was quite “novel, like a child with a coveted

plaything.

 

I will inform you as soon as I can learn it of the results of a

interesting inquiry under progrssion here – “whether the clothing

of a negro in finery affects his pride – if it makes him more vain &

ostentatious than the ragged dri— of a hack.”  A learned professor

is conducting it & the A— would expect a large pamphlet

as the result of his wonderful labours.

 

If I am drinking ale to become fat – such cannot be the case

with D--- H. Lewis the Hon. Member from Alabama, he’s

about 200 lbs. larger than Mcpenoop, & daily takes the most

active & violent exercises – walking up & down Capitol Hill, with

vigorous determination and giving profuse employment to his

Bandana at every step.  I ---- his wish is “Oh! that

this too solid flesh would melt”.  which wish I think will be

accomplished, if he persevers in his Efforts.  It’s a rare &

amusing spectacle to see him toiling so earnestly – panting &

palpitating all the while, like a child about to be whipped or

a man going to be hanged ----.  I have watched him

until to have looked longer would have been rude.

 

Yesterday was a charming day – again the band played & again

the Capitol grounds were through with beauty & fashion.  I wonder

Any them unknown & unnoticed, but I asked George for some of

my favourite tunes - & listened to them with exceeding delight.

If you will be pleased to conc --- of the most dem---  ---

of comparison, such as a Lion & a Mouse, an Elephant &

Art, or any thing in that way, then you will know how slightly

I am reminded of those sunset hours, at dear

delicious, well rembered Naples, here were the assembled people,

the few equipages, the strains of music, and a view which has

claim to the picturesque, but then was wanting, the noble bay

tne towering mountain, with its pillar of smoke, the classic

associations, the soft & entrancing notes of Italian muse, the

pomp & splendour of royalty, the glittering cortege of nobility.

and the garden, which bears the name & merits the title of "The

King”, Ah Naples!  When shall I forget thee! Never, when shall I

see thee? soon I hope.         Nevertheless it is pleasant to

pass ab hour or two in this wise. All civilised person should

harken unto music twice a week at least. Men cannot harbour evil

thoughts when under its influence & therefore for an hour or two,

they can be good.

 

While twilight lasts, the terrace around the Capitol ia alive

with Promenaders. is it singular, that most of them should be

young & coupled in pairs, masculine & feminine, "is that the hour"

& the place, "when severs vows " &c &c   I do not pretend to know,

but such is the fact, and to those persons, I give praise for their

taste.   From that terrace, when the glow of the sun, has gone,

the view is perfection, of the Avenue, is fine, and one which

I take great pleasure in contemplation every evening, it is like

looking through a camera obscure, or thru one of those microscope

things in the Museums, there is no harshness, every thing is

softened & mellowed by the twilight. A mile from you, where the

street approaches to a point, you see the people crossing & the

carriages moving along distinctly, but they are dwindled into

mere specks, while the objects that are nearer to you appear to

increase gradually in dimension till just below you they assume

their full size, the defects are not perceived & the whole scene

has all the beautiful accuracy of a picture.

 

I had a letter from Mr. May to day, he will be here in a few

days, and I shall be a great deal with him, his sister is a beauty

& a Belle, and I shall move from my seclusion, only when I go to

visit her, I hope she will prove a pleasant acquaintance,

doubtless she will, for I have always found the Soeurs of Brothers

with whom I have sailed, or withwhom I am on terms of friendship,

we generally have so much talk about them, that we know each other's

family, long before we meet them. I will go to Balt'e at all events

the latter part of May, or beginning of June, so as to be there

when May & Adams go before the Board.

 

I have to coaplain that as yet no newspaper has been received.

I beg you will not neglect men, as I will not go into society,

though daily I am beset with offers & invitations. I have plenty

of time to spare from study & duty to think of you all & to

wish to know all about you & the general welfare & doings of

Lancaster County, will you remember the request of

Your Brother   William

 

The writing of this & some of its preparer has been shocking,

but I could not do better.