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Manuscript Diary, Groton, Massachusetts, 1846

By White, Edward Young

small quarto, original roan spine, heavy paper wrappers, front cover detached, 88 pages of manuscript entries dated from July 15, 1846 -December 5, 1846, neatly inscribed in a small, legible hand, very good. Manuscript diary of a well educated young man, his entries are detailed, literate and leave a sensitive, introspective record of White's thoughts and activities. White's diary is also of interest for its record of White's inner struggles, with his faith, and his own "worldly desires." White's diary entries and writing seem to help him tremendously as a source of release. White is engaged in the practice of dentistry. He travels extensively, attends the latest social functions, and records his thoughts or day's events, while sitting by his window with pen and paper in hand surrounded by his books. White, born circa 1820, is a member of one of New England's oldest family's, one of his ancestors, Peregrine White, is said to have been born on the Mayflower in Provincetown Harbor, November 20, 1620, the first native-born New Englander. Some examples of events in White's diary are as follows: Benjamin Haydon's suicide, a renowned schoolmarm by the name of "Whiting", long detailed descriptions of Boston, the New Swedenborgian Chapel, a rather famous architect named "Billings", White's visit to the Gallery of Paintings and Statuary, his witness of three men forcing a knife on another man, sailing on "Sandy Pond", a description of the city of Lowell, Van Amburgs' Caravan of trained animals, Indian Head Coffee House, the Souhegan River, the new foot bridges, the famous singing Hutchinson family, the Townsend Female Seminary, horseback rides, long walks, animal magnetism, ships coming into the wharf, etc. White also includes a detailed description of two of his patients, sisters, who are Shakers, which is of interest. On another occasion White gets a long personal "reading" from Mr. O.S. Fowler (Orson Squire Fowler) the well known phrenologist. (White has included his "reading" within the pages of this journal.) At another point some friends give him an arrow head that they found on Cape Cod which he traces on one of the pages in his diary and relates the circumstances of its discovery, along with the body of an Indian next to it. He is also found visiting the Chinese Museum, while at the museum, he meets a Chinese artist who impresses White greatly, and seems captivated by him. He describes the way his hands move, the way he looks, his drawings. In fact, this man would also appear to sign White's journal. Some sample entries follow: July 21st There were 97 deaths here last week. 12 from consumption. Very much fatigued, operating all day. Strolled this evening into Burnham's antiquarian books store and bought me what I have long wanted, Tupper's Proverbial Philosophy. If there be anything for long and covet, and with which I am tempted, it is books. What a treat to step into Burnham's and search among the rare old volumes. Saw Dr. Channing this morning. He appears very easy and unrestrained. He is very plain, wears his hair pretty long, and it falls in curls. He slightly reminds me of Audubon. There have been several deaths some murders here lately, and the myriad dram shops of rum flows like a river. July 23rd Last evening I went out to Charleston and spent the night with Cousin Francis. We walked to the monument. How solemn and grand the plain shaft bearing no inscription stands in its solitary Majesty. The grounds around it have been much improved of late and buildings are being put up on the back of the hill next ______. Oh! Thou silent memorial of the departed brave. I have unutterable thoughts from thee. The shades of night forbid our going up. Once, and the only time when on the summit, a fire broke out far down in the street below. The men looked no bigger than bees about a hive. We walked farther on in high street towards the convent ruins and came to a beautiful Gothic cottage occupying a commanding situation. Boston, Charleston, and the neighboring towns are in view. I am half crazed with the love of the Gothic..... July 25th This morning when I awoke the rain fell fast and pleasantly. I rose and looking from the windows saw high up in the clouds, the summit of the monument dim and almost imperceptible. Like a dream shadow, the base shrouded in the thick clouds and mist. At the end of the long wharf lays a ship that brought in three hundred Dutch. She was bound for Philadelphia but sprung a leak and was forced to put in here. Their mate lost his life on the passage by the hands of some of the crew, who killed him with an ax. They are now in custody. Some of the poor immigrants, soaking their black miserable heads. How wretched! Poor suffering humanity, and yet they looked almost cheerful. How I looked upon the poor widows in a foreign land. Some of them wore wooden shoes thick and large, turning high up at the tow. There seemed about them something honest and good-natured, but so ignorant so groveling. How dimly must the spirit life burn in these. Yet there are immensity's in and around them, as Carlyle says, and having souls, creation, eternity. Words from wisdom's mouth that cannot be unspoken. I love to loiter on the wharf where the harbor is in view, its islands, the distance sail on its bosom, and the strange sounds of foreign voices breaking on the ear, outlandish looking sailors in groups, and at work. The shades of the evening have fallen and I'm still near the ships. August 1st (At the Chinese Museum) ...the most interesting object to me after all was ISOW CHAOONG. Who was seated by a desk with his box and brushes before him. Writing cards for those who wished their name being in English and Chinese. I conversed with him some and he made himself somewhat intelligible in English, said he would let me have some Indian ink when his, which was just sent for, came from China, which would be some months first. He wore his hair after the manner of his countrymen. One long cue from the back of the head all the rest shaved. His cue was about 4 feet in length. He had rather an intelligent countenance. As he sat, his form was not much exposed but the fine blue silk dress with loose sleeves, from which came two such delicate beautiful, formed hands. So very comfortable, easy, that I began to covet. Nails half or an inch long. Some say they are false, I don't know. But those hands! Taper fingers!! August 3rd Been in a hurry, and whiry to get ready to go up to Littleton tomorrow. So I leave Boston again and I am not sorry, yet I love sometimes to be here and muse among the crowd. I always see a poor orange woman at the corner of the street were I pass daily sitting patiently as if her trust was all in providence. Poor wretch, with a soul and all its immensities. How much misery, opulence, in this great city. My thoughts are on the end of the earth, and for sympathy. August 16th Coming down "the hill" in the shades of evening such a view of the past is welling up. Strange mysterious life. Fearful to live, fearful to die, fearful to think. The nights at home seem more beautiful, more filled with spiritual light. Again how shall I speak of so wonderful a spirit, one whose soul over flows it's banks and over throws me, and then---- Why is it? Shall I even ask? And never know? My heart is faded by its heat. August 31st This afternoon I have been in a hop yard. The "Pickers" merrily worked and gaily sung, old friends they were, all wedded to past memories. In the evening we sat in the door with the moon so softly looking in upon us chatting of the dear past of our characters heads, the hearts left out. As we sat there, sweetly conversing in the moonlight, I repeated some lines, they called them beautiful. One said she remembered some lines of mine, she thought the mine. How she came by them, I don't "keu" nor care, so the "dreamy past" does not die. We arose and walked standing on the rustic bridge. We sang. The still waters gave back, all the bright splendor of the "mother of the wildly working visions". The dim shadowy outline of the wood laying in rich masses of light and shadow. Our voices sang out in the silent night, and our hearts with, "an inward melody." Half stayed in the magic scene as we came slowly to my carriage. I am seated. They stand before me, five of them; they're happy faces now beautiful in this a poet's day. They must go. He turns to them. They are silent. He speaks. "The vision and the voice are one. Their influence carried away, like music over a summer lake at the golden close of day. September 5th My patients this afternoon have been three Shakers, two sisters and brother. The oldest sister, Olive, is quite intelligent, a reader, thinker and a proctess, but sociable and agreeable. The youngest sweet flower of celibacy, is really pretty, eighteen or twenty. Summery, a beautiful specimen of humanity. They examined my humble collection of books with great interest. They are believing in phrenology at their request I noticed the cerebral of Warren. The character agreed in all points with the description given. Olive's description was as satisfactory. Both well marked heads. They gave me a very handsome invitation to call upon them at their board, Harvard South house. They expressed in a courteous and handsome manner the satisfaction with their operations I performed for them. September 17th Came home this afternoon and am in a world full of books, instruments and thoughts getting ready to go to Milford, the first of the week. Some friends have just returned from a visit to Wellfleet on Cape Cod with a glowing description of the place. He gave me an Indian arrow found on the high land of the Cape. I regarded with the utmost pleasure as a relic of an exterminated race. It is of a kind of a brown flint and in this form (this is where he draws the picture). Within a few years, the skeleton of what was apparently an Indian chief was found near the place from which the arrow came. The sand had blown off and head being exposed was discovered. It was buried in a standing posture. There are many relics of the Indians found on the cape. October 8th The Hutchinson family pretend to be tea tottlers but an individual told me this morning, that last evening, Judson told him in the p____ that he wished he had some wine or brandy to drink and said "I've had some two or three times already today." So much for his tea totalism.... Yesterday a patient lately from Peoria Indiana gave me the tusk of a wild boar which he shot on the high lands between ___________ and the Mississippi. The boar came suddenly upon him as he was charging his rifle. He ran for a tree from which he shot him, but not till it had killed his dog in the battle.... October 16th Last evening, I walked to Milford and heard O. S. Fowler lecture. He does not speak with the ease of his brother L. It is the matter alone that makes his lectures interesting. In personal appearance he is plain, and awkward in his movements. Tall, thin, high narrow forehead. His remarks were first upon the skin, its' nerves and network.... October 19th Here I am again in my room at the hotel at Amherst. It is a pleasant one, large and fronts to the east. I am snugly seated with books, instruments, writing material &c. and now let me look back. As I come down to cross the Souhegan on the little footbridge, the Hutchinson's are just coming over; they were leaving for a singing tour of several months. Ace come first and in his hand carrying his base viot and bookery, so bright and impulsive, he bowed smitingly. I half magnetized him. Abby came next and a lady with her. I never saw her so near before, her eyes are as blue or gray, just a moment.... October 22nd For days, weeks, I've had a kind of morbid nervousness, and it has not passed all way yet. But I am decidedly better. I am aware that most of my sufferings rise from as Fowler says, "superabundance of brain" to highly wrought. My motto must be "keep cool" and the more muscular. Tea and coffee for the president or laid aside and very little liquid taken during meals. October 23rd All is very quiet and still here in Amherst. Two new enterprises are just now moving the citizens at little; one is the erection of a steam mill, the other the Souhegan Railroad. I called today professionally at the Atherton's. The family mansion is a little out of the village, but in a rather pleasant location. It possesses for me, one charm, at least, it is large. The room in which I was shown was high and spacious. Glass sideboards, containing books, covered one center side of the room. Nothing is more disgusting to me then small contracted rooms. In all my fancy pieces are large old rooms, long galleries, wide stairways and the books. Books and the other soul, but tis an air drawn dagger. October 24th Been operating today at the Atherton's for Miss Mary Ann. The "honorable" just made his appearance. The house is so spacious and so filled with books that I vaguely realize; some half forgotten dream. This patient of mine is subject to fits, it is said, but the family do not acknowledge it. The family is the first on the place and of course aristocrats. Finished my operation at the Atherton's at five this afternoon quite fatigued. I gathered up my things and rode in the cold night air to Milford.... November 1st This evening, the Reverend Mr. Seymour lectured about the sufferings and difficulties attending the missionaries who labor among the Indians. He has been with the Chippewa's near the sources of the Mississippi. For four years a plants flower was the only bed or the softest he had. I was quite interested in his remarks. He gave a true account of the Indian revenge, and how precisely like the whites with the same amount of intellect. Human nature all. Once he built his fire and lay down in the solitary wilderness far from any human being.... I live in much solitude of soul. I have untold aspirations, but I fear they are too selfish. I thirst for knowledge, thirst. It is a burning thirst. Vivid drowning thoughts almost darken the mind by their numbers. The come and carry me along in their wild rushings November 21st, I pass out of the quiet sedate Amherst and am now rising the high land, which separates the two villages. On the left is a wood to the north and west lay a wide prospect, Mount Vernon is seen in the distance. A traveler is approaching. He has on his back I little bundle of clothes. His dress is very coarse but whole and clean. I will say a word to cheer him in life's rough way. He stops and speaks kindly. He is simple. He is going to the north. I wish him a pleasant and happy journey, as he passes along he half turns and says, "May you have success now and in the world to come.... December 4th, I found my Chinese I so loved before, Isow Chaoong in his old place writing with his beautiful tapered fingers. He is the same gentle unassuming being. He wonderfully excites my sympathies and my friend seemed interested with his appearance. He had procured the Indian ink he had sent to China for and he gave me the cake he promised me. It is excellent. I asked him to sell me to brush such as he used, he gave me one and presenting it smiled so pleasant that I shall never forget the gentle stranger. So with another call at a daguerrean room, result a good picture, we past dream land once more."


Manuscript Articles of Agreement, Linden (or Lincoln?) May 11th, 1850
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Manuscript Articles of Agreement, Linden (or Lincoln?) May 11th, 1850

By Christian, Preston K., And Marvel M. Jones

handwritten. Very Good. Manuscript. quarto, one page docketed in ink on verso, sixteen lines on light blue sheet of paper. Old creases and folds, few ink smears, else a very good clean copy. Articles of agreement between Christian and Jones: "Wherein the said Christian agrees to furnish team and hall [sic] the outfitt [sic] to California for the said Jones Wilson W. Jones and Wilson P. Jones. The said Jones agrees that himself and W. W. Jones and W. P. Jones will do their proportionall [sic] part of the labor while on the journey and the said Marvel Jones further agrees to pay the said Christain the sum of three hundred and twenty five dollars when they arrive in California.." Rare contract for transport on the overland journey to California during the second summer of the Gold Rush. The document suggests that Linden, possibly in Indiana, is the origin of the document, however it is more likely that a Missouri point would be the more likely starting point for the journey, perhaps Lincoln, Missouri.


Autograph Letter Signed, London, Admiralty Office, May 7th, 1803 to Admiral Sir John Thomas Duckworth, Jamaica

By Nepean, Evan, (1751-1822)

Manuscript. Very Good. folio, two pages, inscribed on a four page bi-folium, formerly folded, docketed in ink on last blank leaf, in very good clean condition. Letter marked "Secret" from Nepean, Secretary to the Board of Admiralty, to Sir John Thomas Duckworth, (1747-1817) Commander in Chief at Jamaica, advising Duckworth of the imminent outbreak of hostilities with France. "I am commanded by my Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to acquaint you that the discussions which have taken place between his Majesty and the First Consul of the French Republic have taken so unfavourable a turn as may probably lead to immediate Hostilities between the two Countries, and to signify their Lordships direction to you to hold yourself in a constant state of Preparation to act as circumstances may be found to require the moment you shall receive farther Instructions from their Lordships upon the subject. You will also give directions to the Commanders of your cruisers to apprise the Masters of any Merchant Ships or Vessels they may fall in with of the critical state of Public Affairs, that they may be upon their guard in case of their falling in with any French Ships or Vessels which may eventually be ordered to intercept them." War did erupt shortly after this letter was written, in the Battle of San Domingo, Duckworth's fleet defeated that of French Rear-Admiral Leissegues near Santo Domingo, off the coast of Hispaniola.


Autograph Letter Signed to General John Barrington, Fort Royal, Guadeloupe, April 1, 1759

By Cunninghame, Col. William

folio, two pages, inscribed on four page bi-folium, docketed in ink on rear leaf, paper somewhat stained holes in paper affecting text of about seven words, in upper portion of each page, however the sense of the letter is unaffected, else good. Cunninghame writes to Barrington concerning Governor Melvill who commanded the Citadel at Port Royal and the general state of affairs there during a crucial point in the British campaign to take Guadeloupe. Cunninghame writes: "Sir By what Governor Melville has explained to me of the express to you of the 30th, the strain of it is so different from his first Reports of the Garrison that I need say noth[ing] more than that he now saw with his own eyes an[d shall?] be henceforth guided by his own judgment. The [true] cause of the gloom of that report was his being much out of Order and Confin'd so that he was obliged to depend on the representations of those that had not a proper view of the state of this Garrison. But since he has had time to consider and reflect on every Circumstance attending this place. I beg leave to confirm the opinion you formerly had that no Officer of your army will fulfill the duty of a Governor with more intelligence, circumspection and resolution than W. Melville (Barrington had appointed Melvill governor a week earlier) . We got here in time last night to make a tour of the works and its circuit superficially. The Enemy has got a Bomb Battery of one Mortar as the deserters say on the top of that green hill where a body of troops first appeared that day we attacked them under your command on the south side of the gallion. The gun battery reported is on the same side the trench under the large green tree the left commanding the Beach, the right towards the Jesuits on the south of the gallion I think exactly as the place our people used to fire so much upon while we were here. There are two guns and will probably open in a day or two. I beg'd the Governour to assemble all the Offic[ers to]night. In their prescence I explained to them the situation The reason of the commanding officer . and me being sent to them, your intentions toward them and [the] absolute necessity there was of defending this p[lace] to the last extremity against an impotent . and dispirited enemy . I beg'd to know if any one had doubts or apprehensions It was answered there was none there that wou'd not chuse to die in the Breach rather than give up the place improperly." The island of Guadeloupe was one of the most profitable of all the French colonies and as such was a prime target of the British during the conflict of the Seven Years War. The British forces attacked the neighboring island of Martinique on January 6, 1759 bombarding the town of Port Royal. The English forces under General Hopson and Commodore John Moore made an abortive attempt to capture the town. The bombardment of Basse Terre, Guadeloupe began on January 23, 1759, by Commodore Moore's squadron prior to its invasion by British troops. On January 24, an invasion force under General Hopson captured the town. General Hopson died on Guadeloupe on February 23, he was succeeded in command by Major-General John Barrington. The French surrendered the island to the British under General Barrington on May 1, 1759, after a three month campaign. The island was occupied by the British for four years and was returned to the French by the terms of the Treaty of Paris in 1763. France in order to retain Guadeloupe signed away her claims to Canada under this treaty. Despite the condition problems a most interesting letter from this campaign, material from which is extremely scarce.