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Brother Morse is deeply engaged in a 2d edition of his Geography, and is taking pains to render it more complete than the former. But this is a science which will ever be improving, and will ever need amendments.
Mr. Wingate is chosen a representative of New Hampshire in the next Congress.
Pray let me know if the box which I sent arrives safe, and how the books are disposed of. I beg you will take one set of the History and one copy of the Foresters to yourself, as a token of my regard and gratitude.
Your 1st volume remains exactly as when I wrote last. Not one has been called for since. I am, dear sir, Your friend and servant,
JERE. BELKNAP. ·
HAZARD TO BELKNAP.
PHILADELPHIA, February 2, 1793.
DEAR SIR, -Since my last, I have received yours enclosing the Presbyterian letters, for which I thank you. They will be useful. Should any thing else of the kind occur, I shall be happy in receiving it. Will not your own Church Book furnish me with some materials? Was not yours formerly a Presbyterian Church? Do favour me with that part of its history. When did it begin? When did it cease to be Presbyterian? Who were its ministers during that period? From whence came they? How long did each continue? With what Presbytery or Synod were they connected?
Can you tell when Presbyterians first came into New England, from whence, and for what cause; whether in consequence of persecution, or not? I shall be obliged to you for any information you can give which will do to insert in the history in contemplation.
Mr. Wingate paid me, some time ago, seven dollars and an half, on your behalf, but could not tell for what
particular use. Will you inform me? I delivered the subscription for Dr. Barton's book to Dobson.
My 2d volume is in the press. We have got to K. I have 2 sheets a day to correct.
We have had a very uncommon winter thus far, snow worth mentioning till the 30th ultimo, and that is melting very fast. The weather now is quite moderate. Love to Mrs. B. from Mrs. H. and
BELKNAP TO HAZARD.
BOSTON, March 2, 1793.
MY DEAR SIR,I have seen sometimes, in inspecting. my son's papers, that he receives by the post Dunlap's Daily Advertiser;* and it appears to me to be the best collection of historical matter, in the en passant way, that is printed anywhere. I have therefore thought of mentioning to our Historical Society the procuring a regular set of these papers, from the beginning, if they can be had, but certainly for the future. Now, to prepare the way, I wish you to inform n me :
1. How long this paper has been printed?
2. Whether a complete set, ab initio, can be had, and at what price? or how many volumes of it?
3. What is the price per annum?
4. Whether you would take the trouble of receiving them daily, and preserving them in folio order, so that we may have them in such parcels as may be convenient to send by water, say monthly, quarterly, or half-yearly, as circumstances permit? Perhaps Mr. D., on being acquainted with our institution, might give us his paper in future, as Mr. Fenno does, and several other printers. If
* See this Society's Catalogue, II. 217, under "Pennsylvania Packet," &c.·
you think it probable, I would write to him, and send him a circular letter, unless you will undertake it for me.
By a letter which I have just received from the Vicepresident of the United States, I am informed that Dr. Barton has presented to the Philosophical Society at Philadelphia a memoir on the subject of the Honey Bee, in opposition to what I wrote in the appendix to my Discourse, on the question whether that insect be a native of America. He says I am treated with respect, but his opinion is in favour of Mr. Jefferson's. I wish to have a copy of that memoir, if it can be procured; and I know of no person more likely to procure it than yourself. Send it to me by the next vessel. This is the second attack which has been made on my performance in public. I have, also, two or three private antagonists. I wish to collect all that has been or may be said against any of the opinions advanced in that pamphlet before I determine whether it be best to make any reply to them separately or in the lump.
Let me know whether the parcel I sent by Smith's vessel (I forget the master's name) be arrived, and whether they have been advertised in your papers. I do not expect a very sudden sale, but perhaps they may go off in time.
The Foresters have become a clever article in the shops, and the author has the pleasure of hearing people. compliment themselves on their sagacity in making the discovery. Adieu.
PHILADELPHIA, March 2, 1793.
MY DEAR SIR, -By the Abby, Captain Eames, I received yours of 8th ultimo, with account enclosed, the packet of Apollos, and the bundle of your Discourses. When I removed, I was obliged to pack up my books, papers, &c., and (as my new house, being unfinished, did not afford room enough for us) to leave them so. They are in this situation yet, so that I cannot compare your account with mine, but apprehend it is right. The 6 setts of the History and 9 copies of the Foresters, charged November 20th, 1792, and the Discourses on the Discovery of America, now received, are in Dobson's hands. Of the latter, there were 49. You charge but 4 dozen. Cornelia is much obliged to you for the copy of your Discourse sent her, and desires me to tell you so. Her little son is well. We are very sorry to hear of Mrs. Belknap's illness, but hope, as she was convalescent when you wrote, she will be perfectly recovered when you receive this.
Thank you for the further hints about Jedediah Andrews. The congregation are now busy pulling down the old church in which he preached, and intend building an handsome new one in its place.
Perhaps the divulging of the secret respecting the author of the Foresters may assist the sale of the History. With this view, I propose to lay my copy of the former on the table of the Insurance Office, as a subject of conversation.
The Society's circular letters are distributing. I wish I could comply with the request to the Corresponding Members; but what can I do? Nothing at present. May be the time may come when I shall be able to do something. I will, at least, comfort myself with the hope. When I
began to copy the Records of the United Colonies, I found in the same book a copy of the agreement about the boundaries between Plymouth and Massachusetts Colonies, which I transcribed. I send it to you that, if you think it will serve any valuable purpose, it may be preserved. It was crossed to prevent Dobson's printing it, and I have not time to copy it.
A party in Congress, who appear to have some sinister purposes to serve, have lately made a serious attack upon the Secretary of the Treasury, with a view to his removal from office. The newspapers will acquaint you with the "resolutions" they drew up against him. The business was finished in Congress last night, and terminated much to the Secretary's honour, there being a very great majority in his favour. Although a man of the Secretary's abilities and integrity need not fear an investigation of his official conduct, and a consciousness of rectitude would support him under the severest scrutiny, yet his sensibility must be wounded by the public and wanton attacks of the petulant and malicious. Time, it is true, will make his innocence appear; but what compensation has he for the interruption of his peace? Taking advantage of Congressional prerogative, a fool can ask more questions in a day than a wise man can answer in a month; and yet, should such an one be sent to Congress, every head of a department lies at his mercy. Answer him according to his folly, he grows angry, runs to tell Congress, and, to be sure, the officer must be dismissed, to put the gentleman in good humour again. I would almost as soon be a Virginia negro as a public officer under such a master. A knave can do at least as much mischief as a fool; and experience has shewn that neither will hesitate about the means for accomplishing their ends. I hope that neither knaves nor fools will ever be sent to Congress.
Mrs. H. sits yet in the corner. She has been three months confined by a sore ancle; and, after being wearied