1037
Alexander Hamilton
AUTOGRAPH LETTER TO ELIZABETH HAMILTON, SUGGESTING FOLK CURES FOR HER ILLNESS
Estimate
5,0007,000
LOT SOLD. 8,125 USD (Hammer Price with Buyer's Premium)
JUMP TO LOT
1037
Alexander Hamilton
AUTOGRAPH LETTER TO ELIZABETH HAMILTON, SUGGESTING FOLK CURES FOR HER ILLNESS
Estimate
5,0007,000
LOT SOLD. 8,125 USD (Hammer Price with Buyer's Premium)
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Alexander Hamilton: An Important Family Archive of Letters and Manuscripts

|
New York

Alexander Hamilton
AUTOGRAPH LETTER TO ELIZABETH HAMILTON, SUGGESTING FOLK CURES FOR HER ILLNESS
2 1/4 pages (9 x 7 5/8 in.; 258 x 195 mm) on a bifolium, [Philadelphia], 10 August 1791; signature cut away, together with a large portion of the lower and fore-edge margins of the second leaf, some early repairs to fold separations, some light stains, silked. Tipped to a larger sheet.
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Literature

The Papers of Alexander Hamilton, ed. Syrett, 9:25–26

Catalogue Note

"Dear Betsey—beloved Betsey—Take care of yourself—Be attentive to yourself—Use every mean that promises you benefit." Hamilton had traveled to Brunswick, New Jersey, to assist with the organization of the Society for Establishing Useful Manufactures, which eventually obtained a charter from New Jersey. During his absence, his three-year-old son, James Alexander Hamilton, had been stricken by fever. While James made a full recovery, Eliza, who had been nursing him, contracted the same illness. In the present letter, Hamilton expresses his gratitude for James's recuperation—and his near frenzy that his wife try every possible cure to restore her own health.

“This day, my beloved, on my return from Brunswick I received your precious letters of the 31 of July & 3d. of August. I was surprised to find you had received none from me; as without recollecting dates, I think one, which I wrote you, before my departure from New York, ought to have got to hand previous to your last.” [None of the three letters Hamilton references here have been located.]

“You will easily imagine how much pleasure it gives me to learn that my Dear James was better: but then My Betsey, your health had suffered by your anxiety and you were not so well as when you left me! Think how afflicting an alloy this is. For Heaven’s sake, do not yield too much to the little adverse circumstances that must attend us in this pilgrimage. Exert your fortitude. Keep up your spirits. Never forget for a moment the delight you will give me by returning to my bosom in good health. Dear Betsey—beloved Betsey—Take care of yourself—Be attentive to yourself—Use every mean that promises you benefit.

“You say you have not forgotten your bark & Vitriol. But have you constantly remembered it? Have you used the other remedy also?

“I have a wish that you would try the Cold bath, beginning by degrees. Take the air too as much as possible and gentle exercise.

“I am myself in good health & only want you with me, & in health also, to be as happy as it is reasonable to wish to be. But I charge you (unless you are so anxious as to injure you, or unless you find your health declining more) not to precipitate your return. I cannot help hoping that your native air if taken long enough will be of service to you.

“Adieu My angel. Assure yourself always of my tenderest affection & unceasing prayers.”

Alexander Hamilton: An Important Family Archive of Letters and Manuscripts

|
New York