THE ATTIC

1837 LETTER
Dr. Francis Burdette Parmele 1815-1883
Henry, Joel, Nehemiah, Nathaniel, Nathaniel, John, John

This letter was written by Frederick Cole in Albany, N.Y., to Frank who was in Utica, Ohio. Frederick is probably a relative of Frank's sister, Caroline, who married Philo Cole.

The letter is one of those found in a box at a garage sale.

Argus Office, Albany, March 23, 1837

Dear Friend,

I was waiting to get a letter from you and had about come to the conclusion to wait no longer when your brief but still welcome letter was rec'd.

I know not whether Philo [Cole] has written to you, but your apprehensions were groundless. Caroline [(Parmele) Cole] is quite well and the boy grows "after the manner of" boys in general, being more fleshy than formerly and "after the manner of the Parmelees" in particular, being considerably longer than whilom (?).

We jog on so-so, and if anything, rather more so than so. I don't know but I have rather neglected you in the newspaper way. We may in a measure be attributed to the estimate which I place upon the article - being rather a low one, it may be if situated as you are I should think more of them. I sent you one of the "mammoth" couriers. I wonder if you got it?

I am glad to hear that you intend going into business - only don't become a walking Arithmetic, don't let your mind become a multiplication table. I had a --?-- you would be as poor as myself.

We have no business doing here now. The river is not yet open though there is a fair prospect that it will be in a few days.

The Legislature are making a great fuss about the currency. Banks etc. etc. I hope they will fix it all right -- Are you a Loco Foco*, Frank? I believe I am almost -- not a whole hog, agrarian flour-starving Loco Foco -- such as are for a general, equitable division every Saturday night -- but an Equal Rights, Anti-Bank Col. Young-ish Loco Foco. What say you, Frank? ...

- - -

[* The Loco-Focos were a radical splinter group of the Democratic Party in New York City. Its members opposed monopolies and private bankers. The name was derived from a popular brand of wooden matches used by members to continue a crucial meeting in 1835 after pro-bank opponents shut off the gas. The Loco-Focos became the Equal Rights Party which folded back into the Democratic Party with Martin Van Buren's election in 1838.]

... You see I am liable to intemptious -- I do sometimes wish that I could steal away somewhere and have an hour or two to myself & to you -- but I cannot -- & you must e'en take up with a disjointed scrawl made during this & that & the other little fragment of time in the din of democracy & dollars.

What shall I say? I don't know of any news that would be sure to interest you - unless you will promise to be interested in that which deeply interest and rejoices me -- which is the hope that two of my Sabbath school boys have repented and believed in Christ. May their lives prove it to be so! Would that I could hope as much of my dearest friend. It's true Philosophy, Frank, to be a christian -- Believe me to be "as much as ever"

Yours,

Fredr W. Cole