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Knox, Henry (1750-1806) to Benjamin Lincoln

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC02437.03892 Author/Creator: Knox, Henry (1750-1806) Place Written: New York, New York Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 13 June 1788 Pagination: 4 p. ; 31.2 x 19.7 cm.

Reports that he forwarded a letter from Lincoln to John Jacob Faesch. Discusses the Constitution, noting that no state has thus far rejected it except for Rhode Island. Writes, "Thank Heaven America has a proposition for a government which in case of a storm would shield the principle of liberty... from the rude attacks of anarchy and tyranny." Relates that eight states have adopted the Constitution, and there is reason to believe Virginia will also choose in favor of ratification. Comments on Anti-Federalists in New York and the likelihood that New York will adopt the Constitution. Notes "The real disposition of New Hampshire seems to be concealed" regarding ratification. Congratulates Lincoln on being elected Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts.

New York 13 June 1788

My dear Sir

I received your favor of the 6th instant and its enclosure by the post last evening. It will be forwarded to Mr Faesh, to morrow so that he will receive it on the same day. [struck: Mr Faesh] [inserted: He] resides at Booneton about 9 miles east of Morris Town the same place formerly occupied by Mr Samuel Ogden.
The constitution seems to be as well received, as could have been conjectured by the most sanguine. The proposition was complex in itself and subject to a thousand misrepresentations. [struck: I am] [inserted: It is] not suprized that it has had its enemies. - [struck: when it is considered that] mankind [struck: man] is [struck: extremely [differently]] [inserted: are infinitely diversified in their situation and] [strikeout] [2] [struck: are] [inserted: being] constrained by local circumstances to view the same object [struck: [these] with app] through different mediums and [inserted: with] different apparatus it is no wonder [inserted and struck: therefore] that their conceptions and opinions should be different - Happy indeed it is for [struck: this Country] [inserted: This public] and I hope for our posterity that so many states have agreed to it without any having positively rejected it excepting Rhode Island [struck: whose approbation [inserted and struck: would] must imply [a] [strikeout] of heart] The [struck: extreme villainy of the majority] conduct of the majority of that state [struck: [see] together with] the insurrections in Massachusetts and the opposition [struck: of th] to the [impost] by New York appear to have been the corrosive means to rouse the virtuous part of America [struck: from the storm be] to our attention to their situation - Thank Heaven [struck: they have] [inserted: America has] a proposition [struck: of] [inserted: for a] government which [struck: would be a polar star in case of] [inserted: in case of a storm would [struck: should] shield the] [3] the principle of liberty and its [votaries] from the rude attacks of anarchy and tyranny -
Eight states have already adopted the Constitution, and that is good reason to believe that Virginia will also receive it on the plan of Massachusetts - You may cherish the hope my dear friend that by the 4th of July you will receive the information that Virginia [struck: is] the 9th State [struck: of] that [struck: have] ratified the constitution -
Now for [struck: Virg the conduct of] Virginia [inserted: acceptance] will influence the conduct of this state it is difficult to say as the Antifederalists have a divided majority of 47 out of 66 - Their perfect policy appears to be to postpone - this will be worse than a rejection, an [4] and they [mean] it shall [inserted: have that] operated - In any event however of their conduct they will find 3/7 of the state as ready to oppose them as they seemed intended to believe the minorities of the other states will be to support them -
The [inserted: real] disposition of New Hampshire seems to be concealed - we cannot learn any thing decisive respecting her intentions - Should she reject the constitution she will [struck: do extremely worse than committing suicide] be blind indeed -
permit me my dear sir to congratulate you on the tribute of affection manifested by your letter. Citizens on the late election of you to be Lieut Governor [struck: The satisfaction Dearest] [struck: I am] Mrs Knox [struck: joins] presents her love to you. I hope to be in Boston in About [2] weeks
I am your affectionate
Genl Lincoln -

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