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Wolcott, Oliver (1760-1833) to Eli Whitney

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC04979 Author/Creator: Wolcott, Oliver (1760-1833) Place Written: New York, New York Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 11 March 1815 Pagination: 2 p. + docket 25.1 x 20.2 cm

Summary of Content: Discussing trouble with his son and noting that: "Most of the young men in our cities are deplorable."

Full Transcript: New York March 11th, 1815
Dear Sir.
My brother brought me your letter of Feby 28th. I sincerely thank you for the interest and trouble you have had with my son & ...regret that his conduct has been so unacceptionable [sic]. The prospects of many, I might perhaps say, most of the young men in our cities are deplorable. Opinions and manners are generally prevalent among them of good families, which must infallibly conduct most of them to Poverty & Ruin. My son has much vivacity, but he has a good disposition, his errors proceed from examples, which are before him: - they are unfortunately the vices of the times in which we live.
I am engaged in no business at present & shall keep O. at home under my own Eye; till I can deliberately settle some plan for his education.
I do not think that our [commercial] prospects are sufficiently inviting to induce me to resume business. When then roads are [settled], I will come to Conn. when probably I shall conclude to superintend my farms & [2] loan or sell my property in this City. I am not rich, but have more than I shall want, for my own use, and probably my attention to preserve what I have, will be as advantageous to my Children, as any attempts to acquire more.
My son, has conducted well since his return, I shall be inflexible in my [control] over his conduct.
I remain in him
Your grateful &
Obliged friend
Oliv. Wolcott

Eli Whitney Esq
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People: Wolcott, Oliver, 1760-1833

Historical Era: National Expansion and Reform, 1815-1860

Subjects: Children and FamilyMorality and Ethics

Sub Era: The Age of Jefferson & Madison

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