|John Chambers, New York to Robert Simms, Belfast.
|Irish Emigration Database
|New York, USA
|T 1815/5: Copied by Permission of The Presbyterian Historical Society, Church House, Fisherwick Place, Belfast.
|The Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
|Document added by JM 01:10:1993
|Mr Robt [Robert?] Simms
New York 9th May 1806
Mr Dear Simms
I have received your very kind & most acceptable letter of the
21st Nov. which was more than five months on its passage. I trust you
will believe that it recalled the recollection of those many hours of
rational & innocent pleasures which I spent in your city in Fort George,
when we both found the wisdom and true philosophy of laughing
at the efforts of our enemies to subjugate (at least) our minds, & experienced
a tranquility which, probably, many of them wanted.
Since my former Letter to you I have made a pretty wide tour amongst
the principal Cities on this Continent, - Philada. [Philadelphia?], Baltimore,
Washington, Alexana. [Alexandra?] &c. - have spent many pleasant hours with
your warm friend Dr. White - with Henry Jackson, Robt. [Robert?] Moore &c
&c, amongst all of whom you were frequently spoken of in terms of kindness &
respect, and with many united wishes to see you amongst us. Upon this subject
your reasons are not without their value; tho' they are not equally founded, or
built upon correct report; but I do not think it right to press inducements
which all men may see in the same points of view, or lead you to a procedure
which might be followed by disappointment, or regret. - I have gratified a
Curiosity of longstanding in seeing the great Character who
presides over the [destinies?] of this
happy Country - The principal head of Departments - Many of the leading
Members of Congress - and attended many of the sittings of both houses - & on
the whole have spent a very pleasant & instructive winter to the southward -
from whence I was obliged to hurry back here on the news of my eldest son
being Shipwrecked off the east end of Lough Island in a snow storm; but he
fortunately escaped with life, after experiencing great dangers & hardships! -
Our share of the cargo was chiefly lost: in this, however, as in many other
of the the afflictions & evils of life, providence send consolation, - the
life of my son has been kindly saved - & the property was principally insured.
This accident has deranged us for some time, & some months must elapse
before we shall be enabled to embark in business, from the want of Goods.
During this interval I propose going with my Son to Philadela [Philadelphia?]
to afford him a personal opportunity of judging which of the two principal towns
appear best calculated for our views. We lodge & board in the house of our
mutual worthy friend Cumming, who lives at No. 3 Upper Chambers Street where he
follows his profession, as a Physician, Apothecary &c. - I see daily our common
friends, Wm [William?] Bailie - Caldwell Parks, &c. with our old chums Emmet &c.
W. Hiven : - Emmet is doing as well as his most sanguine friend could wish,
& will, I trust, in due time, be at the head of the Bar here. Fortune has
been uncommonly propitious to him in the death of Genl [General?] Hamilton,
and the unpopularity of Burr, who were the great luminaries of the American Law
& has given him [full play?] and employment - and in some other circumstances
his very arrival was critical.
I learn from France that Arthur O'Connor is married to a Daughter of
the celebrated Condorcet. Of that country you know more than me at present.
Of its unfortunate fate - of its Chief - of his all grasping & domineering
spirit - of the State & the fate of Liberty in Europe - we cannot differ much
in opinion. What will be the
effect upon your Empire and of the interests united to it,
by the death of Pitt & the accession of Fox, I have yet
to learn, but every town must now teem with important
events. Are Sampson, Lowry, &c. returned, &
what is the domestic state of things?
The News Papers here take no interest in the affairs of our little
country & insert (rarely) anything respecting it - could you send a friend
here a little packet occasionally of Belfast Papers, address it to the care
of G & P Havens, 198 Front Street, N. [New?] York.
I am happy to find that my old friend Tenant is at length become a
[Petnicio?] - fame has given his wife, as much [credit?] for [goodness?] as
beauty - may he long find in her the sources of every happenings! - remember me
to him, and say, when he has nothing better to do, that there is one friend
here, who will be truly glad in his writing a Letter to him - Present my best
respects to your family & believe me, with best wishes for your happiness.
Dr [dear?] Simms, Yours sincy [sincerely?]
J [John?] Chambers