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MY GOOD HERVEY, The date of this will inform you where I am. Yes, James, I am at Fryeburg. I came here six weeks ago, and took charge of the Academy. My engagements are for two quarters, and the probability is I shall then leave here. It is quite an object with me to put myself into some urbanic place, the time I am out of study. Nothing here is unpleasant ;
there is a pretty little society. The people treat me with kindness, and I have the fortune to find myself in a very good family. I see little female company, but that is an item with which I can conveniently enough dispense. Your old acquaintance, Mrs. Dana, lives next door, I am frequently there ; they live in a neat, handsome, sociable style. Nabby is somewhat expected here soon ; Mr. and Mrs. Dana are now gone to Hanover, and will wish her to return with them. O, Bingham ! But a schoolmaster must not sigh. Having said so much about myself, I will next talk of you. You are not noted, that I know of, for paying your devoirs to that uncertain gossip caUed Fame ; yet the creature, through some unaccountable fancy, seems disposed to treat you with caresses. Mr. Hutchins from Concord was here lately, and told me the proprietors of their public school had determined to write you a pressing invitation to accept the instruction of it. I gave him no encouragement, for I thought you in better business, but told him you were the man, if they could obtain you. If you should go, you will find every attention. H. is attempting to instruct there in music, and has rendered himself absolutely ridiculous. His Jacobinism has increased his infamy, for having written a frothy, silly, senseless, ungrammatical, misspelt letter to some of his democratical friends, it, perchance, got into the columns of the Courier, and was fine sport for our brother-students who live in that quarter.
Billings is keeping school at Sanbornton; he boards with Lovejoy. I was there on my way hither, and pressed Phoebe's hand, and inquired if she thought Mr. Billings a clever man ; she said he was not clever like Mr. Bingham. I told her there were different ways of being clever; she smiled significantly, and was silent.
I have heard nothing from Hanover, since Zeke left it. He had just arrived at Salisbury when I set out for Fryeburg. * * * * wrote me that she was going to Connecticut. I wish her every blessing, but cannot tell what may arise hereafter. I don't know but my happiness must be sacrificed to hers. She said you had a letter for me, and intimated strongly that she wished me to see it. You may, if you please, put it into the mail, and direct to me at Fryeburg.
Solon, I fear, is shut out of business. The judiciary bill is knocked on the head. Smith will probably return to the bar. " This is a land of Liberty, and the Constitution." Huzza !
Do write me the very next mail, and add one more to that long chain of obligations, which bind to your bosom your everlasting friend,
- Daniel Webster
- Private Correspondence of Daniel Webster, Edited by Fletcher Webster, Volume I, 1857