Philander Chase



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Philander Chase writes his sister-in-law Olivea from Norwich, Connecticut, where she was born. He tells her of his itinerary, planning to go to New London for a week prior to returning to New York for the trial of Bishop Onderdonk.




Philander Chase, Olivia Chase, Mary Chase, New York, Connecticut, New London, Norwich, Bishop Onderdonk, B.T. Onderdonk, steamboat, Long Island, Long Island Sound, travel, trial, court, winter


Norwich Connecticut

25 of Nov’r 1844

To Mrs Olivea Chase

Dear Sister:

I am now in the neighbourhood of Preston, I think your birthplace. Your mothers anecdotes about Parson Tyler of Norwich and Mr Hart of Preston come fresh to my mind as if spoken yesterday-- I seem to live overgain the days which she once lived in Preston. How I wish she were now alive and with me as I look over the ‘River and behold that lovely Village.’

But this can not be: So I recur to the living and ask you if nothing remains on your mind to make you sympathetic with me now I am here in Norwich? If you have quite forgotten the scenes of your childhood; then let me tell you all about my coming here and what I have done since here; and ask you to take a part in my labours and pray for me that “my strength may be equal to my day.”

I left Mary last thursday morning at 1/2 past six in New York No 471 Broadway with good Mr & Mrs Gibson our best, kindest, friends. My object was to go to New London by the railroad across Long Island & by the S. Boat-- But when we arrived at N. London Wharf-- the weather was boisterous; and the Steam Boat could not be made to stop in one place long enough for an old man to walk a plank and get in safly[sic] to the shore. So I was obliged to go forward and come to this place to find friends. And here indeed I have found them so plenty and so sincere as to invite me to stay and preach and speak about my dear Jubilee. There is little doubt I shall obtain one scholarship in Norwich: and I hope to do the same in New London whither I think of going day after tomorrow, and where I hope to spend next sunday. On monday ie a week form today I shall return to New York. One sunday spent in that City will bring me to the week in which the trial of the Bp of New York take place; for which ‘solemn event may I be prepared with a double portion of Heavenly Aid.’

I want to hear how my dear Brother is. Will you have the goodness to write me a letter addressing it to the care of James F. DePeyster Eqr. 57 South Street adding these words to the end of my name (”P. Master Robins Nest Ill. now at.”)

Pray say something about my other brother & my two dears Sisters Mrs Cotton & Mrs Denison

You may think me quite well when you notice how I go about and preach: but it is otherwise. Since the cold weather has set in; my catarrhal complaint has increased: so that I cough in the night season, and in the day time my head aches.

The Streams will be all closed before I am permitted to set off for the Far West-- so that I believe I shall not attempt it. The consequence will be one of two things either to go the southern States and spend the winter or try another voyage to England. In either event I entreat your prayers.

When you go to Bethel & Royalton don’t forget to talk about your absent Brother.

Speak kindly to my beloved grand Children: whom I can not reasonably expect to see again in this world. Assure them of my prayers and hearty blessing.

I have not heard from my family from whom I parted last May, for a long time. Our dear Samuel was on the Mississippi River when he last wrote with ten boys & dear Lucia all in good health. Since that time I have sent ten more to Jubilee. God grant that all arrive in safety-- Give my best love to Brother Dudley.

Ever faithfully your loving Brother

Philander Chase

Letter to Olivea Chase



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