Philander Chase



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Chase informs his brother of the success of the Knox County plan after the recent convention. He is very pleased but worries about obtaining proper funds as one of his potential donors has written to say he will no longer be able to help, and Chase wonders whether he should return to England to raise funds.




Knox County, Dr. White, Bishop Hobart, Lord Kenyon, Bishop of Barbados, G.W. Marriott, Mr. Wells, Dudley Chase Jr., Olivia Chase, Gambier


Worthington 15. June


Dear Brother:

I have great pleasure in informing you of the result of our Convention relative to the plan which, you are aware, has occupied my mind so much of late. Such was the evidence of its great utility that there was an unanimous vote on all questions which related to the establishment of the Seminary and College in Knox County. And I assure you I feel such gratitude for this signal favour vouchsafed me by Gods own ruling Spirit that I find it difficult to speak as I feel on the subject. What crowned the merciful dispensation of a kind Providence towards our Seminary was the reception of a letter from the venerable Bishop of Pennsylvania Dr White the Father of the House of Bishops. You know that thro’ all my struggles Bp. H and his friends have never ceased to represent this aged prelate as opposed to the measures of establishing a Seminary & College in the west. What, then, can my pleasing astonishment at receiving a letter from him assuring me of his hearty good will and of his prayers for my success. I have ventured to quote his very words in the body of my address to the Convention that the stain contained in this slanderous report might be wiped from his memory.

What will the Mssrs [?] say to this? I have already transmitted this pleasing fact to our friends in England together with the “location” of our Seminary: they will rejoice most heartily.

Lord Kenyon, in his letter to me of a later date than the time in which I [?] you, says. “We have seen with sentiments of great disapprobation Bp: Hobart attack on our English Church. May not the Arch Bishop now say? “Were it an open Enemy I could burn it; but it is even thou, than my familiar friend.” What an outcry would some people, (I won’t name them) have made had Bp: Chase published such a sermon! Even Colridge the Bp: of Barbadoes told our friend G.W. Marriott that he regretted it was ever published.”

Marriott says there are mistakes in the statements of facts: and that “The Bp’s sermon will be refuted and not without some castigation of the Bishop.”

But Dr Brother you will expect that I saw something more about our Knox County Scheme now so happily confirmed. We shall sell the north Section and keep the south. When we examined them both on the [famous] 2 & 3 of June many were of opinion that they were of equal value. Some however preferring the south & some the North section. The good and judicious Mr Wells of Steubenville was there and often exclaimed that the south section was worth with the Seminary there on 10 dollars per acre. In this all good judges agree.

I have ten thousand things to tell you but must defer them till I see you in person which I hope will be in the month October.

In the mean time I beg you to remember me in your prayers. I have undertaken this great business almost entirely on my own responsibility; and as it is I must see [it] thro’ or sink. I humbly trust that God is on my side as he hath evidently been from the beginning. And if be for me why should I despond?

My dear wife tho’ worn down with hard work is well and the children keep hearty. Little Dudley grows stoutly and I think never was a whole day together sick.

Gen’l [McSuthern]’s disappointment has cast a somber hue over my hopes. A letter just rec’d from him assures me that it was his intention to help me pay for the Knox County lands if he had succeeded. I believe him. Where I shall look among my own Countrymen I know not. Must I go again to Old England to find generous hearts? Do give our best, best love to “dear Sister Olivia” once more.

It is vacation time with us now. I mean with the Scholars but with me there is no rest day nor night. Work by day & dreams by night. Next monday I set off for Gambier & Kenyon College Alias the Knox County lands. Most heartily do I thank you for your presence. May God bless you my Brother!! Philander Chase

Letter to Dudley Chase



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