Philander Chase



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Chase expresses his appreciation for Hewitt's work in the American Temperance Society and assures him of his own support for and adherence to the cause.




American Temperance Society, alcohol, Knox County, Gambier, Dudley Chase


To the Rev. Nath’l Hewitt

Gen’l. Agent to the American Temperance Society

A.D. 1828

Washington City 3 May

Rev & Dear Sir

When I saw you in Boston now about a year ago, it was my intention to do something by way of showing my concurrence with the views of your most benevolent Society. But my manifold cares in another course of duty prevented. One thing, however, has not been neglected, viz. a very stead adherence to the principles of your Society in the government of those, over whom Divine Providence has given me, however unworthy, for a longer or shorter time, a reasonable control. Not only from among the Students, but about fifty working hands on the College Buildings have we been enabled to banish the use (even what is so artfully and erroneously termed the “moderate use”) of all ardent spirits.

At first this was considered, in our labouring department, as impracticable. But by manifesting pure motives and assigning just and good reasons; by steady perseverance followed by uninterrupted good health in all who submitted to the regime, there was a thorough conviction of the propriety & great utility of the measure.

It is no longer considered true that ardent spirits are necessary or even salutary in sustaining the strength of the Labouring men. On the contrary, there is a conviction – a strong and lasting conviction because founded on experience amongst us that the use of strong liquor proportionably debilitates the human constitution. So that I may safely say, that if your American Temperance Society go on with a steady hand experience will be all on their side.

Your attempt at stemming the overbearing tide of intemperance in our country, may at frist view seem fruitless – (and what other great undertaking has not met with like discouragement at first?); but I am convinced that by firmness, by prudence, and by perseverance it will succeed to a degree worthy of all sacrifices.

What encourages me most in the contemplation of this great work is a firm conviction in my own mind that it is agreeable to the divine Will; and therefore it becomes our duty to undertake it. No discouragement or impediments should stop us – not the dark cloud nor the raging wind – nro the foaming sea should stop us when God saith “go forward.” Like Israel of old, we should simply obey: – then the way will be made plain before us: and in the place of defeat we shall find victory. Even the dark cloud will become a light to our path: and the raging wind and the stormy sea will serve but to destroy our enemies.

Will you have the goodness to send a copy of the Ann’l Report of the A. Temperance Soc’ty directed to me P.M. Gambier Knox Co. Ohio – and another to the Hon’l Dudley Chase Randolph Vert.

Accept Rev & Dr Sir the assurance of my high esteem & believe me your faithful Fr’d & Servt

P. Chase

Letter to Rev. Nathaniel Hewitt



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