Henry Livingston, Jr.
Henry Livingston's Letters

New York Public Library
Gilbert Livingston Collection

Utica Sep 1825.

My dear & respected Grand Father,

Your affectionate, & excellent letter lies before me. I thank you kindly for this attention, & confess I am not deserving of it. I have been very remiss of late years in writing to you my dear G. Father, but I trust for the future I shall perform my duty better, in the respect to your satisfaction & my own. I wrote to you when I heard of my dear Father's alarming illness & should have written again but numerous domestic duties pressed upon me. I have had but one servant and some of the time been without any for five weeks. I find it almost impossible to write and collect my thoughts, sufficiently to compose a letter you must therefore make every allowance for the imperfections of this letter.

In answer to your kind inquiries respecting the health of our family I have the happiness to say that we are all well, at present. Our eldest son, Arthur Breese Lansing is pursuing the study of the Latin & English language & makes tolerable proficiency. He is smart to learn, that is he commits very easily to memory but he has very little application. He is neither industrious in study or work, but that I will not prejudice you against him, so that I will not at present enumerate all his faults.

Henry Livingston, who was so called after my beloved & lamented Uncle [Henry Welles Livingston, 1778-1813], resembles him I think in his looks, he has an affectionate disposition and more generosity & nobleness of heart then Arthur but he does not learn so well. He may however make the most useful man. He will be eight years of age next January.

Our youngest we have named after our friend & benefactor Henry Seymour [father of Governor Horatio Seymour]. We call him Seymour. He will be two years old next February. He has fine dark eyes & is a very intelligent child, at least we think so.

As to my sisters & brothers, I have the pleasure to inform you that we expect dear Catherine [Walker Breese Griswold] & Mary [Davenport Breese, 17 years old, unmarried] the last of this month, they will not return again to the South. Mr Griswold expects to commence business in NY this fall. Catherine & her little ones [Sarah Elizabeth Griswold, Cornelia Platt Griswold, and Edward Kirby Griswold] I expect will pass the winter with me. Mary will go to NY. She will make her home with our sister Susan [Breese Stout].

It is doubtful whether Elizabeth remains at the Harts or not. [Any chance of a connection to Lydia Hubbard Moore, married to Rev. William Henry Hart in 1815, and living in Virginia?] I believe they do not expect to stay a great while, but what their prospects are I do not know.

My youngest brother Arthur is in a Hardware store. I hope he will do well. He resembles my lamented parent very much. He is the tallest, finest looking of the boys.

My dear G I am in hopes that I shall be able to make you a short visit this fall. I anticipate a jaunt to NY in October, and whether on my way down or on my way home, shall stop for two or three days at your home.

I am glad to find that Mama [1823 Troy Sentinel] continues to enjoy health. Give my best love to her, to Aunts Jane, Helen, Eliza & Susan and to my Uncles Charles, Sidney & Edwin. Charles gave us a look as he passed through town, but [x] for Aunt [Susan Livingston] Duyckinck & Aunt Caty [Caty Tappan Livingston].

If my dear Bleecker knew of my writing he would desire to be affectionately remembered to yourself and household. He is very busy preparing to go to NY dear Grandparent, may your last days be your best days. The neatness and elegance of your letter my dear Grandsire ought to make me perfectly ashamed of this miserable scrawl, but I have so little leisure to write that I must send this and subject myself to the criticism of yourself & household, but I beseech you be lenient to the faults of your truly affectionate Grand daughter.

Sarah Lansing


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