Henry Livingston, Jr.
Henry Livingston's Poetry


Waiting at the Tavern a few minutes for Cortlandt I scribbled the following lines You see wife how I reckon on your partiallity!

On my little Catherine sleeping

Sweet Innocent lye still & sleep,
While chearfull seraphs vigils keep,
To ward off ev'ry shaft of death
That may be wing'd to seize thy breath.
Dear Infant how serene you lay,
Nor heed the bustle of the day!
Thy little bosom knows no care,
For guilt neer lay & wrankled there;
In thee all troubles die & cease,
And all is quiet all is peace.
How much unlike thy Father's life
Amid the Din of Arms & strife!
The tumult and the noise of war
Forever thundring in his ear.
Thy mother too has shed her tears
Has heav'd her sigh & known her fears.
Her lips hath not forgot to press
The bitter cup of keen distress.
And Thou sweet Bode will soon perceive [Bade??]
That to be mortal is to greive;
That as the spark will upward fly,
So man still lives to mourn & dye.

Henry's commission as Major in the 3rd New York regiment made him leave behind his wife and first baby, only a week after her birth. Writing to his wife Sarah, Henry included this poem for his daughter. After his death, the letter must have been inherited by Henry's grandson, and Catherine's son, Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice and U.S. Senator Sidney Breese.

Illinois Archives, Breese Papers


Writing,     Documents,     Letters,     Poetry,     Prose

Illustrated 1823 Night Before Christmas

All Henry Livingston's Poetry,     All Clement Moore's Poetry     Historical Articles About Authorship

Many Ways to Read Henry Livingston's Poetry

Arguments,   Smoking Gun?,   Reindeer Names,   First Publication,   Early Variants  
Timeline Summary,   Witness Letters,   Quest to Prove Authorship,   Scholars,   Fiction  

   Book,   Slideshow,   Xmas,   Writing,   The Man,   Work,   Illos,   Music,   Genealogy,   Bios,   History,   Games  

Henry's Home

Mary's Home

IME logo Copyright © 2003, InterMedia Enterprises