To Angelica Hamilton1
[Philadelphia, November,2 1793]
I was very glad to learn, my dear daughter, that you were going to begin the study of the French language. We hope you will in every respect behave in such a manner as will secure to you the good-will and regard of all those with whom you are. If you happen to displease any of them, be always ready to make a frank apology. But the best way is to act with so much politeness, good manners, and circumspection, as never to have occasion to make any apology. Your mother joins in best love to you. Adieu, my very dear daughter.
James A. Hamilton, Reminiscences of James A. Hamilton; or, Men and Events, at Home and Abroad During Three Quarters of a Century (New York, 1869), 4.
1. Angelica Hamilton was H’s eldest daughter.
2. Although this letter is dated September 21, 1793, in Hamilton’s Reminiscences, it seems unlikely that it was written at a time when H and his wife were on their way to Albany to convalesce after an attack of yellow fever. See George Washington to H, September 6, 1793, note 1; H to Abraham Yates, Jr., September 26, 1793. When the Hamiltons became ill in early September, the Hamilton children had been sent for safety to the home of their grandfather Philip Schuyler in Albany. This letter has been dated November, 1793, on the basis of a letter from Schuyler to H of November 17, 1793, recommending that Hamilton’s children remain in Albany.