Alexander Hamilton Papers

From Alexander Hamilton to Elizabeth Hamilton, 16 October [1802]

To Elizabeth Hamilton1

Peeks Kill2 [New York] October 16 [1802]

I have just arrived here and shall stay till tomorrow.

It has always appeared to me that the ground on which our Orchard stands is much too moist. To cure this a ditch round it would be useful, perhaps with a sunken fence as a guard. But this last may be considered at a future time.

If you can obtain one or two more labourers, it may be adviseable to cut a ditch round the Orchard—three feet deep by three feet wide at the bottom. The clay that comes out of the ditch will be useful to give firmness to our roads and may be used for this purpose.

Yet you will consider this merely as a suggestion & do as you shall think best after you shall have ascertained whether you can procure any better materials for the purpose. But remember that mere sand & stones will not answer.3

Very Affectionately My beloved   Yrs.


Mrs. H

ALS, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress.

1For background to this letter, see the introductory note to Philip Schuyler to H, July 17, 1800.

2H was on his way to Albany to attend the October term of the New York Supreme Court which met from October 19 to October 30, 1802.

3H addressed this letter to his wife at “No. 58 Partition Street” where the Hamilton family lived in 1802. Partition Street is the present-day Fulton Street in New York City.

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