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New York [ 1798–1804 ]. “A Series of misfortunes which have pursued me from infancy … make me apply to you for a Small Sum to relieve me from present embarrassment. The portrait that accompanies this letter is not offered to you in barter for the sum required. No Sir, it is my request that you would honor it with some corner in your house.… It is Sir the portrait of the Countess of Serang,...
Introductory Note The document printed below contains the first mention in this volume of the events relating to the duel between Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr. Each aspect of the encounter, undoubtedly the most famous duel in American history, intrigued contemporaries of every political persuasion and has fascinated generations of historians. Both before and after Hamilton’s death,...
Bergen County Ss: The Jurors for the Body of the County of Bergen in behalf of the State of New Jersey upon their oath present that Aaron Burr late of the Township of Bergen in the County of Bergen esquire not having the fear of God before his eyes but being moved and seduced by the instigation of the Devil on the eleventh day of July in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and four...
To comply with your request is a painful task; but I will repress my feelings while I endeavour to furnish you with an enumeration of such particulars relative to the melancholy end of our beloved friend Hamilton, as dwell most forcibly on my recollection. When called to him, upon his receiving the fatal wound, I found him half sitting on the ground, supported in the arms of Mr. Pendleton. His...
City and County of New York ss: The Jurors of the People of the State of New York in and for the Body of the city and County of New York upon their oath present That Aaron Burr late of the Eighth Ward of the City of New York in the County of New York Esquire on the Eleventh day of July in the year of Our Lord one thousand eight hundred and four at the Ward City and County aforesaid with force...
City & County of Newyork } ss An Inquisition Indented taken for the People of the State of Newyork At the third Ward of the City of Newyork in the County of Newyork, the thirteenth day of July in the year of Our Lord One thousand Eight hundred and four, and Continued by adjournment until the Second day of August in the year Aforesaid, before me John Burger Coroner for the Said City and County...
The second of G H having considered it proper to subjoin an explanatory note to the statement mutually furnished, it becomes proper for the gentleman who attended Col Burr to state also his impressions with respect to those points on which their exists a variance of opinion. In doing this he pointedly disclaims any idea disrespectful to the memory of G H, or an intention to ascribe any conduct...
Real Estate My share of Townships No. 9. 10. 15. 17 and 21 in Scribas Patent in connection with J B Church and John Lawrance viz ¹⁄₆ of the first purchase the whole being 31528 acres & ¼ of an acre & one third of the residuary purchase upon the suit in chancery being together nearly 20000 acres which now stand me in about } 33000 My ¼ of purchase in Nobleborough together with J Laurance Robert...
There were inclosed under this cover and delivered to me after the death of General Hamilton 1. His will 2. Deed of trust to John B Church, Jno Laurence, & Genl Clarkson 3. State of his Property & Debts with remarks 4 Remarks explanatory of his conduct motives & views in his expected interview 5 Note to myself 6. Letter to Mrs. Hamilton 7. Letter to John B Church inclosing an Assignment of...
The statement containing the facts that led to the interview between General Hamilton and Col. Burr, published in the Evening Post on Monday, studiously avoided mentioning any particulars of what past at the place of meeting. This was dictated by suitable considerations at the time, and with the intention, that whatever it might be deemed proper to lay before the public, should be made the...
Col: Burr arrived first on the ground as had been previously agreed. When Genl Hamilton arrived the parties exchanged salutations and the Seconds proceeded to make their arrangments. They measured the distance, ten full paces, and cast lots for the choice of positions as also to determine by whom the word should be given, both of which fell to the Second of Genl Hamilton. They then proceeded...
I went to the City yesterday for the express purpose of conferring with [you] on the subject of the contemplated publication. One of my children was extremely unwell when I left home and a short time after my arrival in town, a Servant was sent to inform me that she was in extreme danger. To this unfortunate situation of my family I beg you to ascribe my apparent inattention to the appointment...
It will not be possible for me to give you another opportunity of seeing the Statement, before it is printed. Arrangements were made to have it appear this day, reserving a few lines of addition for your examination until after the hour you mentioned; as to which too we had before conversed. I have added in explicit terms the reason assigned by you for not having received the last paper I...
Having thought it expedient on consideration to make a small addition to the statement which I had the honor of communicating to you on Friday last, I wished to have given you an opportunity of seeing it previous to its publication; and for that purpose I called at your house in town this evening supposing you had been prevented from calling upon me at five oClock this afternoon according to...
15The Funeral, [14 July 1804] (Hamilton Papers)
On Saturday last the remains of Alexander Hamilton were committed to the grave with every possible testimony of respect and sorrow. That distant readers may form some idea of what passed on this mournful occasion, we shall here present them with a regular and correct account of the whole scene. The Military, under the command of Lieutenant Col. Morton, were drawn up in front of Mr. Church’s...
The Committee Appointed by the Corporation to Conduct the Funeral of the Late General Hamilton Dr 1804 To Fenwick Lyell July 13 To a Mahogany Coffin £10..0..0 $25 D , Historical Documents Collection, on deposit at Queens College, City University of New York. On July 13, 1804, the Common Council of the City of New York “Resolved unanimously that the Common Council of the City of New York...
Mr Burr’s respectful Compliments. He requests Dr. Hosack to inform him of the present state of Genl. H. and of the hopes which are entertained of his recovery. Mr. Burr begs to know at what hours of the [day] the Dr. may most probably be found at home, that he may repeat his inquiries. He would take it very kind if the Dr. would take the trouble of calling on him as he returns from Mr....
J’ai hier recu Votre Lettre du 6. mai timbree du 10 , La quelle m’accuse reception de la Mienne du 2. ainssy que de L’Extrait de La Conssultation, des deux avocats de Bordeaux, Sur mon Afaire Contre Bouchereau, Et dépuis ai remis L’original avec deux autres Pieces importantes à Mr. harison, Le quel ma mandé avoir obtenue Le renvois de la Cause à la Court qui doit le tenir en Octobre, Ce qui me...
The public mind being extremely agitated by the melancholy fate of that great man, Alexander Hamilton , I have thought it would be grateful to my fellow-citizens, would provide against misrepresentation, and, perhaps, be conducive to the advancement of the cause of religion, were I to give a narrative of some facts which have fallen under my own observation, during the time which elapsed...
If your attention to your friend will not be interrupted by it, I will be greatly obliged to you, to inform me of the situation of General Hamilton. I sincerely hope that his wound is not, as has been stated to me, pronounced mortal. The melancholy termination of this days contest renders it expedient I think, that we should have an interview as soon as your situation & feeling will justify...
[ New York, June 28–July 10, 1804. Nathaniel Pendleton described the eighth item on a list of ten, which were given to him after Hamilton’s death, as a “Letter to Mrs. Mitchell inclosing 400 dollars as was mentioned on the outside. Sealed.” Letter not found. ] Ann Mitchell, the daughter of James and Ann Lytton, was H’s cousin. Her mother was the sister of H’s mother, Rachel Lavien. In 1759,...
[ New York, June 28–July 10, 1804. Nathaniel Pendleton described the ninth item on a list of ten, which were given to him after Hamilton’s death, as a “Letter to Geo: Mitchell inclosing a lottery ticket, as mentioned on the outside. Sealed.” Letter not found. ] Mitchell, the husband of Ann Mitchell, H’s cousin, had died in the spring of 1797. See “List of Papers Given to Nathaniel Pendleton,”...
On my expected interview with Col Burr, I think it proper to make some remarks explanatory of my conduct, motives and views. I am certainly desirous of avoiding this interview, for the most cogent reasons. 1 My religious and moral principles are strongly opposed to the practice of Duelling, and it would even give me pain to be obliged to shed the blood of a fellow creature in a private combat...
[ New York, June 28–July 10, 1804. Nathaniel Pendleton described the seventh item on a list of ten, which were given to him after Hamilton’s death, as a “Letter to John B Church inclosing an assignment of some debts.” Letter not found. ] See “List of Papers Given to Nathaniel Pendleton,” July 19, 1804 . See “Assignment of Debts and Grant of Power of Attorney to John B. Church,” July 9, 1804 .
These sums having been received since my engagement & no services rendered I consider them as forming part of my debts. Franklin & Robinson 50 James Amory 20 D Ludlow & Co 50 Wilmerding 30 Murdock Masterson & Co 20 Steven Ray & David Dill 25 Scott & Tremaine 20 ADS , New-York Historical Society, New York City. This document is the tenth and final item on the
Mrs. Mitchel is the person in the world to whom as a friend I am under the greatest Obligations. I have ⟨not⟩ hitherto done my ⟨duty⟩ to her. But ⟨resolved⟩ to repair my omission as much as ⟨possible,⟩ I have encouraged her to come to ⟨this Country⟩ and intend, if it shall be ⟨in my po⟩wer to render the Evening of her days ⟨c⟩omfortable. But if it shall please God to put this out of my power...
1. The parties will leave town tomorrow morning about five o Clock, and meet at the place agreed on. The party arriving first shall wait for the other. 2. The weapons shall be pistols not exceeding eleven inches in the barrel. The distance ten paces. 3. The Choice of positions to be determined by lot. 4. The parties having taken their positions one of the seconds to be determined by lot (after...
I have received two letters from you since we last saw each other—that of the latest date being the 24 of May. I have had in hand for some time a long letter to you, explaining my view of the course and tendency of our Politics, and my intentions as to my own future conduct. But my plan embraced so large a range that owing to much avocation, some indifferent health, and a growing distaste for...
I should with regret pass over another Day. It is left however to your discretion. If the Fort is agreed on, it will [be] impossible to make an early business without fatigue. What you shall do will be satisfactory to me—except an early Morning hour. I have no predilection for time. From 7 to 12 is the least pleasant—but anything so we but get on. If you go out, leave a line for me with your...
[ New York, July 9, 1804. Nathaniel Pendleton described the seventh item on a list of ten, which were given to him after Hamilton’s death, as a “Letter to John B. Church inclosing an assignment of some debts.” Letter not found. ] See “List of Papers Given to Nathaniel Pendleton,” July 19, 1804 . See “Assignment of Debts and Grant of Power of Attorney to John B. Church,” July 9, 1804 .
Know all Men by these Presents, That I Alexander Hamilton of the City of New York Counsellor at law, in consideration of one Dollar to me in hand paid by John B Church Esquire, (the receipt whereof is hereby acknowleged) have bargained sold assigned and conveyed and hereby do bargain sell assign & convey to the said John B Church all and singular the debts due owing and payable to me: which...
A Copy of a list of Debts assigned to John B Church Esquire per Deed Dated 9th. July 1804 paid James & William Sterling 75 pd Isaac Clason 160 no William Bell—Robinson & Hartshorne 50 pd Mess. Jenkins (Riggs) 50 pd Pierre Van Cortland } 40 late L. Governor pd P. Jay Monroe paid
In the Name of God Amen! I Alexander Hamilton of the City of New York Counsellor at Law do make this my last Will and Testament as follows. First I appoint John B Church Nicholas Fish and Nathaniel Pendleton of the City aforesaid Esquires to be Executors and Trustees of this my Will and I devise to them their heirs and Assigns, as joint Tenants and not as Tenants in common, All my Estate real...
1. The parties to leave the City at 5 O Clock A. M Wednesday morning 11th Instant. 2. The distance between the parties to be 10 yards & the Pistols not to exceed 11 Inches in the barrel. The Seconds to determine by lot the choice of Positions and the Giving of the word. 3. The parties being placed at their Stations—The Second who gives the words shall ask them whether they are ready. Being...
This Indenture made the Sixth day of July in the Year of our Lord one thousand Eight hundred and four Between Alexander Hamilton of the City of New York Counsellor at Law of the one part and John B. Church John Laurance and Matthew Clarkson of the City of New York Esquires of the other part Witnessth That the Said Alexander Hamilton for and in consideration of one Dollar to him in hand paid by...
During Yesterdays Fete, having had occasion to discharge ⟨– –⟩ recently repaired; I must ⟨–⟩ the Barrel now ⟨– – –⟩ in the Opposite Direction. I will expect you ⟨– – –⟩ immedy upon your Return to the City. your Servt Transcript furnished by Mr. Lincoln Diamant, Tarrytown, New York. Schuss was a New York City gunsmith. See “Motion Made at a Meeting of the Society of the Cincinnati,” July 4,...
This letter, my very dear Eliza, will not be delivered to you, unless I shall first have terminated my earthly career; to begin, as I humbly hope from redeeming grace and divine mercy, a happy immortality. If it had been possible for me to have avoided the interview, my love for you and my precious children would have been alone a decisive motive. But it was not possible, without sacrifices...
On the 4th of July, on motion of Hamilton, the Committee were directed, in case of a favorable report upon claims for admission as a member of right (except where there may have been a previous admission in another State Society), to report specifically the ground upon which they conceive the original right of the applicant to stand, and the reason which may have prevented an earlier...
I thank you My Dear Sir for your friendly offices in this last critical scene, if such it shall be. Excuse me for having inserted your name as Executor. I fear it may not be in your favor to do much good to my family. But I am sure you will do all the good you can. Yrs. truly My most interesting papers in regard to my pecuniary affairs will be found 1  in the upper Apartment of Escrutory or...
1. To leave this Island from different points in two boats precisely at five Oclock on Saturday P M and to proceed to the place proposed. The party first arriving will wait the landing of the other; each boat shall be rowed by four confidential persons only, who shall remain in their respective boats untill called for. These persons are not to be armed in any manner whatever. There will be but...
I have engaged two gentlemen to dine with me tomorrow. If it be perfectly immaterial to you, I should prefer taking our ride on some subsequent day. I have the honor to be   Your most obt & very hum Sert ALS , New York State Historical Association, Cooperstown, New York.
In a conversation, my esteemed friend Dr. Livingston had with Judge Benson, this gentleman received an information of the injustice, the Lutheran church-trustees in Albany intend to do to me and the Lutheran church in general in America. As he intends to go up to Albany, where he is to Stay a considerable time, he generously promised Dr. Livingston, to look into this matter & endeavour to...
General Hamilton waited on Mr. Short to pay his respects & to request the pleasure of his Company at a Family Dinner in the Country on Saturday next three oClock. ALS , Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. Short, who had been Thomas Jefferson’s secretary when Jefferson was Minister to France during the Confederation period, became chargé d’affaires at Paris in 1789. In 1792 he was...
Herewith is a general statement of my pecuniary affairs; in which there can be no material error. The result is that calculating my property at what it stands me in, I am now worth about Ten thousand pounds, and that estimating according to what my lands are now selling for and are likely to fetch, the surplus beyond my debts may fairly be stated at nearly double that sum. Yet I am pained to...
Although William H. Richardson, Jersey City: A Study of Its Beginning, Its Growth, and Its Destiny (Jersey City, New Jersey, 1927), 26, and Winfield, Jersey City Charles H. Winfield, A Monograph on the Founding of Jersey City (New York, 1891). , 59, attribute the draft of the bill of this act to H, no evidence has been found that H wrote it. For the text of the act, see New Jersey Laws , 29th...
I have prepared for you a Thesis on Discretion. You may need it. God bless you. Your affectionate father. Hamilton, Reminiscences 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). , 40. In describing this letter and its enclosure, James A. Hamilton wrote: “In 1804 a student in Columbia College...
The celebrated Dean Swift calls discretion an Aldermanly virtue. With all his great and estimable qualities he possessed very little of it himself; and thus was disposed to turn it into derision. But his own experience should have taught him, that if not a splendid it is at least a very useful virtue, and ought on that account to be cultivated and cherished. Sayings of ⟨this⟩ kind by...
New York, June 28, 1804. Describes the lots in the townships in Scriba’s Patent which Hamilton, Church, and Laurance had drawn by lot from land which they had purchased from Jacob Mark and Company in 1796 and from Robert Gilchrist and Theodosius Fowler in 1802. Copy, Oneida County Clerk’s Office, Deeds, Vol. X, 499–502, Utica, New York. For background to this document, see “Mortgage by John...
Whether the observations in this letter are designed merely to justify the result, which is indicated in the close of the letter, or may be intended to give an opening for rendering any thing explicit which may have been deemed vague heretofore can only be judged of by the sequel. At any rate it appears to me necessary not to be misunderstood. Mr. Pendleton is therefore authorised to say that...
The letter which I had the honor to receive from you under date of yesterday, states among other things, that in Genl Hamilton’s opinion, Col: Burr has taken a very indefinite ground, in which he evinces nothing short of predetermined hostility; and that Genl Hamilton thinks it inadmissable that the enquiry should extend to his confidential as well as other conversations. To this Col. Burr can...