Alexander Hamilton Papers
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To Alexander Hamilton from Nicholas Romayne, [13 April 1797]

From Nicholas Romayne1

[New York, April 13, 1797]

I enclose you, my dear Sir, the letter I mentioned to you last evening that I had recd. from the other side of the Ocean on the subject of our conversation. I presume it may eventually be necessary for me to go over, but there is much reason to apprehend that I hazard more in going than most ordinary persons, and which merits some consideration on my part as well as my friends.

I know what I have said to you rests with you as a sacred deposit. If I come into town tomorrow evening I will not fail to call upon you.

Yours sincerely

Nichs. Romayne

ALS, Hamilton Papers, Library of Congress.

1Romayne was a New York City physician and professor of medicine who had attended King’s College when H was there (“Matricula of King’s College,” 1774) and received the M.D. degree at Edinburgh in 1780. In the seventeen-eighties he taught private classes in medicine and was a member of the faculty of the Medical School of Columbia College. He then formed his own medical school, the College of Physicians and Surgeons. When the Columbia authorities objected, Romayne abandoned his school, and in 1792–1793 he worked out an agreement by which his students would receive degrees from Queen’s (later Rutgers) College in New Jersey. He subsequently became a licentiate and a fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in London.

By the mid-nineties, Romayne was disgusted with the practice of medicine in the United States, and he decided that he could make his fortune in western land speculation. In this venture he became associated with Robert Troup, who was investing heavily in lands in western New York and was an attorney for the Pulteney Associates. It was Troup’s plan that Romayne go to Europe and raise money for the purchase of lands in western New York. The principal person that Romayne was to approach was Sir William Pulteney, the head of a group of English associates who had invested heavily in the Genesee country in western New York. For information on the Pulteney Associates, see Troup to H, March 31, 1795.

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