[23 October 1838]
My Dear Wife,
If you look in the Gazette
of this day, you will find a nomination
of Mr. Pickman & myself for Congress.
What an important family we are! I
was nominated by the Convention, & he by
an assembly of merchants at one of the offices
last evening. No man in the District would
be more rejoiced at with his consenting to be a
Candidate than I should -- no one would do
more to promote his election.
I requested Mr. C. not to
my name, but he said he was requested to
do it by the Convention. I have seen the
Committee, who have urged me excessively
not to decline, & have assured me, that if I
am elected, I may if I think proper resign
without going at all, six months or nine
months hence (for I should not have to
go this year) or I may resign after one
but this ought not to be mentioned.
Judge White & other judicious friends say I ought
to go -- that it will be beneficial, & no loss in
a pecuniary view. I am & have been much
perplexed. When I think of my dear wife &
children, I feel disposed to decline positively.
But again I ask myself, whether I should
not like to go to Congress in the course of my
life? I confess I should -- & this for many rea-
sons. And I can never go more conveniently
than now. It is better even on account of
my family, than afterwards.
Upon the whole my dear
Mary, I shall not, I think decline pub-
lickly, unless Mr. P. or some intelligent
merchant can be selected. "Bear with me
a little in my folly -- yea bear with me a
little." Your smiles my dear wife are
more precious to me than all the honors of office.
To the good of my family I feel devoted.
That is now my first object. It is the stimu-
make. I may be deceived -- (the heart
is [deceitful?] deceitful above all things)
but I think this outweighs infinitely
all other objects in my estimation.
"at home or abroad, in the house or by
the way" -- ever Your most affect. husband
I don't suppose I have a more sincere friend
(not connected with me) than Col. P. who says
he thinks it will be no injury to me, & that I
had better not decline, -- with many
friendly expresss -- compliments &c
Whether injurious or not I beleive will depend
upon [The letter ends abruptly here.]