East New Market


28 January 1839 

George Winthrop to Thomas Eccleston

(Collection of Frank Collins, Fort Mill, SC)

Envelope - East New Market, Md, January 30th, 10c
Thos J.H. Eccleston, Esq. of the Senate, Annapolis, Maryland

E. New Market, Jan. 28th 1839

Dear Sir

Your favour of the 9th was rec'd by due course of mail, as well as the documents therein named, for which, and the promised paper you will please accept my cordial thanks.

We have got tolerably well fixt for house keeping, that is we have plenty to eat, and wood & clothes enough to keep us warm, but we have not much furniture.  We are very domestic, have not been out to spend a day since we have been here.  Matty says she is a very nice manager, but I hope you will come and see and not take her word wholly for it.  You know I cannot tell whether she is or not.  We keep but one servant and you would laugh to see me out cutting wood these cold mornings before sunrise.  Upon the whole I am very well pleased with the married life and housekeeping.  My school is larger than has ever before been known in this place numbering 47 scholars.  It is at present connected with the primary school of this school district, but that connection I think will be broken when the addition to the house which is now in progress is finished.  With the continued aid from the state I think there will be a profitable, and very beneficial school to the community, independent of the primary school.  Those schools as now conducted, instead of lessening , increase the demand for schools of a higher order.  And I know no place in the county where one could be more advantageously situated than here.  This, and the adjoining school districts can, I think furnish scholars enough for its support.  This is scholars enough, who wish to study what is not and cannot be advantageously taught in the primary schools as now conducted.  My no. of scholars would be much increased had I room for them. 

There is no move here in the political world worthy of notice, everything remains in status quo.#  The whigs so far as I know, continue true to their integrity, & the L.F.'s are still chained to their 'Idol'.  Wise's speech on Swartwout's defalcation is a bitter pill for them, but they swallow it in silence.  Pray what change is to be made in the officers of this county, some L.F.'s say all have got to go, others that only a part are to be thrown overboard.  Who is  to be county surveyor, I am told there are five or six applicants, and among others Levin Craig of Tobaccostick is said to be one.  I hope you will never consent to appoint him, for he is no surveyor not has he any Mathematical knowledge, this I know to be fact.  If there is to be a change and one of our party is to get the office I should like my name among them, unless  the party wish otherwise.  I am very well pleased that you belong to the six year class and that so many of the L.F.'s go out at the end of two years.  I hope my shall then be able to keep them out.  I saw James the other day, he said your family were all well.  Write me as soon as convenient and I will try to keep you acquainted with the news here.  I shall leave the rest for Matty.

Yours with respect & esteem
Geo Winthrop

# or, status quo ante bellum

 [L.F. stands for LocoFoco.  The name was first applied, in 1834, to a radical portion of the Democratic party.  At a democratic meeting in New York, in which there was great diversity of sentiment, the chairman left his seat and had the lights were extinguished for the purpose of dissolving the meeting.  However those who were opposed to an adjournment produced locofoco matches to rekindle the lights and continue the meeting.   In the 1840 election, the term "Locofoco" was applied to the entire Democratic Party by its Whig opponents, both because Democratic presidential candidate Martin Van Buren had incorporated many Locofoco ideas into his economic policy, and because Whigs considered the term to be derogatory.  In general, Locofocos supported Andrew Jackson and Van Buren, and were for free trade, greater circulation of specie, legal protections for labor unions and against paper money, financial speculation, and state banks.

In 1829, President Andrew Jackson appointed Samuel Swartwout to serve as Collector of the Port of New York. Nine years later, in 1838, it came to light that Mr. Swartwout had been embezzling (to the tune of some $2.25 million), and he fled to Europe, evidently with his ill-gotten gains. ]