(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
Deerfield May 31st 1807
You say a long time has elapsed since you have seen or heard from me my dear Girl, I believe it seems quite as long to me. I had almost relinquished the idea of ever hearing from you again; with the greatest pleasure I received one more kind epistle, I had just set down to dine when I received it it afforded me a plentiful meal, and merely through friendship I attempt to answer it, but how can I think of [it w]hen you are in every way better quaified to write than I am
0 friendship [ ]very good!
How seldom [are you?] understood;
How oft for [ ]or for fame,
We call to nought thy sacred name.
Now let us consider [ ]tory the advanta[ge of gr]eat friendship, what a pleasure it is to have a true friend, one who will not [ ]their sentiments at every change of fortune; and to whom we [can co]fide in
with safety, how truly wretched must that person be who has no one to whom she can give the endearing title of a friend; I hope I may expect a visit from you before long I should be pleased to wait on you. I dare say it would be pleasing [to] all of your acquaintance at Deerfield; how refreshing it would be to see you running in at [ ]
I wish it might be so, that I might repose my cares in your gen [ ]aw Mr [ ]the other day he has three or four [ ]in Vermont State, he said he should be pleased to wait on [ ]Bordwell down to Westhaven he enquired very particular to know if I had heard from you, in his absence.
Betsey, I did not come to the honour to see the amiable Miss Trowbridge, but I have heard she was very intelligible I placed not much confidence in what I heard she said, those persons which [ ] so much are not so much to be depended upon in general. You wished [me to] give you the particulars concerning Mr Sheldon I hear that M[ ] more comfortable at present it is not probable it will be of long continuance by the appearance it will not be a great while before she will [be] lodged in the [ ] grave Mr Sheldon remains very much as he has done [ ] this some t[ ] past; Mrs Bordwell will give you
the particulars, with reluctance I close my letter, wishing you not to let one opportunity pass without writing [dea]r friend - Adieu
I understand by Mr Kimberly you are placed in [a] public station, may you maintain it with dignity and be a delight to your friends.
PS Mary Ashley desires her best love to you sincerely and if a letter would be acceptable should be happy to write you not having fulfilled your promise in writing to her I could not prevail upon her to write my mother aunt and sister remember their love likewise
PS Betsey I spoke to Mrs Bordwell about getting me a white gown she said she had no doubt but you would get it I wish for four yards if it is yard wide Mrs Bordwell will get twelve lots [ ] to drawer.
Contact us for information about using this image.
Local scholars, as well as those from a distance of as far as 100 miles, attended Deerfield Academy after it opened January 1, 1799. Henry Hitchcock (1783-1861) of Deerfield, Massachusetts, met Betsey Kimberley (1790-1879) of West Haven, Connecticut, while they were students at the Academy. They established a friendship which was nurtured by correspondence in which Hitchcock says if she would come back to Deerfield he "would be pleased to wait upon" her. By this he meant that he would "court" her. She apparently was interested, also, for they were married three years later on October 29, 1810.
top of page
Deerfield Academy student letter to Betsey Kimberley
| author Henry Hitchcock (1783-1861)
| date May 31, 1807
| location Deerfield, Massachusetts
| height 11.5"
| width 7.25"
| process/materials manuscript, paper, ink
| item type Personal Documents/Letter
| accession # #L99.105
Send an e-Postcard of this object