William Hickling Prescott

By C. Harvey Gardiner | Go to book overview
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Your description of men and places is very entertaining ...

IN THE AUTUMN OF 1814 young Prescott embarked upon preparatory study for his career. 1 By way of background he first read widely in historical literature. A year of that and he would enter his father's office for training. Across the years William Prescott's idea that his elder son would follow in his footsteps was taken for granted by all the Prescotts.

The same autumn weeks brought fifty-two-year-old William Prescott to one of the climactic moments of his career, his attendance at the Hartford Convention. Its agenda included public grievances and concerns, defense against the enemy, and preliminary steps looking toward revision of the Constitution of the United States. The twenty-six spokesmen for New England met twice daily, six days a week, from

For this interval in late 1814 and early 1815 the sources are: WHP to C. E. Prescott, March 12, 1816, Prescott papers; W. Prescott to Lowell, August 14, 1834, Harvard College; Gardiner, ed., Papers, pp. 5-12; Theodore Dwight, History of the Hartford Convention ( New York and Boston, 1833); Henry Adams , History of the United States of America, 1801-1817, 4 vols. ( New York, 1940), bk. VIII, 292; M. A. DeWolfe Howe, ed., The Articulate Sisters ( Cambridge, 1946), pp. 12-14 passim; Jackson, Another Letter, pp. 133-141; James Jackson, "On Rheumatism in the Heart, Eyes, &c.," The New-England Journal of Medicine and Surgery, 5 ( April, 1816): 143-146.

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