New York, June 12, 1825.
My dear Frances
I envy you very much the pure air, the breezes, the shade and the coolness which you must enjoy in the country, while I am sweltering under a degree of heat which I never experienced in my whole life time for so long a period. For six days the thermometer has hardly been below 80 degrees--day or night. I cannot write, except in the morning when the air is a little cooler--but in the middle of the day when the thermometer is at 85 or 87 it is almost impossible to collect resolution enough even to read. Yesterday in the afternoon I rode out a few miles into the country-- I found it worse if possible than the city. The roads were full of carts, barouches, chaises, hacks and people on horseback, passing each other; and a thick cloud of dust lay above the sroad as far as the eye could follow it; it was almost impossible to breathe the stifling element.
Along with these inconveniences however there is one advantage which to me is of considerable importance. The nights are very dry. I do not perceive that the night-air is at all more damp than that of the day. There is a window at the head of my bed, and I have slept with it wide open for six nights past, without experiencing the least inconvenience without perceiving any thing like that current of moist air which in the country you always feel coming from an open window in the stillest nights. A cough, which I have had hanging upon my lungs ever since last March, has left me entirely. Upon the whole I think that the change of climate is likely to prove rather beneficial to my health than otherwise.
I lodge in Chambers Street--near the Unitarian Church which, of course, I attend pretty regularly. 1 Mr Evrard, my host, has lived here twenty years--and during that time no epidemic fever has prevailed in this quarter-- His house is at some distance from that part of the city in which the yellow fever made so many victims a few years since. The north river is at a short distance from us--I see it whenever I put my head out of the window--and whenever the wind is westerly it comes to us from over a body of water several miles in width. 2
Monday June 13th.-- I have not received a letter from you as I ex