New York Feb 26 1834.
When a man pays you a bank note which he tells you some people have supposed to be spurious, and at the same time offers you a large discount from its value if you will take it at your own risk, you may be certain that the note is counterfeit and that he has pretty good reason to believe it so, and the best way in such a case is to return it to him and put yourself to no further trouble about it. Your letter enclosing the $100-- note on the South Carolina bank arrived today, 1 and I immediately sent out our clerk to inquire of the brokers as to its genuineness and get me city bills for it if good. He found none of them willing to exchange it, and several of them pronounced it spurious. At S. & M. Alle[n?]'s he was told that a little while since four of these notes of the same denomination had been put off upon the brokers here about the same time, and that upon being sent to Charleston they had been pronounced forgeries. The note you sent me they said was evidently one of the same batch. I therefore send it back to you without delay that you may get the amount of Cutler as soon as possible. I am extremely desirous that you should get the demand in a train to be paid, before I leave the country, if I leave it at all. When you next write let me know what the face of the note is, the date and the indorsements.
I have heard nothing at all of Cyrus, at which I wonder not a little. I wrote more than three weeks since to mother but I have heard nothing from her nor indeed have I had the least intelligence from Cummington since early last fall. You do not inform us in your letter whether the $300-- which you lent for me was likely to be paid in season to apply it to the purchase of new lands. Arthur I have not heard from. If he sends me the $100-- I do not think I shall send it back to Illinois--but if he does not, I desire that the sum together with the 300 dollars may form a fund for the purchase of lands on my account in the most judicious situation that you and Cyrus may agree upon. I think I wrote to you fully on this subject in my wife's letter. 2 While I am absent I hope you will watch over my interests in Illinois, buy land for me, and see that it is not sold for taxes.
You talk in your letter to my wife of planting an orchard and eating the fruit of it if you live to be old. Why do you not graft your crab apple trees with scions procured from the older settlements in your state? You would then have apples in a very few years. Did you ever think of this? I thought you had already built a house. How comes it that you talk of having a cabin of your own another year? Does the cabin belong to Cyrus?
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Publication information: Book title: The Letters of William Cullen Bryant. Volume: 1. Contributors: William Cullen Bryant II - Editor, Thomas G. Voss - Editor, William Cullen Bryant - Author. Publisher: Fordham University Press. Place of publication: New York. Publication year: 1975. Page number: 394.