study--a professed statesman--one whose situation and high office give him every opportunity for examining these subjects--
What are the views of administration and the prospects of the nation? Is all probability of peace cut off? Is the war to be interminable? I earnestly wish you would tell me something about these things not only for my sake but that of others and you would save me much of such dialogue as the following-- "Any letters from Mr. Baylies lately?""Yes." --"Well, what does he write?" --"That it is very hot weather at Washington." You may tell the administration that if the system of taxation proposed by the committee of ways and means goes into effect the people of the Old Colony will not like them any better for it. [If Mr. Madison wants to make us sick of his war let him lay upon our shoulders those "burdens" which are so cheerfully and proudly borne; let him increase those "taxes" which are paid with so much "promptness and alacrity."] 4 Many are very boisterous about it but then become calm by the time the taxes are to be paid.
I cannot tell how mature the publick feelings are--but the subject of a separation of the states is more boldly and frequently discussed--and the measures of our State Legislature are received amongst our party as far as I can judge with universal approbation--while the democrats regard them with considerable alarm.
MANUSCRIPT: NYPI-GR (draft) PUBLISHED (in Part): Life, I, 126-127.
[Bridgewater, October c29, 1814]
My Dear Sir
Yours of the 12th and 18th I received on the 26th of this month, and thank you for the solicitude you express concerning my studies-- 1 Although you may not doubt my diligence yet perhaps you may justly fear my indolence-- I go on much after my old way making very good resolutions to be industrious and never fulfilling them-- To prevent however