• Andover, MA, Seminarian Says Friend Has Southern Sympathies; Dies From Disease After Plantation Work at Port Royal

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    DAVID BOWE (1833-1862) graduated from Yale College and Andover Seminary just before the Civil War.  Research shows that Bowe died of typhus at the seminary after working on a plantation, as superintendent, in Port Royal, South Carolina. Bowe would spend a portion of 1862 at Port Royal before contracting the disease.  He went into a coma on a boat while coming back to New York City.

     

    Offering three ALSs by Bowe, eight pages total, 5 x 8, written in August and September of 1860, while attending Union Theological Seminary in Andover, MA, to his friend William Anderson.  The letters cover everyday matters, including owing his friend money for his portrait, with a reference toward politics of the day, referring to them as “foggy.”  At the time, the nation was struggling with slavery on the eve of the Civil War. Bowe suspects that his friend Anderson has Southern leanings.

     

    In small part, August 30, 1860: “I believe you hold a small note against me for the balance due on my picture and if you will write me and tell me the amount of the note with interest…I will send you the amount…I believe you thought of coming this Summer. If I have to send it South I shall send it by Express…

     

    September 6, 1860: Enclosed is the amount due you, $11.37, with which please accept my most hearty thanks for the long delay…I would complete the interest, but not wishing to be the passive recipient of a ‘thrashing’ or to adopt the unministerial alternative of a fight, I have considered discretion the better part of valor and accordingly send you ‘merry’ interest…I have been farming this summer but am going away to the Seminary again in a few days…What do you think of politics! Looks foggy don’t it! I suppose you are able to take somewhat of a Southside view of the matter.  I wish I could spend a year at the South. I should like it much…”

     

    September 24, 1860: “…I am in Andover. I was not certain of coming here when I wrote you last as it depended on causes beyond my control but I am much pleased with the Sem[inary]…”

     

    Folds, toning and holes punched in the left margin for storage.  Very readable.

     

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