Author sick offering a partnership with his business to the recipient

Date Written

Oct. 22, 1818

Samuel Ayers Bradley was 43 years old when this was written.
The recipient, John Stuart Barrows, was 27 when it was received.

Samuel Ayers Bradley died 25 years, 11 months, 2 days after writing this.
It was written 200 years, 10 months, 30 days ago.
It was a Thursday.

Portland
Oct 22, 1818

Dear Barrows,

I rec’d yours of the 18th mentioning my notes for my Sup. Court Papers, by W. Trist & have also rec’ d yours of the 19th by Capt. Durgin. I wrote you by Whitney, that your Brother’s health was improving and gave Whitney special directions, & rec’d his promise to deliver my letter to you on Saturday, but he informed me before he left Portland that he had wisely instructed my letter to “Sr Pierce”, I then predicted the fate of the letter & ordered W. to go up to Fryeburg & see you on Saturday

My health is miserable & I should either set out for Fryeburg, forthwith, or get on board a packet (which I am advised to do) & sail too Boston, but I can make no arrangement of my actions, where Mr. Chase is not opposed, & must wait, probably, until the end of the term. The Court will adjourn on Saturday (& it is expected) to meet again of the 2nd Tuesday of Dec.

My horse is quite as sick as his master & the Farriers consider his case doubtful.

You will perceive therefore that I have, in common with many worthy citizens but a sickly prospect before me—if I conclude to take a trip by water, & turn inside out, I shall write you again before [?] Portland. I wish you would look out instanter, and promise a half dozen loads of hardwood. Robert observed that Mr. Thomas had some wood on the point suitable for the office—ascertain of Thomas if he will let me have a half dozen cords –if he will, perhaps Robert would let his men & team haul it immediately to the office—if Thomas refuses write to Maj. Ben & Ben Heath, Jr.—get wood from anyone who owes me & will bring wood—but don’t delay—you can probably obtain some of Thoms—perhaps W? H.Y.B. Osgood will let his man haul a load or two of good sizable wood you know who owe small sums & would be likely to furnish wood—if they all fail, perhaps Wm. Haley would supply two or three loads on reasonable turns. Perhaps Sam’l Walker& Robert Colby would each supply a load.

If I should conclude to sail, you must remain in the office, until my return to Fryeburg. If I should never return the way will be clear for you. If I should live & regain my health, I apprehend it would not be expedient or calculated to promote either your permanent interest or mine, for you to remain in my office & do business for yourself [?] with my business—you must have either a separate office or do business as a partner—you never could do business in my office or in any other office, where another person should be doing, where another person should be doing the same kind of business, without mutual inconvenience & dissatisfaction—if therefore, you should conclude to continue in Fryeburg, you must either open an office & do business independently of all connexions or you must connect yourself as a copartner—as no opportunity offers or can offer to you, in Fryeburg, to commence business there in your profession, as a copartner, except with me; and, as you appear desirous to remain in Fryeburg you had better remain in my office, until I return, & jag on, as to heretofore; & when I return, if we can’t make some management which shall be mutually satisfactory to us, measures can then be taken to enable you to open a separate office—in the meantime, you can have a sign prepared—you will find a sign board already made & painted, lying over the wood room in the shed—perhaps it may be soiled & will require the brush anew—if there is no person there, who can letter it handsomely, you can let that remain until I return. & I can do it as well as I did my own. I intend to build an addition to the office, if I live & am able to continue business, & intended as I suggested before I left home, to have done it this fall—“John Knight inquired of me what I would give for the frame, & underpinning & I have the frame raised. If Doct. Chandler will procure a frame & the underpinning & bruk of W. Knight, have the underpinnings set & the frame raised, I will have it done immediately perhaps the Doct. Can make a bargain with W. Knight to procure the frame, & underpinning, & set the underpinnings frame & raise the frame, for all which I would allow the Doct. a fair reasonable consideration—I have named Doct. Chandler, as you know the Doct. Is indebted to me & presuming he might have some connexion in business with W. Knight, or, that any rate, that he might find it more inconvenient to negotiate with & pay W. Knight than to pay me—Mr. Knight told me he should charge 25 units per foot for the underpinnings, but I suggested to him that 20 cents would be high enough, & he appeared inclined to attend to my opinion, as to the pence—perhaps the Doct. could agree with Knight for the underpinnings at 20 cents a foot; but I would allow the Doct. 25 cents a foot—however, this is rather “building” a “castle in the air”, you will say. I must return to myself. I am miserably unwell & cannot make any calculations for the future, unless m health should mend—as to what you suggest about managements of a more important and interesting nature, I cannot now decide or say anything. Whatever may be fit & in my power, I shall be disposed to attempt; but my health & circumstances, you are aware, must govern my future determinations. You must take care never to lean on a broken staff, not to place too much reliance on a reed which trembles in the wind—I shall always rejoice in your health & prosperity, & I hope I shall never fail to make every reasonable effort in my power to promote your welfare—

Your friend,
Samuel A. Bradley

P.S. I have just seen Doct. Mitchell, who informs me your Brother is getting better.

Scans of Letter