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[Letter] 1819 Nov. 21, Hermitage [to] Andrew Jackson Donelson, West Point, New York / Andrew Jackson

Title:[Letter] 1819 Nov. 21, Hermitage [to] Andrew Jackson Donelson, West Point, New York / Andrew Jackson : a machine readable transcription of an image
Author:Jackson, Andrew

This work is the property of the Tennessee State Library and Archives, Nashville, TN. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching, and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text. For all other use contact the Tennessee State Library and Archives, 403 Seventh Avenue North, Nashville, TN 37243-0312. (615) 741-2764.

Date: November 21, 1819
Extent: 4p
Summary:This document is a letter written from Andrew Jackson to his nephew Andrew Jackson Donelson on November 21, 1819. In the letter, Jackson inquires about Donelson's studies and his health. He asks Donelson to write more often and to express his views and opinions with Jackson on different subjects.
Collection:Sir Emil Hurja Collection

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Hermitage Novbr [November] 21st 1819
Dear Andrew

On my return from Florence I wrote you from Nashville a hasty scroll in the night — I fondly cherished the hope of receiving from you a letter on my return — on this I was disappointed — The recpt [receipt] of a letter from Edward dated the 25th inst [instant] gave me the pleasing intelligence that you were well — This was gratifying to your aunt and myself, being both fearfull [fearful] from your long silence that you were sick. —

I am certain that at the advanced stage of your education you can attend to nothing more beneficial than writing — It employs the thoughts, expands the mind, and will give you by a proper attention an easy habit of communicating your thoughts. There is nothing so beatifull [beautiful] in writing as a plain easy stile [style] — Mr Madison excelled in this, and altho [although] Mr Jeffersons writings has met with the approbation that they meritted [merited] — I have always thought that the chasteness of Mr Madison excelled any american [American] author I ever read — It is by habit that this easy & plainess [plainness] of stile [style], which I call Elegance is to be acquired — it is when writing to your friend, when you ought to be free from restraint, that you can exercise this freedom of expression, by which tone you will adopt that ease & plainess [plainness] of expression, [added: style] that will lead you into the habit of the common use — When you know the pleasure it gives me to send your letters, why not amuse yourself in writing me — choose your own subject — and handle it in any way your Judgt [Judgement] may direct — it will give me pleasure to approve, or to point out your errors

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if any should exist with the freedom of a friend, This will give you a confidence in yourself, which to become great you must acquire, keeping your mind allways [always] open to reason & convertion [conversion] — but never yielding your opinion untill [until] the Judgt. [Judgement] is convinced. Independance [Independence] of mind and action, is the noblest atribute [attribute] of the human mind man — he that possises [possesses] it, and practises [practices] upon [added: it,] may be said to possess the real image of his creator — without it, man becomes the real tool in the hands of others, and is wielded, like a mere attomaton [automaton] , sometimes, without knowing it, to the worst of purposes hence the necessity, of all inteligent [intelligent] men, exercising the talent that God has given them agreable [agreeable] to that Judgt. [Judgement] that they possess, which they have derived from duty, improved by Education, and never abandoning it, untill [until] their reason and Judgt. [Judgement] are convinced that they are in error. This independant [indepenent] course gives a peacefull [peaceful] conscience, and when the public voice, being misled, disapproves the course, innocence Smiles with contempt at public clamour [clamor] — time, dispells [dispels] the mists' error from their eyes, & truth ultimately prevails when the independance [independence] of the individual is hailed, by all the approbation of all, and thus rewarded for his virtue & independance [independence].

your friends are all well and frequently inquiring after you — The first pride of my life has been gratified, at hearing of the honourable [honorable] station you now fill — This is the reward of your application and the proper course you have pursued — let it operate upon you, stedfastly [steadfastly] to persue [pursue] this proper course, without vanity, or pride — by which you can only reach [unclear: per ferment ] in life that will be permanant [permanent], that is by deserving it. I enclosed you in my last one hundred dollars in a bill of the [unclear: Brones ]

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bank of the U [United] States — I am anxious to learn whether it has reached you, there are so many roberies [robberies] of the mail that I am fearfull it has been partained [pertained], as I have not been advised of its receipt by you. I have again to renew my request so often repeated that you write me often, and inform me of your views and future intentions.

your aunt & Andrew Joins me in our best wishes for your health & happiness — we are all anxious to see you so soon as your studies will permit; if we remain in peace I wish you to study love — and live with me — if we have war and I should participate in it, I will have you with me — but I hope our country will be blessed with peace, war is a great evil when it can be avoided, & a curse to any nation — present us to Edward affectionately & believe me to be your affectionate uncle

Andrew Jackson
Cadet A. J. [Andrew Jackson] Donelson

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[added: 25]

Cadet Andrew J. [Jackson] Donelson West Point State of N. [New] York
[added: Mail }]

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