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Letter to Miss Louise Lovejoy, Care of C. D. Ferries, Esq., Buffalo, New York, from “Gustaf,” New York, January 20, 1849



New York Jan the 20th / 49

I received yours of saturday last at the same time that I was mailing mine this afternoon. I culd not understand why I had no answer to mine of Thursday, and consequently I thought that it had misscarried, for fear that it had, I inclosed yours to Mr Schuyler, as I had written to him at the same time. I can give you no idea of my feelings of to day although my former letter will show it to some ectent. I do not know when I have been so depressed; and when I read your letter, I actually entertained serious thoughts of going back to Buffalo. This idea I could not of course harbour long, and I was in the deepest distress for about an hour. I suddenly bethought myself that prayer would be a remedy. I went up to my room, and there for the first time in a long time I prayed heartily. I had such a sense of my own inability to do anything without the help of God, I felt that I had undertaken this enterprize in my own strength, and I felt as if God had justly punished me for my arrogance by disappointing me, and I hope it was done for the best, I felt grateful to God for correcting me and I trust I gave myself up entirely up into his hand; I had to say from the bottom of my heart: “Thy will be done!” I believe I succeeded, for after I was done and while I was praying I felt a load removed.

I am now contented if not happy. and I trust that I may never again repine, but take whatever may befall me with submission, as being ordered by God for my good. Truly, God will do what he pleaseth, and he “scourgeth every som [one] whom he loveth” I write this that you may try the same remedy, depend upon it if you humble yourself before God, and resign yourself entirely into his hands, he will give you peace of mind, I fear we both have neglected our duty, and gone against his will too often. Perhaps I wrong you by comparing you with myself, but if you are truly a disciple of Christ it can do you no harm to exhort you to continue faithful. I think “Thou doest almost anticipate my heart; . . . . . . . Deem that some unknown influence some sweet oracle, Communicates between us, though unseen, In absence, and attracts us to each other” You see I have been reading Sardanapalus, the lines or words which I left out I did not consider reveland [relevant] to my present purpose not that I considered them unfit at all times. They are placing cards on the same table on which I am writing and I must stop and bid you Good night tomorrow is Sunday and then I will resume again if I can. So now good night! Dearest!!!

Sunday evening.

This morning I called upon the Capt of the vessel I spoke of, he seems to be a gentleman, he said he thought there would be no difficulty about passage, but told me to call at the office tomorrow I hope, but dont ecpect much, at any rate I mean to take it very patiently and trust the event to God. I have been to Church 3 times today in the morning to Trinity Church Brooklyn. This Church is new and built in the same manner as That of New York, but is far handsomer in Finish every window is filled with pictorial representation of Scriptural history. The colors are much more beautiful than any thing I have seen of stained glass as yet. The music is better and you hear every word with great ease. The sermon was good but as it was local I did not feel it much – In the afternoon and evening I went to the Tabernacle in New York this is a curious building with a round gallery that nearly surrounds the church at one end is the organ and singing gallery, in front of which the pulpit stands, altogether it is a pleasant house, though somewhat unique. I have spent this day better than I have any sabbath for many months; a sence of dependence on God has pervaded my mind all day, and I have been comparably contented. I feel assured that God will do all things best and I am resolved to do my duty as well as I can, and leave the result to him, I want you to do the same, when you are really willing to give up all for God there is a pleasure a heavenly calm in your devotions, that, I am sure, cannot be experienced otherwise. I cannot help longing for the time when we shall meet again however, which I hope, will soon happen.

I rather think I shall be home before the 15th of June, I will if possible, depend on that, for it is the greatest self denial I ever experienced to be absent from you; when evening comes I feel exceedingly lonesome, nothing seems to be able to make up in the slightest degree, the void. Good night my dearest Louise and may God guard and protect you and yours. Amen! Monday afternoon. I went out this morning to see about going in the vessel but although the Capt. was willing to take me there was some difficulty on account of the quarantine laws imposed upon vessels from N. Y. & N. Orleans but he told me to call again. In the meantime I went to look out for another chance, went on board of a vessel bound to Demarara, but without success I next found one bound to Porto Rico the place where Wilyers was, the Captain knew Wilyers, and seemed very willing to assist me but he said I must see the owner. One second consideration he told me to see him again & not the owner he would help me if he could, he seemed unwilling that I should go in the forecastle because he thought it would hurt my reputation there and said if I must I must go in the Cabin, what the result will be I know not yet but I am prepared for the worse.

I called upon Mr Elliot the artist to day and I must say his pictures are very fine I think it is not saying too much to say that he is next to Page the best in the united states, I do not think he equals Page though. He is a queer looking man a very high forhead dark and intelligent eyes a finely shaped nose not very long and somewhat thick the whole face below the nose is covered with a black beard which gives him rather a ferocious look, he treated me civilly and I was highly satisfied with my visit. My religious feelings continue calm and I feel assured that God will do all for my ultimate good if I put my trust in him.

Dearest Louise I never felt what you were to me till now that I am absent from you. I thought I could bear a short separation with comparative ease among the bustling world into which I was going, but I was mistaken not a lady in the street but I think of you not an evening elapses that I do not feel my loneliness and wish myself by your side. How long the time will seem! notwithstanding which I shall have little enough [time?] to do all I want to do [canceled?? “in”]. As I think it will be very likely, that I shall have to stop here some days longer I may as well send this to day, as I shall have time enough to write another before I go, and it may be some comfort to you to learn that I am not so cheerless as I was when I wrote last when you write next take your time and write me a long letter tell me all that’s going on among our friends what does your mother say and what of Mary Hope is Sarah well? How is your cold? coughing yet? take good care of yourself for my sake if not for yours own and I will take the best of care of mine for yours.

I shall probably be gone before I can receive your answer, but I have made arrangement with a friend in Brooklyn to forward my letters. Inclose mine therefore in an envelope to Mr Fred. Denison Brooklyn N. Y. and I will be very likely to get them, when on the sea I will write when I get on shore I will write as often as I can find opportunity of writing them

Ever Yours Gustaf.

(written at top of first page) remember me to Sarah, to the Beards Margaret Mrs Wolf and all who enquire after me I forgot the second volume of England has Langdon carried it home? if not send Charles for it. Do not my letters come too often? I[f] they do its your own fault yours cannot come too often for me.

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Notes: Letter to Miss Louise Lovejoy, Care of C. D. Ferries, Esq., Buffalo, New York, from “Gustaf,” New York, January 20, 1849; from the Phillip F. Schlee Collection.

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