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Letters Home From Congress

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Collection Overview

This collection features letters home from Warren R. Austin (Senator, 1931-1946), Jacob Collamer (Representative, 1843-1848; Senator, 1855-1865), and Samuel C. Crafts (Representative, 1817-1824; Senator 1842-1843). The letters document travel to and from Washington by horse, boat, train, and airplane; lodging in boarding houses, hotels, and homes; social life in Washington; significant local and national events; and legislative issues under consideration in Congress. Austin's letters are particularly strong in their coverage of his frustration at being a minority Senator during the era of Roosevelt and the New Deal; his activities on the Judiciary Committee; and foreign affairs questions such as the Neutrality Act. The letters of Crafts and Collamer both extensively cover the question of slavery, discussing Missouri statehood, John Brown, the annexation of Texas, and the Civil War. All three Congressmen frequently discuss questions regarding appropriations and the Federal budget. Biographical information is available from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, at: http://bioguide.congress.gov/biosearch/biosearch.asp

Time Period Covered: 1818-1941 

Parent Collections

Congressional Papers

Related Archival Collection(s)

Warren R. Austin Collection
Crafts Family Collection
Collamer Family Papers

Published:  September 12, 2006,  University of Vermont, Bailey/Howe Library, Special Collections

Rights:  Requests to reproduce this item should be sent to the UVM Libraries' Center for Digital Initiatives at cdi@uvm.edu. For more information, see http://cdi.uvm.edu/about/rights. More information.


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Title:   Letter to Nathan and Mary Hill, July 3, 1842

Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

Date:  1842-07-03

Resource type:   text

Resource type:   letter

Letter to daughter and son-in-law. Topics include attendance at church meetings in the Representatives Hall in the Capitol and various chaplains and clergymen who preach there; regular attendance of Washington citizens, particularly blacks, at church meetings; plans to see Sabbath School scholars and black Sabbath School scholars 4th of July processions; death and funeral of Senator Samuel Southard (NJ); veto by President Tyler of Tariff Bill with provision postponing the distribution to the States of the proceeds of the sales of the public lands and return of bill to the House of Representatives with little chance of overriding the veto; Locofocos (Democrats) are against distribution and generally against protection, but despise Tyler.

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    Title:   Letter to Nathan and Mary Hill, July 31, 1842

    Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

    Date:  1842-07-31

    Resource type:   text

    Resource type:   letter

    Letter to daughter and son-in-law. Topics include attendance at a church meeting in the Representatives Hall in the Capitol with a eulogy for Rev. Cookman, a former chaplain of Congress who was lost on the steamship President; Senate debate on the Tariff Bill and the unlikelihood that it will be altered much from the version passed in the House; expected veto of the Tariff Bill by President Tyler; Locofoco (Democrat) opposition to the Tariff Bill; treaty between United States and Great Britain.

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      Title:   Letter to Nathan and Mary Hill, June 11, 1842

      Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

      Date:  1842-06-11

      Resource type:   text

      Resource type:   letter

      Letter to daughter and son-in-law. Topics include Tariff being considered in the House of Representatives; duties on imports; duty on foreign wool and response of wool manufacturers; distribution of the proceeds of the public lands; Apportionment Bill for Representatives to Congress debated in the Senate; fashions in Washington, DC; flowers and vegetables seen in DC.

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        Title:   Letter to Nathan and Mary Hill, June 18, 1842

        Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

        Date:  1842-06-18

        Resource type:   text

        Resource type:   letter

        Letter to daughter and son-in-law. Topics include reports of a snow storm in Vermont; Apportionment Bill passed in the Senate; Tariff being considered in the House of Representatives; distribution of the proceeds of the public lands; description of work in the Senate; Locofocos (Democrats) and Whigs in Congress; President Tyler and Congress.

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          Title:   Letter to Nathan and Mary Hill, June 25, 1842

          Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

          Date:  1842-06-25

          Resource type:   text

          Resource type:   letter

          Letter to daughter and son-in-law. Topics include different rules and protocols in the House of Representatives and the Senate such as the one hour rule; President Tyler and the Whigs in Congress; Apportionment Bill; Locofoco (Democrat) opposition to districting of States; Tariff being considered in the House of Representatives; duty on wool; Distribution Act; rumor of a Cabinet break-up by President Tyler.

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            Title:   Letter to Pliny Corbin, July 13, 1842

            Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

            Date:  1842-07-13

            Resource type:   text

            Resource type:   letter

            Topics include workload of Congress and industriousness of majority members in the Senate and the House; relationship of Whigs and Locofocos (Democrats) in Congress and relationship of Congress to President Tyler; Tariff Bill and expected Presidential veto.

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              Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, April 22, 1822

              Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

              Date:  1822-04-22

              Resource type:   text

              Resource type:   letter

              Letter to son. Topics include date of adjournment; appropriations for different departments of government; federal revenue.

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                Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, April 8, 1822

                Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                Date:  1822-04-08

                Resource type:   text

                Resource type:   letter

                Letter to son. Topics include date of adjournment; health of Representative John Randolph (VA).

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                  Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, December 20, 1820

                  Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                  Date:  1820-12-20

                  Resource type:   text

                  Resource type:   letter

                  Letter to son. Topics include debate in Congress over the establishment of a system of domestic manufactures.

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                    Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, December 24, 1821

                    Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                    Date:  1821-12-24

                    Resource type:   text

                    Resource type:   letter

                    Letter to son. Topics include slowness of mail; Bankruptcy bill.

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                      Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, December 3, 1821

                      Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                      Date:  1821-12-03

                      Resource type:   text

                      Resource type:   letter

                      Letter to son. Topics include traveling from Albany, NY to Washington, DC; beginning of Congressional session and search for a new Speaker of the House; lodgings in Washington, DC.

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                        Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, February 15, 1824

                        Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                        Date:  1824-02-13

                        Resource type:   text

                        Resource type:   letter

                        Letter to son. Topics include Congressional caucus on the presidential and vice-presidential candidates, with 64 of 69 votes for William Crawford for President and 57 votes for Albert Gallatin for Vice-President; no Vermont representatives or Senators participated in the caucus.

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                          Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, February 2, 1820

                          Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                          Date:  1820-02-02

                          Resource type:   text

                          Resource type:   letter

                          Resource type:   map

                          Letter to son. Topics include Missouri and slavery; includes a sketch by Crafts of Missouri and surrounding area.

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                            Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, February 2, 1823

                            Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                            Date:  1823-02-02

                            Resource type:   text

                            Resource type:   letter

                            Letter to son. Topics include Captain Alden B. Partridge's lectures on the Battle of Waterloo and national defense; health of Representative John Randolph (VA); Representative George McDuffie (SC).

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                              Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, February 3, 1822

                              Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                              Date:  1822-02-03

                              Resource type:   text

                              Resource type:   letter

                              Letter to son. Topics include apportionment of representatives following the last census and possible loss of a congressional seat in Vermont.

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                                Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, January 23, 1819

                                Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                                Date:  1819-01-23

                                Resource type:   text

                                Resource type:   letter

                                Letter to son. Topics include National Intelligencer; debate over censure of General Andrew Jackson over his engagement of the war in Florida.

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                                  Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, January 4, 1824

                                  Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                                  Date:  1824-01-04

                                  Resource type:   text

                                  Resource type:   letter

                                  Letter to son. Topics include upcoming presidential election and potential candidates John Calhoun, Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay, John Quincy Adams, and William Crawford; divide in electoral politics on question of slavery particularly in Pennsylvania and New York; question of a Congressional caucus on the election debated; health of members of Congress; Greek War of Independence.

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                                    Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, March 25, 1820

                                    Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                                    Date:  1820-03-25

                                    Resource type:   text

                                    Resource type:   letter

                                    Letter to son. Topics include mail robbery north of Baltimore; duel between Commodore Stephen Decatur and Commodore James Barron resulting in the death of Decatur; Decatur's funeral.

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                                      Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, March 3, 1822

                                      Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                                      Date:  1822-03-03

                                      Resource type:   text

                                      Resource type:   letter

                                      Letter to son. Topics include slowness of mail; health of members of Congress; date of adjournment.

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                                        Title:   Letter to Samuel P. Crafts, November 19, 1820

                                        Creator:  Crafts, Samuel Chandler, 1768-1853

                                        Date:  1820-11-19

                                        Resource type:   text

                                        Resource type:   letter

                                        Letter to son. Topics include traveling to Washington; election of a Speaker of the House to replace Representative Henry Clay (KY) held up by split between northern and southern Representatives on slavery question; constitution of Missouri and slavery

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                                          Title:   Letter to William Collamer, January 11, 1849

                                          Creator:  Collamer, Jacob, 1791-1865

                                          Date:  1849-01-11

                                          Resource type:   letter

                                          Letter to son. Topics include constituent business regarding William Billings and the East Barnard, Vermont post office.

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                                            Title:   Letter to William Collamer, January 19, 1859

                                            Creator:  Collamer, Jacob, 1791-1865

                                            Date:  1859-01-19

                                            Resource type:   letter

                                            Letter to son. Topics include Tariff; Pacific Rail Road; African Slave Trade; Amistad; Vermont State House; mailing of government documents by Collamer; Joint Resolution introduced by Senator Solomon Foot (VT) on bounty land law; Bankruptcy Bill.

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                                              Title:   Letter to William Collamer, January 24, 1848

                                              Creator:  Collamer, Jacob, 1791-1865

                                              Date:  1848-01-24

                                              Resource type:   letter

                                              Letter to son. Topics include General Zachary Taylor.

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                                                Title:   Warren R. Austin letter to Mrs. C.G. (Ann) Austin, December 12, 1931

                                                Creator:  Austin, Warren Robinson, 1877-1962

                                                Date:  1939-12/12

                                                Resource type:   text

                                                Resource type:   letters

                                                Topics include first days in Washington.

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                                                  Title:   Warren R. Austin letter to Mrs. C.G. (Ann) Austin, January 11, 1932

                                                  Creator:  Austin, Warren Robinson, 1877-1962

                                                  Date:  1932-01-11

                                                  Resource type:   text

                                                  Resource type:   letters

                                                  Topics include Memorial to Senator Greene; political speeches; inefficiency of the Senate.

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