Martha Jefferson Randolph to Ellen W. Randolph Coolidge

We arrived here at 6 o clock this morning My beloved Ellen after a most prosperous voyage of 18 hours. the swell round Judith’s point soon rendered the lady’s cabin, in which there were at least 20 ladies & 9 or ten children, a most uncomfortable residence, but My old friend Betsy who was in the Connecticut when we came on, was awaiting us in the Chancellor Livingston, as attentive and obliging as ever. I consigned Septimia to her care and joined a little party in the Lantern on deck where I found a Mr Suli Sullivan of Boston a young clergyman, and a Mrs & Miss Jakes (the son had been a class mate of Joseph’s) and two or three gentlement all disposed to be sociable—Jefferson joined us and we remained untill the chill of the evening obliged us to take shelter in the cabin. by this time how ever we had got in to smooth water and it is impossible for any thing to have been more quiet or rapid than the rest of the passage. I had lost so much sleep that I should have [. . .] given up my supper rather than set up a minute for it, but My kind hearted Betsy insisted on bringing us some very good tea and excellent preserved ginger & cake, Tim and My self took our supper’s in our births, and passed a very comfortable night while Cornelia who laid herself out for popularity completely captured the affections of 3 fat kind hearted plebs who were dearing her up at a great rate. one of them brought Tim a second supper and were all very kind to us all. this morning we went to Morrissania which is indeed the very abomination of desolation I presume. it is much worse than when you saw it by the accumulated grease, ink, and dirt of all sorts, of three additional years. Cornelia compared it to Mrs Ape’s house but more properly to Glenthorn Castle after the black smiths family had run riot in it for some time. however she seemed very glad to see us and both Gouverneur and herself expressed regret whi[ch] seemed to be real at the shortness of our stay. Cornelia & Septimia are gone to the play and we shall be off at 6 o clock to morrow. Give My love to dear Joseph and kiss my babies for me—God bless you my ever dear child excuse this scrawl which is written with a p most horrid pen and as I am to be up again very early to morrow I must leave you for bed. once more adieu if you direct a letter to Baltimore I may probably get it. remember me most grea gratefully most affectionately to Mrs Coolidg[e] Mrs [. . .] storer Mrs Swett and your father and Uncle, ever your devoted Mother

M Randolph
RC (ViU: Ellen Wayles Randolph Coolidge Correspondence); edge trimmed; addressed: “Mrs J. Coolidge Junr Boston Massachusetts”; endorsed by Coolidge: “May 2. 1828”; with notes by Coolidge: “account of passage from Boston to New York. (See letter of 7. May.) Housekeeping at Morrisania.”