Friendship with Thomas Paine
[A letter written from Philadelphia, 27 September,
Dear Sir, Your kind Congratulations on my safe Return give me a great
deal of Pleasure; for I have always valu'd your Friendship.
The Ease and Rest you wish me to enjoy for the Remainder of my Days,
is certainly what is most proper for me, what I long wish'd for, and
what I propos'd to myself in resigning my late Employment; But it is
what I find I am not likely to obtain: For my Fellow Citizens having
in a considerable Body express'd their Desire that I would still take
a Post in their publick Councils, assuring me it was the unanimous
Wish of the different Parties that divide the State, from an Opinion
that I might find some means of reconciling them; I had not sufficient
Firmness to refuse their Request of Permitting their Voting for me as
a Councellor at the insuing Election. Tho' I apprehend they expect too
much of me, and that without doing the Good propos'd, I shall find
myself engag'd again in Business more troublesome than that I have
As to my Health, of which you kindly desire some Information, it is
as well as at my Age can reasonably be expected. I have the Stone
indeed and sometimes the Gout, but the Pain from the Stone is hitherto
not very severe; and there are in the world so many worse Maladies to
which Human Nature is subject, that I ought to be content with the
moderate Share allotted me.
Be assured, my dear Friend, that instead of Repenting that I was your
Introducer into America, I value my self on the Share I had in
procuring for it the Acquisition of so useful and valuable a Citizen.
I shall be very glad to see you when you happen to be again at
Philadelphia, being with sincere Esteem and Affection, Dear Sir, Your
most obedient and most humble Servant.