W0063 TO [DR.] CALVIN MCQUESTEN from friends Lewis Bailey and P. T. Moulton
Aug 11 1828
To: [Dr.] Calvin McQuesten, Washington, New Hampshire
From: Bowdoin College
My good Friend,1
As Mr. Moulton has the politeness to offer me a whole broadside of his huge family paper, I shall improve the opportunity to say something to you. I had intended to have written to you before, but have delayed it, expecting to send a letter to Bedford by Miss Chander who has been expecting to go next week--next week--for sometime. She will now probably stay until after commencement.
Mr. Orr's health is rapidly declining & it is thought that he will live but a very short time. He has long kept his room & I believe has made his will. I don't know as I can tell you any news, for M. has I believe touched upon everything of importance & in fact I am no news monger. I was glad to hear from you by your letters to Moulton which he let me read. I presume you have a good opportunity for prosecuting your studies, since from your writing you have not many things to direct your attention. But about these girls in Washington you gave a curious account of them to be sure. I should think you might find some that were accomplished & certainly they ought to be patriotic to deserve residence in a town of that name. But perhaps it is as well for a student not to have too many of those bewitching creatures about him, for it is a law of the mind that we cannot contemplate two objects at the same time, & were there many of those female forms, with sleek waists and rudy [sic] faces, flirting before your very eyes your progress in medicine might not be so rapid.
You probably recollect that when you left B. I was with an haemorroidal [sic] tumor. I promised to give you an account of it. Dr. Lushman punctured it on the day that you left, & removed some coagulated blood, it bled but little & became sound in a few days by applying a sauve [sic] containing a large quantity of acetate of lead.
From the circumstance of my being in B. now you will guess that I was disappointed in the Bath school & that is the case. I am now on the look-out for an Academy which I shall keep a year or more according to the income. I have had two or three establishments, but they only give tuition & I have not yet engaged. I am expecting letters this week, which may determine the point. I have read considerable medicine this summer, but lately my attention has been directed to classical studies preparing for my school, if I get one. That Miss Bensen from Boston, is now visiting in Bathe & don't you think that our friend Moulton has been down, I was going to say on purpose to see her, but he says "I did not." However he stayed two nights at least & draws a long breath when speaking of it. O for the charms of women! I wish I know the story about--across the Bridge--say between Bradford & somewhere else. I pity that poor creature if I knew her name. I don't know but out of my regard for the fair sex I should be tempted to write informing her upon this subject.
But I have not told you half. I saw him in the morning of his return--O he looked O! I can't describe how, but he was very extravagant in his processes, & I think she must be a very charming creature. You must bear in mind that Moulton is all the while I am writing this looking over my shoulder--very jealous lest I should say something that should reach H.--I can't say further.
Would you like to hear about our supper at the close of the medical term? We had a splendid time--Drs. Wells & McLean were present. There were 36 of us in the whole. We had no wine nor spirits but plenty of animal--left the hall about 12, after singing a great number of songs. We closed with singing Auld Lang Syne, the whole company standing around the table holding each other by the hand. M.P. Cleaveland is here reading medicine at home.
He requested that I should make his compliments to you when I wrote. I. Plant has left home to pursue his studies in another place--where the girls perhaps, may not be quite so skittish.
I have written so far in great haste & it is now time to close. If you can find out my writing you will do well, please do excuse my mistakes, for I have not time to correct them. I shall not probably attend the lectures here next spring. If you would like to at our house with a steady chum you probably can if you come here. You will perhaps hear from me after I get a school.
[written at bottom of letter]
Respecting what Bailey said of Miss Henrietta Benson--I told him that I had forgotten to mention to you, that she was in this part of the country; and he immediately commenced writing about her. I had to suggest to him every idea he put into part of his letter and I looked over his shoulder to see that he made no mistake. I was laughing in my sleeve all the time to think what a fool I was making of him. He was not aware that you knew of my being acquainted with her except at Bradford. Perhaps if I had not written this now you would have thought that he had become desperately witty, since you were here.
P. T. M. [Moulton]
1 This letter enclosed with W0061 and is formally numbered "0063a."