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David A. Sherman letter

Identifier: MM.2020.026

Scope and Contents

David A. Sherman the first president of East Tennessee College (later University of Tennessee), principal of Hampden-Sydney Academy. ALS. Knoxville, 20 January 1817. Address panel present with manuscript “Knoxville, T./20 January 1817” postmark and manuscript “25” rate. Addressed to Gen. Hezekiah Howe in New Haven, CT.

At the time of this writing, Sherman was at Hampden-Sydney. The letter is an order for books for the academy (244 books). Sherman also makes comments on Knoxville “... There is no regular bookstore here, but almost every merchant keeps some books. There is in the place, a considerable supply of some of the most common books; which is the reason that the Dr. has not ordered more ... As to myself, I have been very highly gratified with the opportunity of traversing so large a part of the union, and seeing so much that was new to me, on my way here. I have thus far found no cause for regret in having changed my situation. The means of subsistence, as might be expected of, are much more easily obtained here, than in New England; but the state of society is much inferior. There is, of course, a wide field for useful exertion, tho the state of things appears to be gradually improving. I am experimentally convinced that travelling has a tendency to remove prejudices. I feel much more respect for the character of our southern and western ‘brethren’ than before my journey, and convinced, that tho there many things in that character to lament, yet we have been too much in the habit of contemplating only the worst side of it. The State of Virginia in particular, has many things in it highly deserving of respect.”

Gen. Hezekiah Howe was a veteran of the Revolutionary War and later a book dealer in New Haven, in partnership with three others at different times. He docketed the address sheet on p. 4 of the letter. John Crozier was the postmaster in Knoxville in 1817, and the postmark and rate are in his hand.

--from George Webb description


  • 1817

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Repository Details

Part of the Calvin M. McClung Historical Collection Repository

601 S Gay Street
3rd floor
Knoxville Tennessee 37902 United States