American Presidents

Grover Cleveland

Grover Cleveland

Working in the offices of Rogers, Bowen and Rogers, Cleveland writes to his recently married sister Mary Cleveland Hoyt.

Buffalo, October 18, 1855

To Mary Cleveland Hoyt:

I have had but one letter in (I think) two weeks. I am a favorite with all. my friends, ain't I? But I don't care much and every day I am growing more regardless of little things- like letter writing, receiving, etc.
I have laid Blackstone aside for a few minutes, for I don't feel like study this afternoon, and I do feel like writing to some of my friends. I believe I don't owe any of them a letter, but you know that doesn't make much difference with me.

I suppose by this time you are fairly under way in your new responsibility as housekeeper. How does it go? I don't doubt but that you win make a model housewife. Aunt and Uncle have gone West, but we expect them back in a few days. We have had quite a party of 'young folks at home.' I am trying to find a place to board in the city, but am so far unsuccessful. I have to work pretty hard just at present, as the senior clerk is absent. But it is better for me, as the more I do the more I learn. As you say. I find oftentimes 'Jordan a hard road to travel,' but for the most part feel pretty well encouraged. I think and hope that I shall have no trouble, that is, any more than is the unavoidable concomitant of poverty.

I have had but one letter in (I think) two weeks. I am a favorite with all. my friends, ain't I? But I don't care much and every day I am growing more regardless of little things - like letter-writing, receiving, etc.

My employers are very kind to me and promise me promotion again soon. They at present pay my board or an equivalent, which is very satisfactory. How is little - what's-his-name - the boy? When I get to be an old lawyer and he wants to study the profession I'll take him in my office - then you need not thank me - I'll do it with the greatest pleasure. Consider that a fixed arrangement.

If you see 'that feller' (you know who) just tell him I've got my eye on him -he'd better look out how he performs. But here! I haven't made any wishes in your behalf as housekeeper, have I?

Accept (Mrs. Hoyt) my sincere and heartfelt wishes for entire success in your capacity as housekeeper. May your heart and bread be always light and your purse always heavy. May your tea be always strong and your butter always mild. May your husband be sociable but your baby be dumb. May rats, company, and trouble be scarce and comfort and quiet plenty. And last and most important - next summer (when I come up there) may you have a spare room with an extra bed in it. May you have a big table with an extra plate on it. May you have a nice garden with lots of 'stuff' in it. And welcome your friends to stay and enjoy it.

Louise says Charley Hoyt is going to Chicago to live.

Now, Mary, I spun off quite a yarn, although I haven't got off much either. I am a regular chatterbox, ain't I? I'm going to see about my boarding-place tonight. You must write to me soon, won't you? I am quite ashamed that I can't write you a better letter, but you'll have to take it for better or for worse. Remember me to Will.

Grover Cleveland

[The above letter is reproduced exactly as written and was obtained through the archives at the Library of Congress]

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