To Sarah Savage Thatcher

    New York City        29 September 1788

    Dear Sally—

    I have this morning come to a new Resolution respecting my Letters to Correspondents at Biddeford; and in order to lessen their number* and save a little time to myself, as also to add a new motive for friend [Jeremiah] Hill, & perhaps some others, to call the oftner upon you;1 I propose, for the future, to write all the news I can collect, and other circumstances worth communicating, to you—Tho’ I am fond of writing, it is disagreeable to write the same things over and over to different persons, in different Letters—

    I dont mean by this to induce them to omit writing, as often as usual, to me—They may individually communicate various matter to me and each something new, tho I could only tell the same story to each of them—This may further procure you some agreeable amusement—which I wish to effect as much as possible2—But occasionally I shall answer their Letters upon particular subjects—So much by way of introduction—Now for the News—

    On Saturday there met together a number of private Gentlemen of this City and voluntarily subscribed upwards of eight thousand Dollars towards the building an addition to the City-Hall to accommodate the New-Congress3—And this day the work is begun; many hands are employed in collecting materials and laying the foundation—They intend to have it compleatly finished by the first of March, the time of the first meeting of Congress—There is great policy in this—For there may be an attempt on the first meeting of Congress, by some of the middle States, to adjourn to Philadelphia, or some place more central—But there being a general dislike to Philadelphia, the only place where Congress could be accommodated, there is very little probability of their removing to that place—And if then there being shall be convenient Buildings already erected in this City, free of public expence—it will be a sufficient balance to erecting, at public charge, Temporary Buildings, in any other more southern place—so that the people of this City think the probability and be the means of keeping of Congress residing here till a Federal Town shall be agreed upon is sufficient This will be highly beneficial to the City and State—It may also accellerate the Building a federal City—which some politicians think will be productive of the common Good.

    The Legislature of New-Jersey during their last Cession, which was finished on the ninth instant, ceeded to Congress a district of Land not exceeding ten miles square, and powers of exercising Jurisdiction over the same, for the Seat of federal Government—provided it should be agreeable to Congress to make the Seat of empire in that State—But I am of opinion that whenever a permanent seat shall be fixed upon it will be further South than this—Unless Canada, or Nova-Scotia should, by some unaccountable Revolution, before that takes place, join the United States—And even in this case The State of New-York will have as good, & perhaps, better claims for that honour—

    I dont know but this Letter is too long; but such as it is, as to length and matter, you and our friends have it—

    I am, dear Sally, yours. &c

    * number of Letters I write, not correspondents that write to me

    * * *

    FC, TFP