To Sarah Savage Thatcher

    Philadelphia        24 December 1792

    My dear—

    I wish with all my heart I could have been your partner at your late dance;1 for tho it is not very fashionable for a Gentleman to dance with his wife, yet as it would be so rare a thing for us to be at a dance together, I think this indulgence might very well be allowed us for once—As you once said you were not displeased at hearing of my being unhappy when from home, I can assure you it causes me no uneasiness at being told that you were not perfectly happy at the dance—

    My dear dont anticipate occasions of grief on account of my being absent the ensuing two winters—Remember that many circumstances, more painfull than absence, may detain me at home—sickness at home would be worse than health abroad—And I verily believe it is for my interest, in which you & the family are the first in my thoughts, to continue for two year[s] to come in public Life—You are very much mistaken when you suppose it would mortify my pride to have been droped at the late election2—A man must seek & wish for an appointment chiefly because of the rank & honorable estimation in which it is held by the world, otherwise a disappointment of his wishes will not be a cause of mortifycation—And all my views & objects of happiness demonstrate this was never my case—I never pretended to a very high degree of disinterestedness in any of my conduct, & perhaps lest of all in entering into public Life—My dear family & my books are the immediate sources of all my joy—Did I believe my practice would be as sure a support as my present mode of life I should certainly prefer it notwithstanding the imaginary honor attending an election to Congress—

    You say my dear Lucy has got two teeth, & begins to creep—as I said, in a former Letter, I am afraid the dear little creature will have grown too large for a baby by the time I get home, & have lost the sweet countenance she had when I left her—

    Tell our dear Phillips & Sally they must strive all they can to see how well they can read & behave when I come home3—I expect they will read like schoolars—and behave like a Gentleman & Lady just returned from their Travels—Be particular with them at the Table, and in company—children should know of no difference between company & the common family—

    Inclosed is a twenty dollar Bill, if you can spare one half of it, I wish you to let Docr. [Aaron] Porter, or major [Jeremiah] Hill, have it towards my subscription to the School-house4—I ought to have paid my part before this time—

    I am, my dear, yours—

    [P.S.] I have not mentioned our dear George in this Letter—you must kiss him a thousand times & tell him, the kisses are from his papa—

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    ALS, TFP