815 | From Andrew Oliver

    Rutland, 3d. Decr. 1769


    I wrote your Excelly by two opportunities from Boston under cover to Mr. Abrhm. Dupuis of Grace Church Street acknowledging the receipt of your Letters of 9th. & 19th. of Septembr.1 You would hardly expect to hear from me from this place,2 nor should I now have wrote, but that I neglected doing it before I set out from Boston on the 1st inst. for Hartford, whither I am now going to meet the other Comissrs. on the N. York Line, in order to receive the appeals according to the tenor of our Commission.3

    I could not excuse myself Sr. if I should not communicate to you an anecdote which comes from me at first hand.4 I fell in company with Mr. Cushing & Mr. Adams upon business the Evening that Hall arrivd from London about ten days since, when a Letter was brought into the former from Mr Debert, which the Gentmn_ read to the Company off hand before he had considered the propriety of it: the purport of which was this __ “That if the Province could prove any Acts of Oppression or make out any damages they had sustained by reason thereof against Govr. Bernard, and would send him over a power of Attorney for the purpose; he would, now he was in England, prosecute him for the same”__5

    The other Gentmn. hereupon observd to the Speaker more than once that “he believd this was a private Letter”; but the Cat was now out of the Bag & there was no help for it. I am well satisfied, tho’ I will not be very positive that Mr Cushing replyd, it was directed to him as Speaker: but I am of opinion that if I had not been in company, there would have been no more heard abroad of the Letter.6 This serves to shew Mr Deberts Opinion of the insufficiency of everything they had before sent him: and I have heard that Mr. Bollan has wrote one of his Friends much to that purpose.7

    I could send you some curious Anecdotes concerning Mr. Otis but I imagine you will have them hither from other hands. Doctr. Gardner has not scrupled declaring to one & another, that upon his applying to him to argue a Cause, he told him he could not do it, for his Lungs were gone, nor could he sufficiently collect himself, for he had ruind his Country, but that he had acted with a good intention, & stretching forth his hand, cursed the day on which he was born__ To another person from whom I had it, he said, He wondered what our parsons meant by thanking God for their Existence: for his part he never did nor never would, or never could. He is become the Sport of the young Gentmn. at the Bar, and he was greatly mortified on looking over the Entries this present term of the Supr Court to find he had but 4 when the youngest Quincy had 9 & John Adams had 60__8

    It is remarkable that there have been three untimely deaths among those concerned in running the Sloop Libertys Cargo, viz Captn Marshall the next day, Captn Barnard afterwards drownd at Sea, & Captn. Malcolm since, who I hear said he catchd his death at that time. Should this other Person’s Fate prove as is expected, We might be well enough justified in looking to the hand of Providence in the disposal of these Events__9

    It appears to me that the Party are not well satisfied what will be the issue of things; and that many of your Enemies are softend down[.]10 Mr Wm. Burnet Brown & my Son are with me at Colo. Murrays where we drink your health with great cordiality.11 I am

    Sr. Yor. most obedt hum Servt.

    Andw Oliver

    My Scrawl & my paper both, need your Excuse.

    Sr. Fra: Bernard.

    ALS, RC      BP, 12: 161–164.

    Sir Thomas Bernard. Artist unknown. By permission of Robert Spencer Bernard. Photograph by Charles Crisp, A.B.I.P.P.