Elizabeth, Letter 1-010: To Dr. Richard Bayley

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Author: Elisabeth Ann Bailey Seton .
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New York 13th February 1797

My Father

This is to intreat and implore you to smile on me when we meet, and not to punish me with the well merited reproof my Conscience has prepared for me. as an Apology is useless when the person who is to offer it is convinced of the fault committed, and as it often occasions embarrassment and additional error, I hope you will admit in its place the plain Truth, that I am well My Husband better my Son and Daughter1 Admirable etc. etc.—that the most pleasant day I have yet experienced or anticipate in this month of February is the one which will return you to me, a circumstance very generally wished, but most particularly by your very affectionate Daughter E.A.Seton

The Soap Boilers and Tallow chandlers talk of petitioning the Leg­islature for a removal of the Health Officer2

  1. Anna Maria Seton and William Seton (1796-1868), He was born November 25 and was the oldest son of Elizabeth Bayley and William Magee Seton. He attended both Georgetown College in Washington. DE., and St. Mary’s College in Baltimore and was among the first students at Mount St. Mary’s College, Enimitsburg. From 1815 to 1817. he learned mercantile procedures under the tutelage of the Filiechi family in Leghorn, Italy. He served in the United States Navy (1818-18341 and married (1832) Emily Prime (1804-1854), the daughter of a New York banker. They had nine children of whom seven lived. He led the life of a country gentleman, dividing his time between travel and residence at his wife’s beautiful estate, Cragdon, in Westchester County. New York. He and some members of his family arc buried in the old cemetery at Mount St. Mary’s near the entrance to the present National Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes.
  2. Dr. Richard Bayley, health officer of the newly created Board of Health Commissioners, was responsible For public health issues. In 1797 the powers of the Health Office commissioners were strengthened by conferring on them the right to make ordinances for cleaning the city. Standing water and sewage in the streets where the soap and candle makers worked were the objects of part of their attempts to clean up the streets.

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