John McClintock to Edgar B. Wakeman, June 16, 1847

    Source citation
    George R. Crooks, The Life and Letters of the Rev. John M'Clintock, D.D., LL.D., Late President of Drew Theological Seminary (New York: Nelson & Phillips, 1876), 175-177.
    Recipient (to)
    Wakeman, Edgar B.
    Date Certainty
    LeAnn Fawver, Dickinson College
    Adapted by Don Sailer, Dickinson College
    The following transcript has been adapted from The Life and Letters of the Rev. John M'Clintock, D.D., LL.D., Late President of Drew Theological Seminary (1876).

    CARLISLE, June 16,1847.

    I don't know how you got the notion that Caroline took sick about this riot business; but you were never more mistaken. It did not trouble her in that way at all. She has entirely too much substance to give up in that fashion.

    I think you are pretty well aware of the state of facts here. All the faculty and all the students, northern and southern, are with me. The substantial middle class of the town are with me. The upper crust and the rabble are with the slaveholders. The former have too much fellowship with the aristocracy of slavemasters not to be on their side: the latter, as usual, try to keep up a depth lower than their own, and the blacks serve that end. The indictment will run against me along with twenty or twenty-five other negroes, and will go so before the grand jury, who may ignore the bill in my case if they choose. But that is not likely, as some of the fellows will swear awfully-so that I shall have to meet the matter in court, August 25. Then I shall be tried with all the blacks-though it seems strange law to me if I cannot have a separate trial. But of all that in its time. The slaveowners have gathered up all the evidence they could here in the shape of depositions, and published it with variations and ornaments in "The Hagerstown Torchlight." I have since received Maryland and Virginia papers which refuse to copy from "The Torchlight," stating their disbelief of the yarn. But if they swear to all that is in that paper they will commit fearful perjury, and will probably convict your humble servant, and give him some thousand dollars fine and costs, with a year in the penitentiary. Moreover, the slavemen are gathering their witnesses with a view to suit in the Circuit Court of the United States, and if I am cast here, they will push it there. But I don't think they will attempt it if the grand jury ignore the bill, or I am acquitted. So now, I reckon, you know as much as I do.

    Let the thing go as it may, I have nothing wherewith to accuse myself. In any issue it cannot but do good; and so I thank God and take courage. It may embarrass my purse for some years, but, if my health and strength continue, I have no fears on that score. And my friends have stood by me like wax-all that I have deemed to be my friends.

    The southern trustees will probably come up boiling with wrath, to have me expelled. Bless their dear hearts! they need not trouble themselves. I am ready enough to go any minute of the year; nay, I shall clap my hands with joy to get rid of all these petty vexations and annoyances. In case I leave this fall, I shall ask you to board us until spring, whichever you may find most agreeable-always provided I am not in limbo.

    Mr. E. B. WAKEMAN

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