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1839 - BOSTON, Mass. A most unusual 19th century manuscript journal kept by a 'club' of four young men


BOSTON, Mass. A most unusual 19th century manuscript journal kept by four young men who style themselves the 'Four Associates', and keep detailed reports of their meetings in 'mock' committee style, with formal addresses, signatures, mock indignation & insults, &c. It is in fact a very lively account of their shared lives, loves 'girls again!', work, and aspirations. It covers the period November 12th, 1839, to October 2nd 1840, with entries for most days, and ending with a farewell address - "My friends I leave you soon perhaps never to see you again..." 133 pages, bound in contemporary calf backed marbled boards. Spine and corners worn, and boards loose but still attached. Internally in good condition. 4to. 205mm x 162mm. 1839. The four men lodged at No 1, 13 Endicott Street, which is in the North End area of Boston, near the intersection with Blackstone Street. Their names, recorded at the end, are Samuel Carleton, Charles Rice, John Vreeland, James Langley, and they note the number of pages each of them wrote. Boston directories record a John Vreeland as a pocketbook maker, and Samuel Carleton employed as a furniture maker at Nathan Metcalf and Co. James Langley appears to have worked in the thread and hosiery trade, but there are too many Charles Rices to identify his occupation. The inaugural meeting held on November 12th, 1839 "was spent in social conversation on love, Latin and war." The following day one of the group turned 21 and treated the others to almonds and raisons which "would have been better if he had sent home two or three bottles of champagne, but we will excuse him on account of its being the first time that he has seen the age mentioned..." Evenings are spent in conversation with friends, some who add entries - "Sense, sobriety and chastity are qualities which would highly adorn the officers of this institution, did they but possess it." - "As for the girls I do not think I have any more to do with them than a great many others. I have not as yet found the one I want & so I think I have a right to be in their company until I find her..." Local events are mentioned - "Who is the man that struck Billy Patterson? Who is delivering the most interesting course of lectures that was ever delivered in this City? Who tried to cut out a certain gentleman that is now attending a course of lectures at the Odeon? "