The Papers of Joseph Henry


26. TO CHARLES COFFIN JEWETT

My dear Sir. Your letter[1] was received a few days ago, while I was in Washington, but at that time I was so much engaged in matters of the highest importance to the institution, with which we are connected, that I could not find a moment of time in which to answer it. I am very desirous of having a long and free talk with you on the subject of the Smithsonian Institution; we have embarked together on a perilous voyage and unless the ship is managed with caution and the officers are of the same mind and determined to pull together we shall be in danger of shipwreck.
I was much pleased to receive your proposition of meeting and if you can make it convenient, you will oblige me very much by coming to Princeton. I have returned to this place to remain some time in order to finish my course to the present senior class and with the exception of a short occasional visit to Washington I shall remain here until June. . . .[2]
I was also much pleased to have had an interview with you at Washington,[3] because though I nominated you as the preference of the majority of the Board of Regents, yet as to you personally I had no objection and indeed you were the only candidate with whom I had any acquaintance.

With much respect I remain truly yours

Joseph Henry.
Professor Jewett.
Mary Henry Copy, Henry Papers, Smithsonian Archives. Reply: April 12, 1847, General Manuscripts Collection, Department of Special Collections, University of Pennsylvania Libraries.
    [1] Of March 16, 1847, General Manuscripts Collection, Department of Special Collections, University of Pennsylvania Libraries. In it, Jewett expressed his surprise at being elected and the hope that Henry "will not have reason to regret the nomination," promised his "cordial cooperation," and suggested a meeting in New York to discuss "topics, connected with the duties of my office."
    [2] In his reply, Jewett wrote that he would be in Princeton on April 15. There is no documentation of a meeting. However, Henry was in Princeton on that date, having returned to Princeton from Washington on the fourteenth. Henry to James Henry, April 15, 1847, Family Correspondence, Henry Papers, Smithsonian Archives.
    [3] Henry Papers, 6:617, 618n.
    [A] According to Jewett's reply, the outgoing copy was dated March 24.