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THE greater part of the following letter was written at intervals, during the summer and autumn of the last year; but a severe indisposition having prevented the author from completing it, he resolved (for reasons which will be obvious to the reader,) to lay aside his work, until after the adjournment of the session of the State Legislature, then about to open. He doubts, however, whether he should even yet have found leisure, or felt the inclination to prepare these sheets for the press, if his adversary had not lately thought it expedient to print and circulate a second edition of the Pamphlet to which they are intended as a Reply.
Albany, August 2d, 1819.
A REPLY, &c.
To CADWALLADER D. COLDEN, Esq.
WHEN your unwarrantable attack on the Report of the Select Committee, upon Mr. Ogden's Memorial, compelled me to step forward in defence of measures for which I felt myself responsible, I was by no means unmindful of the invidious nature of the task. I was aware of the jealousy with which persons invested with exclusive privileges, regard those who scrutinize their claims, and I presumed, that in exact proportion as I should succeed in vindicating the Committee from your aspersions, and in establishing the facts and principles of their Report, I should hazard the resentment of every individual whose interest might be involved in the discussion.
From the part I had already taken in opposition to the powerful association, of which you are the champion, I knew, that I had awakened feelings by no means equivocal in their effects; and from the temper in which you had commenced the controversy, I had reason to conclude, that under whatsoever circumstances I might be driven to engage in it, my motives would be impeached, my opinions reprobated, and my language perverted. Independently of your Memoir, I had formed a previous