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JQA Diary, volume 41 26 October 1840
JQA Neal Millikan Elections, Presidential (1840) Whig Party
138 Quincy. Monday 26. October 1840.

26. VI: Monday

When I went to bed this morning, a storm of hail was pattering on my windows— I dozed rather than slept through the Night. I was upwards of an hour recovering from the chill with which I went to bed. About 3. in the morning I was awaked by a tremendous long reverberating thunder clap, soon after followed by another— Rising by broad daylight, and looking out of my library windows, the whole surface of the ground as far as sight could range was covered with snow, like Lapland in January, and the snow continued to fall with intermission till near noon.— Charles had intended to go to Boston, but postponed his visit there till Wednesday— In the intenseness of my desire to make progress with my review of the parliamentary document concerning China I lost the day for the diary and it went in arrear— I got entangled with Vattel, and Rayneval upon the Freedom of the Seas; and Bell’s account of the Russian embassy to China in 1719. and th account of Lord Macartney’s embassy in 1792. in Mavor’s collection of Voyages and travels, and Selden’s Hebrew Law of Nature and Nations; but above all the Newspapers swallowed up the daylight, till the dusk, when I went up the hill, and spent an hour at Charles’s, after which he and his wife from 8 to 9 in the Evening were here— I was worn out with multitude of occupation and by 10. retired to bed— The Newspapers are full of the charges of conspiracy of frauds to carry the presidential election, bandied between the two parties at New-York— In these frauds, Governor Seward, Mr Grinnell the member of Congress, a Mr Wetmore of New-York, Mr Swift, now Mayor of Philadelphia, on one side, and Benjamin F. Butler, ex-Attorney-General, of the United States, now District Attorney for the Southern District of New-York, Jesse Hoyt, collector of the customs at that Port, and a man named Edmonds, with many others on both sides are deeply implicated. The explosion began by a clandestine examination before a party judge of a criminal court in New-York, of two worthless characters, named Stevenson, upon hearsay from the other named Ghentworth, charging these distinguished members of the whig party with having imported from Philadelphia in 1838 men to vote and who did vote at the Election in New-York. The tables are now turned, and Ghentworth upon whose expected testimony the whole charge of whig fraud and bribery rested, has made an affidavit, charging Butler and Hoyt, and Edmonds with attempting to bribe him with promises of money and office to accuse Governor Seward, and the whig leaders with these frauds.— This mutual crimination and recrimination is exasperating the parties against each other to such a degree, that there is imminent danger both of fraud and violence at the approaching Presidential Election, which will terminate no otherwise than in civil War and a dissolution of the Union.