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[39]

In a pathetic letter to her daughter she contrasts the happiness of her early life with the sorrows which later years have brought her:

‘At an early period of life I was surrounded with every 1 comfort that was necessary, nurtured with peculiar care and tenderness in the bosom of parental affection, blessed with the friendship of an extensive acquaintance, and beloved by all my relations. I had enough to attach me to this world. Gay and thoughtless, vain and wild, I looked forward for nothing but pleasure and happiness, but alas! have not my subsequent years taught me that all was visionary? How has the rude blast of misfortunes burst over my head, and had it not been for an overruling Providence, I must have sunk under their pressure. I was taught to see that all my dreams of happiness in this life were chimerical; the efforts we make here are all of them imbecility in themselves and illusive, but religion is perennial. It fortifies the mind to support trouble, elevates the affections of the heart, and its perpetuity has no end.’

Anxious to see Elizabeth settled in a good home before she herself should pass away, her mother sent for the little girl, then only twelve years old, and scarcely less reluctant to leave her Newburyport friends than Lloyd had been. She made the voyage to Baltimore without any friend accompanying her, and for the next two years was with or near her mother, assisting in the care of the latter during her more severe illnesses, and at one time ‘going to live in the capacity of a servant with a very worthy woman.’ She was a remarkably sweet, affectionate, and conscientious child, with a deep spiritual nature, and readily imbibed her mother's strong religious feelings. When, immediately on her arrival in Baltimore, she was prostrated by a severe illness from which recovery seemed impossible, she faced death with remarkable composure, comforted her distracted mother, sent cheerful messages to her brother and other friends, ‘prayed most sweetly, to the admiration of ministers and people that visited her,’ and joined her feeble voice with theirs in singing a consoling hymn.

1 Ms., May 24, 1820.

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