Ebenezer Hazard letters  1785-1794
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Collection Scope and Content Note

The Ebenezer Hazard letters consist of 11 letters and 1 legal document of Ebenezer Hazard during his posts as surveyor general of the Continental Post Office through his involvement with the Insurance Company of North America in Philadelphia. These letters offer insight into Hazard's personal and business dealings and reveal the political climate in which he worked.

The first item is an unsigned copied letter to Hazard discussing business matters, likely from Samuel Breese of Shrewsbury, New Jersey (1785). The next 9 letters are from Hazard to Samuel Breese as well as one item addressed to Elizabeth Anderson Breese (1743-1832), the half-sister of Abigail Arthur, Hazard's wife. Hazard's letters are from New York (1785-1788) and Philadelphia (1791-1794). These letters contain detailed descriptions of business and financial dealings, property sales and rentals, and congressional politics. The letters typically conclude with discussion of family health and activities.

Hazard mentioned the challenges of drafting the new Constitution in his letter of August 14, 1788. He wrote, "I wish the new Constitution was set to work. It is said North Carolina has rejected it 176 against 76: -if they have it is the worst Day’s work they ever did." The letter dated December 7, 1788, discusses a conflict at Hazard’s Presbyterian Church in New York, where two factions of the congregation struggled to settle on a minister. Hazard sent the unsuccessful candidate, Jedidiah Morse, to visit Samuel Breese. Morse later married Breese's daughter, Elizabeth Ann. In the letter to Elizabeth Breese, Hazard announced the birth of a son, Ebenezer Gordon Hazard, who died just one month later (September 29, 1792).

The collection contains one legal document, which is a transfer of land from Hazard to Samuel Breese (September 29, 1792).

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