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if Soper is not one, hewill see them&
present thematter.Until I knowmore
fullywhatviewsour friends inBatavia
mayhave in regard to theCandidates,
Ididnot thinkbest tosay to them that,
the suggestion for an early call came
from Monroe, nor to name the fact
that you claimed to present a Candi-
date.Youwellknowhowmuchtrouble
there has been heretofore in locating
this nomination, & althoughGenesee
cannotnowpreferaclaim, I knownot
what otherCountiesmay,orwhat are
theopinionsofour friends inBatavia.
I am happy to consider Gen. Bel-
lows my friend. I was with him in Al-
bany in 1832, as an Antimason; met
him inUtica last fall as aWhig, &our
views, I presume, are similar in regard
toSlavery& its remedy. I shall beglad
toseehimnominated,&so faras Inow
know, shall be glad to render any as-
sistance inmy power,&which canbe
donewithpropriety, inbringingabout
that result.As I havebefore remarked,
I amnot sufficiently awareof the real
rights & equities of the various Coun-
ties in regard to this matter, to have
formedanydefiniteopinion in regard
to that,but ifMonroe isentitled to the
Candidate, I should be well pleased
with theoneyouname.
I intend now to be in your City on
the 14th at the Temp. [Temperance]
Convention, & if convenient, will give
youacall.
VeryRespectfully,
YourObt.Servt.,
SethM.Gates”
Seth Gates served two terms in
Congress inWashington.He drafted
the protest signed by theWhigs in
Congress against the annexation of
Texas. He was accused of abusing
his Congressional frankingprivilege
tomail largenumbers of pamphlets
to the South detailing the proceed-
ings of the Anti Slavery Convention.
A Savannah planter was so furious,
thatheoffereda$500 reward for the
delivery of Gates’ body. It was pub-
lished in the
WashingtonGlobe
and
the
Baltimore Enquirer
that Gates
andhiswifehadappeared inchurch
seated with a “Negro,” Reverend
CharlesB.Ray,aMethodist Episcopal
minister fromNewYorkCity.
After serving two terms in Con-
gress, Gates returned to LeRoy and
then in 1843 moved toWarsaw. He
continuedhispoliticalactivism,even
thoughhehad suffered somemedi-
cal disabilities. His home inWarsaw
is thehome to theWarsawHistorical
Society and was placed on the Na-
tional Register in1992.
In 1848, Gates threw his support
behind former president andDem-
ocrat, Martin Van Buren, who was
the Free Soil candidate for presi-
dent.The Free Soilerswhosemotto
was “Free Soil, Free Speech, Free
Labor, and Free Men,” supported
JohnDix for Governor of NewYork,
and SethGates for Lieutenant Gov-
ernor.The Free Soilers lost theelec-
tionandSethGatesgaveuphis law
practice and went into the hard-
warebusiness inWarsaw.He served
as Postmaster of Warsaw, NY from
1861 to1870.
His first wife was Eliza Keyes of
LeRoy and they had seven children.
(She died in LeRoy and is buried in
the Myrtle Street Cemetery.) Seth
and his secondwife, Fanny Parsons,
had five children. His thirdwifewas
the widowed daughter of Col. Na-
thaniel Rochester, the founder of
Rochester New York (and inciden-
tally her father was a slave owner).
One of his sons, Dr. Merrill Edward
Gates,servedasPresidentofRutgers
College in NJ, and Amherst College
inMass.
SethGates wife’s gravestone inMyrtle
Streetcemetery.
From theDeskof
theDirector
This past summer the Historical
Society offered several programs
for kids. The openhearth cooking
class for girls was so popular that
a second class had to be sched-
uled. The other classes included
open hearth cooking with boys, a
carpentry class, and a basket class,
averypopular candledippingand
tinpunching class,aswell as Jell-O
Olympics. The classes were made
possiblewith twogrants andwere
taught by Laura Williams, a fac-
ulty member of Elba High School.
If grants are secured, it is hoped
that similarclasseswillbeavailable
next summer.
A coupleof years ago, it became
evident that the rug in the front
parlor would not survive much
longer. It had been cleaned and
patched about 20 years ago, but
large tears made it a safety issue.
It was decided to replace the rug
with three smaller rugs that canbe
rotated tominimizewear and tear.
Thenew rugshave reallyperkedup
the frontparlor.
It has been announced that a
$12,000 education grant has been
made available through the office
ofSenatorMichaelRanzenhofer.The
grant will be used to develop our
Hands OnHistory programs to bet-
ter meet the new NYS curriculum
andCommonCoreStandards.
Preparations are beingmade for
aChristmasCandleLightTour of Le-
Roy House in early December. The
dateswill be announced soon.Tick-
etswill goon salenextmonth.Dur-
ing the evening you will meet Mrs.
LeRoy’s cook, who is preparing the
familymincemeat recipe,and theLe-
Roychildrenare readingapoem that
Grandpa LeRoy sent them fromNew
York City. Upstairs, the Ingham stu-
dents are talking about goinghome
for theholidaysand themostunusu-
al gas-lit Christmas tree in LeRoy. In
the front parlor you can help make
ornaments and string popcorn for
theChristmasTree. In thebackkitch-
en, enjoy some home-made Christ-
mas cookies and some stories about
what’s for sale in the stores onMain
Street. It will be awonderful time to
remember Christmaspast. Tickets at
$10perperson - $6 for children.
1,2 4,5,6
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