My own son tries to murder me.
Settling down in Maine-Henry’s
health-tour through the
south-secession times-December in new Orleans-up the
Mississippi-leaving Henry in Massachusetts-back in Maine
again-return to Boston-profitable horse trading-plenty of money-my
first wife’s children-how they had been brought up-A barefaced
robbery-attempt to blackmail me-my son tries to rob and kill me-my
rescue-last of the young man.
Where to go, not what to do, was the next question. Wherever I might go and establish myself, if only for a few days, or a few weeks, I was sure to have almost immediately plenty of patients and customers enough for my medicines-this had been my experience always-and unfortunately for me, I was almost equally sure to get into some difficulty from which escape was not always easy. Looking over the whole ground for a fresh start in business, it seemed to me that Maine was the most favorable place. Whenever I had been there I had done well; it was one of the very few States I had lived in where I had not been in jail or in prison; nor had I been married there, though the Biddeford widow did her best to wed me, and it is not her fault that she did not succeed in doing it.
To Maine, then, I went, settling down in Augusta, and remaining there four months, during which time I had as much as I could possibly attend to, and laid by a very considerable sum of money. While I was there I heard the most unfavorable reports with regard to the health of my eldest son Henry. Prison life at Trenton had broken him down in body as well as in spirit, and he had been ill, some of the time seriously, nearly all the time since he went to Unadilla. The fact that he was entirely innocent of the offence for which he was imprisoned, preyed upon his mind, and with the worst results. As these stories reached me from week to week, I became anxious and even alarmed about him, and at last I left my lucrative business in Augusta and went to New York. I could not well go to Unadilla to visit Henry without seeing his mother, whom I had no desire to see; so I sent for him to come to me in the city if was able to do so. I knew that if medicine or medical attendance would benefit him, I should be able to help him.