Page:The autobiography of a Pennsylvanian.djvu/158

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occasion while I was Governor a representative of the North American, a worthless sheet published in Philadelphia, came to Pennypacker's Mills to pry into some action of the government supposed to be then in contemplation and asked me for an interview. I had learned by experience that whether I saw him or not an interview would appear in the paper, since the discipline of the office required that something must be brought back in his bag. Therefore, I told him I would give him an interview. He took out his pencil and memorandum book and made ready, and I proceeded:

“Celerity ought to be contempered with cunctation.”

“Won't you please repeat what you said?” he asked.

“Certainly. Celerity ought to be contempered with cunctation.”

“Would you object to spelling that last word for me?”

“Not at all. C-u-n-c-t-a-t-i-o-n.”

He went back to the city, hunted up his dictionary and wrote two or three columns, and the paper has not yet entirely recovered from the shock.

While dabbling occasionally in verse and other forms of literary expression, especially in my young manhood, my chief study, apart from professional activities, has been in the way of historical research. My father set me the example by writing, in 1843, at the request of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, a local history in two