___Fruit trees of all kinds were set out, vegetable and flower gardens were made; in short, he ploughed his money into the land in much the same fashion that a gentleman-farmer does today. When the weather permitted, he went to and from business in his boat, the Ohio; if he made the journey by land, he did it, whenever possible, on foot.
___Tudor's nervous breakdown had taught him the necessity of health, and into the pursuit of it he now threw himself with his customary intensity. "Exercise, exercise, exercise ! " he exclaims, "like action, action, action, to oratory, is to health everything." Wherever his business took him - to the wharf at Charlestown or to Fresh Pond - he walked. At all seasons of the year, when he walked the fifteen miles to Nahant, he noted in his diary the time consumed; occasionally he made the round trip in one day.
" Left town on foot for Nahant with a ball of' twice laid ' fish, a cracker, and a flask of water. Had fine exercise; but as I got to my cottage before dinner I took my fish and potato at my cottage after having it warmed by Mary in a spider. There was nothing cooked today at the cottage; so that my dinner was convenient, simple and enough."
___The records of Tudor's happy occupations at Nahant and of the simple expeditions that he so much enjoyed are frequent and, as might be expected, give scrupulous attention to detail.
May 23, 1826. ...
___I find pleasure in coming to Nahant. It is the pleasure of activity, the employment of various kind of workmen; planting, culture, and making double dories, activity not attended with serious anxieties, the progress of small schemes without any regret for the money which they cost me; why then should I sell or let my cottage? The time is approaching when the place will be filled with idle and empty visitors: an evil from which an escape may be made by taking to my boat, gun, and salt water. It would be pleasant to have a few friends about one; but general acquaintances are at best a sort of necessary evil to rub off the rust which will encrust those who retire absolutely from them.
April 23, 1828. . . .
___Set off at 14 before 9 o'clk and arrived at 5 minutes before 1 o'clk. Returning left at 2 o'clk, dined on great beach, stopping 30 minutes, on a piece of corned beef, a cracker and flask of water, all of which were carried in my pocket, and got back at 6 o'clk; going 4 h. 10 m. returning 4 h. Began to tire on my return on the other side Chelsea Bridge. This walk of 30 miles I have accomplished without straining in 9 3/4 hours. .
(note: His record for speed was made in December, 1829: down in 3 hours, 30 1/2 minutes; back the next day in 3 hours, 31 1/2 minutes. The Boston terminus was the post office.)
Nov. 16th, 1830
. ... I counted at 3 o'clk from my cottage piazza 264 sail in sight at one time. This included the Salem and Marblehead coasters. The sight was splendid in a high degree. The Nahant people said 200 was the highest number they had ever counted at one time before; so great a number at once probably has never been seen before, a variety of circumstances having concurred to collect them in port and after they sailed to detain them together. The wind fell soon almost to a calm or light wind after they got beyond the light. Those which sailed first went against a strong tide, so that when the last followed the tide aided on the ebb to bring all within a space of 15 or 20 miles. The average passenger and crews may have been 8 persons. Therefore there must have been at this estimate 2112 souls in this mercantile fleet. In the same spirit is the note of a trip down Boston harbor.
July 4, 1829
. . . . We beat down as far as Deer Island, caught 20 ton cod and had a chowder and fry made of them, and came back with a wing and wing breeze before night. . . . There are few more pleasant ways of spending a day than to go below, catch your own dinner, cook it and eat it, with a clam shell for a spoon. Other luxury must give way to this. If you would have a zest for dinner, seek for it thus.
___The mention of double dories calls for comment on Tudor's faculties of invention. His interest in contrivances showed itself at an early age. When he was only seventeen, he devised a siphon pump for pumping water from the holds of vessels and drafted a letter to the Royal Society describing it. It would seem that he hardly took it seriously, however, for the sheet on which the letter was written is principally filled with a description of the device in verse, evidently composed for the entertainment of his sisters. His experiment of the Black Swan has already been referred to, and after he began the ice business, he was constantly occupied, as has also been shown, in studying methods of keeping his commodity in large icehouses, and preserving it during transportation and in the homes of the consumers. The double dory consisted of two twenty-foot dories fastened side by side with a space of five feet between them. It excited the wonder of the Lynn fishermen and when under sail gave its occupants a good drenching. At one time he experimented at Nahant with cotton and tobacco; he stocked Fresh Pond with salt-water fish; he was interested in making paper from white-pine wood. In addition, his active mind occupied itself with numerous business projects. He established saltworks at Hull, which were carried on under the direction of his brother Harry; he continued his intermittent search for coal at Gay Head, always with an air of mystery that rendered the adventure highly exciting. The longest sustained of these operations was a graphite mine in Sturbridge, Massachusetts, which had been worked from time to time since 1633. Tudor purchased it about 1828, proposing to use its output for the manufacture of crucibles. All the difficulties, human and material, that usually attend mining operations were encountered in this case. Finally, mention should be made of the fact tliat it was Tudor who introduced the first steam locomotive into New England. In January, 1830, when four bills for railroads were before the legislature, he brought from Charleston a small locomotive of one-half horsepower and a car large enough to carry one passenger. Running on the sidewalk at four miles an hour, the train attracted great attention.
" Steam," he writes, " will soon take the place of horses in ordinary stage coaches and I should not be surprised if it should be employed for heavy draft and ordinary purposes. The times are surcharged with novel inventions and improvements of all kinds. Steam seems now the ordinary power: in all probability some other and more convenient one will be discovered."
___" Love was in the next degree." At the age of forty-seven Frederic Tudor had a brief affair of the heart, the termination of which he records with the remark: " Free life! unwise woman! " A few months later he noted his increase in weight from 130 pounds to 134. But true romance, though it tarried till he was forty-nine, when it arrived, came with all the passion of youth. In the summer of 1833 he fell in love with Euphemia Fenno, a nineteen-year-old girl of Mount Upton, New York, who was visiting in Boston. The love story of two people so far apart in years would arouse interest, no matter what the setting; Frederic Tudor, who had been obliged to restrain his outpourings of heart to the inanimate pages of a diary, rose buoyantly to the opportunity of telling his inmost thoughts and feelings to a living and loving human soul.
___His letters to his lady began almost on the day she left Boston and continued in unbroken sequence, the last being written when he was on his way to the wedding, some five months later. He proposed, with her permission, to extend the trip he was about to make into New York State (for business and health) as far as Mount Upton, near Utica, where she was to be found. But -
He heard nothing from her and concluded that lie must return to Boston without seeing her...
: ..."Thirty years difference. It is too great... thus ends the beautiful dream of an old bachelor. . . . Let us place your short visit to Boston in July, '33, as being a point of felicity in our lives which is to be valued, because all happiness is necessarily short, in this passing scene, in which it is absolutely dangerous to be joyful."
On the stagecoach for Boston he received her delayed letter, but he must continue; then more letters from her. permission to visit her, ecstasy, and prompt appearance at Mount Upton.
..."A very extensive commercial operation to the extent of nearly a million of dollars" hung fire and prompted him to warn her that its failure must delay marriage. " Much as I esteem, respect and love you, I will not offer you myself alone."
He took occasion to enlighten her about his character.
___Having enlarged upon the question of age so fully, and you having all along been willing to be blind upon this point, I can only say I have not deceived you in this respect; and upon the point of my temper and disposition I think you are somewhat deceived; and I would have you to understand I have occasionally a great deal of the sharp and bitter in my composition. This part of me will ill assort with your gentle nature. It is in vain for me to undertake to change it. It is too late. Some sharpness of temper has its advantages, and I attribute to this in part what I have had of success in life. But the common maxim, speak neither well or ill of yourself, stops me here. I should not have ventured at all upon this dangerous ground, if I were not convinced you have seen only the sun-shiny part of my temper and disposition.
___He explained to her the effect upon him of his hard life, from which Robert Gardiner had rescued him, and of the growing unkindness and ingratitude of his mother and sister, which had left him at last without a woman to love and confide in (he was careful to state that, though he " tore them out" of his heart, he still continued his "supplies" to them). For this reason, finally, he pleaded for a secret marriage.
___For yourself too it would be as well to be silent. You do not wish to be asked why you marry a white headed man. I, too, do not wish to be joked upon taking to wife a girl (as will be said) of fourteen. If we have made up our minds to do this thing, it is our own affair, and it will be far better to accomplish it first and let the world add their own comments and notes of admiration afterwards, than to have heartless impertinence talking over what is no business of theirs and about which they really care nothing.
___Of course the marriage must wait upon the successful termination of the commercial operation, and even then he would be so occupied that he would have time only to come and carry her off -
"like a general marrying on the field of battle.... I have now to make you a tender of myself in marriage, and as you should not accept me, or I ask you to do so, unless I have rich means for household matters to back the proposition, I am, as I think, under the necessity of asking a suspension of any decision in the case until the important business I have stated in the first part of my letter, shall be so far favourably determined that I shall be willing myself to proceed. This important bread and cheese part of the business being settled, I shall ask you not to engage yourself to marry me, but to let me know at what early day you will be married. . . . You are not called upon for any decision until I say further and I hope to do that in a very short period. Will you be ready to answer? will you be ready to act?
___This was all very prudent and logical, but it left out of account the possibility that this young woman he loved might, in her love for him, take little account of prudence and logic. Her next letter swept the old bachelor from his moorings. He writes:
___Amongst my business anxieties has been the exciting one of yourself. My letter to you making my proposal placed this matter in the right position. But somehow we have lost sight of all prudential bars and jumped over all impediments of this kind. To retreat I think impossible and to delay equally bad. We are so far enlisted as man and wife, it seems to me to press forward is the duty as well as strong inclination of both. You are to decide. I will go back unmarried if you say so.
___On this occasion my feelings are not to be regarded, your duty to yourself requires you should act with sound discretion. On the other hand your feelings towards me I consider as of sacred importance. I have induced you by a course of sincere and heartfelt attachment to you, to give me your confidence. The confiding attachment of an honest hearted woman is so superiour to that of any man's love that, while the last may be trifled with, the first cannot be.
___These reflections I make in consequence of what you say on the subject, in your otherwise exciting letter of the 20th inst. about " Gold and silver." It is all I can say. I have endeavoured to keep you fully advised, what sort of a man of fortune you would have in me. In this respect I take you to a post of danger. I think I have sufficiently warned you: but you have not heeded the warning. I am intoxicated and cannot tell the road I should follow.
___The return which you make me touches me to the soul. A variety of reasons operate to make my attachment to you one of a most absorbing endearment and very recently these reasons have increased in cogency.
___Under the whole circumstances of my case, I cannot be in a very good condition of health. The unquiet mind is a destroyer. The consideration which you can administer will be of high value in assisting me to bear anxieties of a high order. To have married you, under such circumstances, was the furthest thing from my intention. We have together got into a predicament and the only way, in my opinion, is to carry it bravely and boldly through: let what will come to bless or mar our union.
___Of the marriage which took place on January 2, 1834, it may be said that it was the foundation of happiness for Frederic Tudor (His children were: Euphemia, born in 1837; Frederic, born in 1845; Delia Jarvis, born in 1847; William, born in 1848; Eleanora Elizabeth, born in 1850; Henry, born in 1854).
___In spite of the adjustments needed for such disparity in age, not to mention temperament, he learned that the masterfulness which he practised so successfully in business must be tempered in domestic relations. An enormously long letter written to his wife after seventeen months of married life (she was visiting Mount Upton) sets forth with humorous delight the thousand details incident to keeping house without her and improving the Nahant place for her benefit. He begins:
___Having just despatched a letter to my mistress, it seems to me like a true lover, I ought forthwith to begin another and I give you a challenge to produce another wife tliat has got a husband that does as much. I used to treat Euphemia Fenno with a good deal of Love: but you, rascal, I think of all the time: eating and drinking and sleeping and waking and sitting down and walking about and going over to Charlestown and going to Nahant. Here and there and everywhere. And how long are you going to keep me in such a foolish condition? A man occupied by a woman and that woman a wife - shameful.
___In conclusion he declares that if she does not return soon he will leave Nahant in its state of upheaval and set forth, as she is begging him to do, to fetch her home. One more quotation from his diary belongs here, as showing a side of Tudor's nature that is easily forgotten - his delight in simple things.
___Walked out with Effie who was bright this morning. Passing along the eastern shore of the Pond under the shade of the trees with the South West breeze fanning us, we passed a pleasant hour. The whispering ripple of the lake waters at our feet reminded us of early days and childish days, when such things were full of sweetness and poetry. Time flies as the little ripple of this morning. Let us then fill as much of our time as we can with all the innocent joys within our reach. .
___The business difficulties that had embarrassed Tudor's thoughts and movements during his courtship were the result of a speculation in coffee which he had been carrying on for some time. According to his own account, he had undertaken the venture as a way of bringing him into association with other business men in Boston, the ice trade being of such a special character that it gave no such contact. As a speculative episode it ran true to form: encouraged by initial successes, he bought more and more extensively? prices fell; by the end of the year 1834 he was involved in losses amounting to $210,000. With the assurance gained in his earlier experience, he made arrangements with his creditors for continuing on his own terms.
___It was proposed to me that I should carry on my ice-business, as the agent of the creditors; should restrict and limit my personal expenses to a given sum, etc., etc. To this I objected wholly. I said to the agents," Allow me to proceed, and I will work for you better than I can under any restriction. Give me the largest liberty, and I will pay the whole, in time, with interest." That was agreed.
At the end of the year 1834 Tudor summarized the state of his affairs as follows:
___In the first place the speculation in coffee has totally failed. I bought and sold about 7 million of pounds (there is only about 1/2 million still to be sold) and the loss will reach about $175,000 - that is to say, an income of $10,500 pr. ann. It would have been a matter of utter hopelessness to have met this loss with any expectation of paying it, but the business which has occupied me so long has the past year shot ahead and exceeded all reasonable calculation in its profitable advance. In Havana, in Charleston, S. C., and more especially in New Orleans.
___The increase has exceeded the sum of twenty five thousand dollars for the year, and there is a strong probability the coming year will show a still further increase of another twenty-five thousand dollars, owing to the advanced prosperity of the three communities where the Ice plantations are situated, as the profit this year (the accounts not yet all come in) will exceed for the ice $30,000; real estate in Boston, N. Orleans, and Charleston, S. C., $7,000; Black lead, and other things perhaps $3,000. Altogether this years profit is Forty thousand dollars. To this I confidently expect to add $20,000 next year; which will enable me to pay interest on the coffee debt, live respectably, and lay up a good stock for a sinking fund, or to extinguish one fifth of the debt. The two principal debts will be at 5 pr. ct. interest, which will reduce the annual interest I have to pay for the coffee loss to about $9,000. . . .
___This apparently disastrous coffee speculation, which has ruined its authour, Wm. Savage, has been attended with some good effects in my case. It has invigorated me to efforts in renewal of the expedition to Calcutta, which had nearly been abandoned by me, from laziness; but knowing it could not be continued by Austin, from mere want of knowledge, added to the necessity of making provision for the magnificent mistake I had made in my speculation, set me to work again; and if my man is as good a one as I think, I expect in two years very favourable results to be the consequence.
___I have also, animated by the same motive, been refreshing matters and extending good plans of operations in all the Ice plantations so that they must produce more next than the past year. . . . So ends the year, the plans and the prospects all put down. I can not say with Johnson I am urged to exertion rather by a fear of evil than a hope of reward. I do hope reward, and do expect much future happiness, and I expect it the more because I am happy at this time in despite of the great loss of property which the year has exhibited.
___A man who makes a miscalculation, as is proved by the event of an operation founded upon it, has more regret at the censure which is passed upon his judgement than for the loss of the property which may be sacrificed by such mistake; as an operation founded upon sound mercantile principles, the coffee speculation was correctly planned. But a train of most disadvantageous and adverse circumstances attended it from first to last. I have lost in this speculation four times as much money as my grandfather (who died about forty years ago, noted as a rich man) was worth; and yet I am without other regrets than arises from the condemnation of my judgement and the censure which may be justly cast upon my sober conducting of affairs in going to so great an extent and running so enormous a risk. Although I may find a great variety of reasons to alleviate and lessen the mistake, still I think I should not attempt to escape from this blot and stain upon my judgement upon any other ground than to put against it my other operations in life, which from nothing have produced not only enough to pay all losses, in this one case, but to leave besides, in the prospect, a splendid fortune. I have, then, lost four times as much as my grandfather was worth, dying rich; and if I live six years, shall have an income annually greater than the whole fortune of my progenitor, for which I am indebted to my own exertions.
In spite of Tudor's certainty that he would be rich in six years, the wiping out of his debts under the present conditions was considered by both Tudor and his creditors " almost a forlorn hope." But fortune, as it proved, was on his side to the extent that at the critical juncture he had news of the successful sale of a cargo of ice that he had sent to Calcutta the preceding May. Long since planned, the movement had been executed at precisely the right moment. With the thing done and a good profit to boot, he had the best of evidence with which to urge his creditors that he be allowed to work out his salvation unhindered, paying them in the meantime five and six per cent. Indeed, with the establishment of the Calcutta " plantation," his business passed a significant milestone. The sales, which in 1836 were 12,000 tons, had risen in 1846 to 65,000 tons. The feat of carrying a cargo of ice on a four months' voyage, crossing the equator twice, stirred men's imaginations and greatly increased his prestige; moreover, by providing an article of commerce which could be shipped from Boston to Calcutta, he facilitated the means for a return cargo and thus kept up a trade between the two ports that otherwise would have languished. By the end of 1835 the improvement in his affairs was such that he could again look forward with his old ardor of hope.
___The state of matters in which I am would make many men uncomfortable; but I am not so, for I see with the eye of faith. I am happy at home, and although I do not receive as many flatteries abroad as I could wish, still I enjoy them in the prospect, when my revenue shall be $100,000 per ann., as I expect it will be, in three years; then shall they come and offer " the delicious essence." As I have borne ill-fortune with tolerable courage, I hope I have learned to bear prosperity, should it come, without discontent at not finding more joy in it, with a head calm and collected.
___Thanks to the prosperity of his business in Havana and Calcutta, he was able to ride out undisturbed the panic of 1837. This was not the case, however, with Robert Gardiner, who in 1836 found himself in sore straits. Tudor, trying in vain to borrow money for him in an impossible market, wrote him a number of letters which give a striking picture of the speculative conditions that preceded the crash in the spring of the next year. Here are some of his comments.
June 2, 1836
. . . . Such are my speculations upon prospects. We are somehow to be relieved; it must be by a crash, or inherent strength and the power of a great prosperity in sustaining a wildness and extent of schemes which are in the country without parallel. 30 Rail Roads on new routes granted by one legislature in one sessioni and in the Union 24 Legislatures with the same power and many of them exerting it in the same way. They all come to the cities for money. They go to London for money. To Holland and Hamburgh for money. Is there enough?
June , 1836
. ... To return to our own feet after having settled the national question - I am easy at the moment, but I am remarkably without news, letters, and remittances. I hope everything from the southwest wind, and shall not be needy for 24 days, in which time I ought to receive 8 to $10,000.
___All the N. York papers are publishing that money is easier. It is not true. There may be a slight whirl in the stream; but the very day that it is announced that money is easier all the stocks, all (good and "fancy") are lower. In fact, money is scarce where money is hardly ever wanted. The proof of this is seen in the fall of solid and highly reputed stocks. They have gone lower than ever before for a similar cause in peaceable times. I therefore make up my mind such men as John Parker, P. C. Brooks, and others of the ready money race have empty pockets. It is the part of wisdom to believe the pressure is not yet at its height, for the causes are nearly all still in operation. You say it is overtrading - no; that is the old fashioned and worn out reason. It used to be a good one when [money] was gold and silver; but money being now paper and credit (all the last furnished from abroad) the |use of such means for trade can have not much effect. I should say it " was over enterprise in every direction. Undertaking to do more work than there is hands to do it. Building houses, stores, wharves, cities, digging canals, laying Rail Roads, founding cotton factories, and sinking the labour of the country in all directions where it will not immediately produce corn or tangible personal property. '
___All old plans of responsibility seem to be superseded, and the note of the active man in the midst of danger appears to be preferred to any security which may take time for realizing. Therefore any man who talks against speculation is not so good in these wild times as he who has speculated successfully. Everybody speculates.
___In short, my dear R., things have come to such a pass here that I am told one house has refused to pay upon the ground of the exorbitancy of interest, although entirely solvent on time: but such a plan will not do unless it becomes general and a suspension of specie payments resorted to. I am seriously apprehensive something of this kind will be adopted unless there is relief; but I can see no relief but in extensive bankruptcies; and really it seems to me they are not called for, because prosperous operations have been very general. The state of things daily increases the approach of a crisis in money matters.
___From all this and what I have all along insisted upon, you will be able to judge and make up your mind as to the probability of my being able to effect anything for you here. . . .
___I have now written and said all that I can on this subject. I exceedingly regret I can say so little that is agreeable, or do anything to alleviate more than I have done the inconvenience you suffer. But it may be some consolation to bear in mind you suffer in common with the whole of the active community throughout the United States.
___The friendship of Tudor and Gardiner, after standing the test of a third of a century, with all these family and business involvements, was destined to be broken, and the cause was no more nor less than Tudor's old obsession. By chance, Mrs. Gardiner, in a letter to a member of the family, referred to the fact that the original suggestion for the ice trade came not from Frederic but from William. To Frederic this was an unpardonable offence - dragging into the light of a skeleton which he had kept under lock and key. If it were now brought forth - if it were even mentioned in family correspondence - the legend that he had built up about himself as the sole originator of the business would be shattered. So firmly did he believe in that legend that apparently its destruction would mean to him the loss of his own self-respect. In vain did Gardiner protest that the idea of the ice business in itself was nothing, that William could never have carried it out himself, that the credit belonged entirely to Frederic; the name of Gardiner was stricken from Tudor's books, and communication with the family forbidden. Sound Episcopalian though he was, Tudor possessed an active Puritan sense of the doctrine of retribution, and was quite prepared to forestall the Deity in putting it into effect.
___The most notable instance of his acting on this belief is recorded in what became known as the Havana icehouse controversy. One of his earliest assistants, a young fellow named Damon, taking charge at Havana in 1821 at a dollar and a half a day, and later elevated into partnership, with a small percentage of the profit, found his advancement at Tudor's hands so slow that he seized the first opportunity to take it into his own. It is not hard to imagine Tudor's sense of outrage when, in 1838, he discovered that Damon, renewing their license from the city authorities, had obtained it entirely for himself. Tudor at once went to law, carrying his case to the highest court in Madrid, which finally decided in his favor; but for ten years, from January, 1839, to January, 1849, he was deprived of his most profitable plantation. Meanwhile there was much acrimonious controversy between the litigants, Damon taking mainly to print, and Tudor to correspondence. The most extraordinary of his letters, written on his sixtieth birthday and enclosing a lock of his white hair, consigns Damon to the contempt of posterity when Tudor's biographer shall have painted him for all time as " the betrayer of your master."
___This serious loss of income during the ten-year period naturally delayed Tudor in extinguishing his debts. Moreover, the growth of his business required large investments in land both in southern cities and on the shores of the ponds where ice was cut. Thus it was not till January, 1849, when he was sixty-five years old, that he became a free man. In that month, when he had made his last payment, he addressed a letter to Robert Hooper, agent of the creditors, in which he explained the causes of the delay and justified his course. This statement, published some years later in pamphlet form, under the title Frederic Tudor's letter on the Ice Trade and Payment of Great Losses is important, not only for the facts that it gives about the growth of the business, but also as presenting in his own words a picture of himself in the years when, after long struggle, he had won success and peace. The "delicious essence" was at last his.
___Thus I have used fourteen years of my life, and accomplished the payment, at last, of principal of debt, as before stated, of $210,094.20 . and interest (to close of 1848) of $70,060.39 for a total of $280,154.59 .
___It appears I have paid the claims of 1835, and fully liquidated the sum - principal and interest - of two hundred and eighty thousand dollars; that, having used a large part of the active portion of my life, I enter the period of sixty-five with a good property in real estate, with the business attached to it. I commenced and founded the ice-trade when I was twenty-two years old; and through the great disaster of a great loss in other business, and a great one in Havana in the business itself, I have relieved myself, with no man to say I have been unjust to him, as I hope, as I think, as I believe. . . .
___It is true, I did not expect it would have taken me so long, or that I should have to wade through fourteen years of doubted credit. Perhaps I should not have been willing to have shouldered the load. As it has turned out, there is not a doubt my having gone through this trouble is the source of the swelling extension of the ice-trade; and that I have lived to establish it in the East Indies, where I had for a long time endeavored in vain to extend it. I began this trade in the youthful hopes attendant on the age of twenty-two. I have followed it until I have a head with scarcely a hair which is not white. . . .
___I now begin again my Havana business, of which I have been ten years deprived; the first cargo for which departs tomorrow. But, with respect to the debts of 1834-5, they are now all discharged, principal and interest. I hope those who were my creditors are willing to thank me, and will join with me in the satisfaction I feel in the accomplishment.
___This letter completes Tudor's record of the enterprise to which he devoted his life. He was indeed " inevitably and unavoidably rich "; moreover, he had " redeemed the lost estate of his father "; but his chief satisfaction came from the knowledge that, through his indomitable courage, he had made an important contribution to the prosperity of his native city. With a lively sense of the historic significance of this contribution, he deposited with the Society a copy of his Letter on the Ice-Trade, agreed to its publication in our Proceedings, and welcomed the recognition implied in election to membership.
*Note: Frederic Tudor was elected a Resident Member in January, 1858. He was seventy-four years old, a man of mark in the business world for his achievements. He was the third Tudor on the roll of members, the first having been his father, William Tudor, at whose house the Society was organized on January 24, 1791, and who served as treasurer in the early years of its existence; and the second having been his elder brother William, who was elected in 1816. Tudor's appreciation of the honor done him by the Society expressed itself in an invitation that same year to hold the August meeting at his house at Nahant. Here, at half past eleven in the morning, some thirty-five members assembled; the president, Robert C. Winthrop, referred to the inauguration of the Society at William Tudor's house and spoke of recent meetings at the homes of members. The event of the week had been the exchange of messages by the Atlantic cable between Queen Victoria and President Buchanan, and those present inspected a sample of the cable provided by Edward Everett. The formal exercises were followed by luncheon and the taking of a group photograph, an unusual experience in those days; after which the host escorted his guests over his grounds, explaining the methods by which, beginning thirty-three years before, he had transformed his barren and exposed acres on the highest ground of Nahant into an estate adorned with stately shade trees, fruit trees of all descriptions, vines, and shrubbery. Windbreak fences, in some cases twenty feet high, protected his saplings from the icy blasts, and the South Garden, where he grew his choicest fruit trees, was sheltered by a brick wall laid with interstices. As all this work had been carried out under his own direct supervision - for he had never employed a trained gardener - Tudor displaying his triumphs was offering his guests decidedly unusual entertainment.
One thing remained to be done: to provide for the continuance of the business by infusion of new blood.
" It is becoming something of a wild beast in its strength of growth, and requiring far more care and good management than I have either the will or the ability to give it.... a wild beast ".
Indeed it may have seemed to a man of three score and ten; whereas in 1846 the number of tons of ice shipped had been 65,000, in 1856 the total rose to 146,000, this amount being sent in 363 cargoes to 53 different places in the United States, the West Indies, the East Indies, China, the Philippines, and Australia. Accordingly he took into partnership Charles Henry Minot, who had been a member of the firm of Weld & Minot, and under Minot's guidance the business continued to prosper.
___The last years of Tudor's life possessed all that even he could desire of the " delicious essence." His house on Beacon Street, in which he took great pride, expressed his sense of the dignity and importance of the Tudor family; and at Nahant his name was on the lips of all. Evidences of his benevolent activity were everywhere: roads that he had laid out well shaded with trees, marshes drained, a wharf built, and, finally, an amusement park, Maolis Gardens, one of the first in the country. His grounds were regularly open to visitors, and in the fall, at his cider-making festival, all the inhabitants were made welcome. At church on Sunday, wearing a blue frock coat with brass buttons, he was a conspicuous figure. Thus he continued to the end. He died on February 6,1864, at the age of eighty. Frederic Tudor was a striking example of nineteenth-century individualism in its American form. What he created was the work of his own hand, even as the achievement of an artist is, and, like an artist with a new message, he fought his way to fame sustained only by his belief in himself and by his iron resolution: " I have so willed it" was his motto. The revolution which he brought to pass in the habits of dwellers in the West Indies and in this country has a niche in social history, and the use of ice in the preservation of food and in the treatment of illness owes much to him. Finally, it was the industry developed by him that insured for Boston the maintenance of its foreign trade.
___Basic to his success in a new industry and trade was Tudor's ability to harness the New England climate to serve the needs of man, and this ability depended on a constant and minute study of its caprices. Observation of the weather was with him a matter of business: as the season of cold approached, and as long as it continued, he watched the heavens and noted the thermometer with the sharpest of eyes. Otherwise lie could never have reaped the harvest that gave him his name of " Ice King."
" The frost covers the windows, the wheels creak, the boys run, winter rules, and $50,000 worth of Ice floats for me upon FreshPond."
*Note ___The significance of this extension of Tudor's business is well brought out by Samuel E. Morison in his Maritime History of Massachusetts (Boston, 1921), 282-283: Mr. Tudor and his ice came just in time to preserve Boston's East-India commerce from ruin. Our carrying trade between Calcutta and Europe had declined almost to extinction. A precarious foothold in Bengal was retained by Boston and Salem houses only by importing specie, eked out with " notions " such as spiced Penobscot salmon, cods' tongues and sounds, coarse glassware, sperm candles and Cape Cod Glauber salts. Our importing business from Calcutta had been " cut up by the roots " by the tariff of 1816, as Daniel Webster said; and within a few years the Massachusetts mills were making cotton cloth in sufficient variety to kill all demand for Allabad Emerties, Beerboom Gurrahs, and the like, so extensively imported in Federalist days.
___Between 1836 and 1850 the Boston ice trade was extended to every large port in South America and the Far East. When, at the Court of St. James, Edward Everett met the Persian ambassador, his first words were an appreciation of the benefits of American ice in Persia. For a generation after the Civil War, until cheap artificial ice was invented, this export trade increased and prospered. Not Boston alone, but every New England village with a pond near tidewater, was able to turn this Yankee liability into an asset, through the genius of Frederic Tudor.