Collinsville, Conn., Aug. 27, 1857.
Dear Sir, — Yours of the 14th instant came to hand last Saturday. In regard to those articles, I have to say that I commenced the whole number; have all the handles well seasoned, the ferules and guards, screws, etc., and have some over five hundred of them ground, but not hearing anything further from you, I have let them rest until such times as you can make your arrangements. I thought I would not make any further outlay upon them, at least until I heard from you. I did not know but things would take such a turn in Kansas that they would not be needed. Of this you can judge better than I can. I did not feel able to bear the loss of having them left on my hands after I had finished them up, as you are aware that we did not expect much profit on the manufacture of the articles; but I am not disposed to cast the least blame upon you. I very well know that when a man is depending upon the public for money he is very liable to be disappointed, and I judge from the tenor of your letter that you will not blame me for stopping them, as I had used up the funds. I therefore wait your further orders whether to finish them up or to let them rest where they are. Don't give yourself any uneasiness about the affair, for if I go no further with them, I shall lose nothing, or but little; and I have no doubt you and I can make the matter satisfactory in some way. Your son (Oliver) is in the village, but is not now at work for me. My work in the shop was too hard for him in the hot weather, and he has been out at having. I think he may get some job in the shop soon. Let me hear from you when convenient.
Very respectfully yours,
SOURCE: Franklin B. Sanborn, The Life and Letters of John Brown, p. 378