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|Title||Letters from the Children of John Perkins Cushing, and to His Wife Marie Louise Cushing|
|Reference||L144, box 1, folder 4|
|Collection||Papers of John Perkins Cushing and Family, 1803-1864|
|Description||The first letter is from Robert Maynard Cushing (the second son of John Perkins Cushing) to his brother William Howard Cushing (the youngest son, who died in 1851, aged 11). The second letter is from Thomas Forbes Cushing (the third son) to his mother. The author of the third and fifth letters, written to Mrs Louisa [sic] Cushing, is illegible. The fourth letter is from Robert Maynard Cushing to his mother.|
|Document Type||Correspondence, Manuscript|
|Keywords||family, friends, church, news, society, children|
John Perkins Cushing (22 April 1878 - 12 April 1862) was a merchant and philanthropist from Boston. Early in his life he became a clerk in the mercantile firm of Perkins and Company, established by his uncles James and Thomas Hannasyd Perkins, for carrying on trade with China and the Pacific Northwest. In 1803, aged 16, he accompanied Ephraim Bumstead, the eldest apprentice in the company, on a voyage to Canton. Bumstead was taken ill and obliged to return home, and Cushing was left to carry on the business in China. He did so well that Thomas H Perkins allowed him to stay in Canton as resident agent. He remained there for nearly thirty years, amassing a colossal fortune. He came back to Boston in 1830, broken in health, and married Mary Louise Gardiner. They had five children. Cushing spent his last decades at their estate outside Boston, contributing to charities and living very modestly despite his huge wealth.
Please note that some of the metadata for this document has been drawn from the Boston Athenaeum catalogue.