Charles W. Morgan - Coope, Virginia T.

Log of Mystic Seaport, Vol. 32, no. 4.(Winter, 1981): 121-128.

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Rodman, daughter of Samuel and Elizabeth Rodman of New Bedford, and it was most important to him to get his accounts settled, resign as a member of the Philadelphia Hose Company, sell some property, and clear the way to go to New Bedford. Charles already had family connections with the Rodmans of New Bedford. His sister Rebecca had married Sarah Rodman's older brother William Rotch Rodman in 1813 and lived there, and another sister, Susan, was to marry Rodman's brother Benjamin.

But Charles found himself in a difficult situation. His uncle Waln seemed unwilling to settle with him, and he poured out his feelings in his diary. "How long will my respect for him permit me to keep myself cool under these repeated disappointments. I cannot get over some old ideas of his consequence to me and near connexion [sic] to our family, but I know those ideal bonds must soon be broken and open enmity declared when he comes to know that I have carried off the prize his son lost [Sarah Rodman], and this must shortly be the case, therefore I wish to get as clear of him as possible, but he seems determined not to let me. Oh how my ideas with respect to him and his family are changed-how I once venerated him. I thought him great and good-now I see the mournful spectacle of a man of strong abilities and sound sense in one way, a man verging toward the grave, yet completely wrapped in the world and engrossed in its cares with no attention towards laying up any treasure in a better country and now having acquired immense wealth he is harrassed [sic] and perplexed continually with business-he has not time to perform his duties even to his fellow creatures, as I am an instance I am sure. Oh wealth thou deluding phantom, may thy glittering splendor never allure me to forsake the path of duty, may thy pursuit never engross my mind, but only occupy it as wisdom directs to obtain subsistence and comfort for those I have around me and shall leave behind me." This seems very perceptive for a young man starting his career.

In January of 1819 he finally got his accounts taken care of and had about $14,000, some stocks, and $4,000 invested in the ship Enterprise. He was finally free to go to New Bedford, where he was married 3 June 1819, in the Old Friends Meeting House.

Soon after arriving in New Bedford, Morgan was made a partner in the town's leading whaling firm, operated by William Rotch Sr. (1734-1828) and Charles's father-in-law Samuel Rodman (1753-1835). Apparently, he began investing in New Bedford whalers in 1820. Possibly by 1821, but certainly by 1824, he was the managing owner of whaleships, and by 1841 had managed fifteen different whaling vessels. He also owned lesser shares in eighteen whalers between 1821 and 1845. Ashore,

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