Seward's Menagerie

John Hartwell

Major
Forum Host
Joined
Aug 27, 2011
Location
Central Massachusetts
We all know that Abraham Lincoln was an animal lover, and that the White house was home to cats, dogs, goats, and other livestock. Two of his earliest acquisitions after entering the White House, were a pair of kittens: Tabby and Dixie, a gift from Secretary of State William Seward. Seward, himself had a similar love of animals. Over the years, his home in Auburn, N.Y., was a veritable menagerie: dogs (including among others Snip, a stray spaniel, Neptune, a Newfoundland, and Watchie, a bulldog), numerous cats, canaries (Dickie and Jenny), a pair of parrots, Bob, the mocking-bird, an American Bald Eagle, and Jenny, a tame deer; also a pair of California ponies, and a variety of cows, pigeons, hens, and goldfish. In the family garden are recorded to be buried five dogs, two horses and at least one cat, and probably many more animals, not recorded.

Seward hadn’t visited his Washington residence for a year and a half while campaigning during the 1860 election. Returning to stay after his appointment as Secretary of State, he was delighted to find that “my pretty cat remembered me, and was wild with joy at my return.” Over the next years, she became his inseparable companion, “she attends me constantly, sitting on my shoulder when I write, and following me when I move." I have been unable to learn her name.
 

LoyaltyOfDogs

Sergeant Major
Joined
Aug 8, 2011
Location
Gettysburg area
We all know that Abraham Lincoln was an animal lover, and that the White house was home to cats, dogs, goats, and other livestock. Two of his earliest acquisitions after entering the White House, were a pair of kittens: Tabby and Dixie, a gift from Secretary of State William Seward. Seward, himself had a similar love of animals. Over the years, his home in Auburn, N.Y., was a veritable menagerie: dogs (including among others Snip, a stray spaniel, Neptune, a Newfoundland, and Watchie, a bulldog), numerous cats, canaries (Dickie and Jenny), a pair of parrots, Bob, the mocking-bird, an American Bald Eagle, and Jenny, a tame deer; also a pair of California ponies, and a variety of cows, pigeons, hens, and goldfish. In the family garden are recorded to be buried five dogs, two horses and at least one cat, and probably many more animals, not recorded.

Seward hadn’t visited his Washington residence for a year and a half while campaigning during the 1860 election. Returning to stay after his appointment as Secretary of State, he was delighted to find that “my pretty cat remembered me, and was wild with joy at my return.” Over the next years, she became his inseparable companion, “she attends me constantly, sitting on my shoulder when I write, and following me when I move." I have been unable to learn her name.

Enjoyed your post, @John Hartwell, and it prompted me to see whether the Sewards' home has been preserved. It has indeed and is open to the public as a museum. And if you look at the museum shop page, you'll see several shelves devoted to plush stuffed animals, no doubt in honor of the family's pets: http://sewardhouse.org/shop
 

KansasFreestater

1st Lieutenant
We all know that Abraham Lincoln was an animal lover, and that the White house was home to cats, dogs, goats, and other livestock. Two of his earliest acquisitions after entering the White House, were a pair of kittens: Tabby and Dixie, a gift from Secretary of State William Seward. Seward, himself had a similar love of animals. Over the years, his home in Auburn, N.Y., was a veritable menagerie: dogs (including among others Snip, a stray spaniel, Neptune, a Newfoundland, and Watchie, a bulldog), numerous cats, canaries (Dickie and Jenny), a pair of parrots, Bob, the mocking-bird, an American Bald Eagle, and Jenny, a tame deer; also a pair of California ponies, and a variety of cows, pigeons, hens, and goldfish. In the family garden are recorded to be buried five dogs, two horses and at least one cat, and probably many more animals, not recorded.

Seward hadn’t visited his Washington residence for a year and a half while campaigning during the 1860 election. Returning to stay after his appointment as Secretary of State, he was delighted to find that “my pretty cat remembered me, and was wild with joy at my return.” Over the next years, she became his inseparable companion, “she attends me constantly, sitting on my shoulder when I write, and following me when I move." I have been unable to learn her name.
As if I didn't already have enough of a soft spot for Seward! Such a big-hearted guy.

Thanks so much for sharing this!
 
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