— Grover Cleveland
Context: I feel as if it were time for me to write to someone who will believe what I write.
I have been for some time in the atmosphere of certain success, so that I have been sure that I should assume the duties of the high office for which I have been named. I have tried hard, in the light of this fact, to appreciate properly the responsibilities that will rest upon me, and they are much, too much underestimated. But the thought that has troubled me is, can I well perform my duties, and in such a manner as to do some good to the people of the State? I know there is room for it, and I know that I am honest and sincere in my desire to do well; but the question is whether I know enough to accomplish what I desire.
The social life which seems to await me has also been a subject of much anxious thought. I have a notion that I can regulate that very much as I desire; and, if I can, I shall spend very little time in the purely ornamental part of the office. In point of fact, I will tell you, first of all others, the policy I intend to adopt, and that is, to make the matter a business engagement between the people of the State and myself, in which the obligation on my side is to perform the duties assigned me with an eye single to the interest of my employers. I shall have no idea of re-election, or any higher political preferment in my head, but be very thankful and happy I can serve one term as the people's Governor.
Letter to his brother Rev. William N. Cleveland (7 November 1882); published in The Writings and Speeches of Grover Cleveland (1892), p. 534.