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Helen Hunt Jackson 2-1-10 transcription

Helen Hunt Jackson Papers, Part 2, Ms 0156, Box 1, Folder 10, two letters from E.B. Hunt to the Palmers, 1852.
Transcribed by Gloria Helmuth, September, 2006.

Worthington, Sept 20. 1852
Monday Morning

Will you be my confederate, dear Lucy, in a matter not treasonable but quite the reverse? I shall assume an affirmative answer. Well, then, the truth is I want the benefit of your counsel in selecting an appropriate wedding present for Helen. I cannot quite satisfy myself with anything I have yet thought of. A neat watch & chain would be my first choice, but as she is already supplied, that is out of the question. The next best thing & what I have most thought of getting, is a pair of bracelets with a diamond cross or rosette. I have rather thought since that a simple diamond cross, fitted for a pin, would be the most chaste & beautiful. I shall think it right to limit its cost to from $125. to $150. & this will be better bestowed I think on a simple cross than on a cross & bracelets. Could I spend some time in looking around in N. York & Boston, I might possibly find something better, but I shall be quite limited in these opportunities.

Now perhaps you know or can find out some particular fancy of Helen's for something which I could appropriately give, & if so I should delight to know of it & to give her a pleasant surprise. And as you are to go with her to New York, you may there hit on some particular thing which will just meet my want. Or perhaps you may find something just right in Boston. In either case you might arrange so that I could procure it on going North, in case I liked it, as I surely should if I thought it would particularly please Helen.

Now you have the whole case I believe, & will know just how to help me satisfy myself. As to cost, I do not wish to lavish too much on ornament, but if anything peculiarly desirable should present itself, meeting intrinsic value & special fitness, I should not object to it costing $200.

I shall trust most profoundly in your discretion & sagacity to help my choice, & when you can tell me anything on this matter you will "post me up" so can I proceed knowingly. Besides, if I omit or forget or need to know anything important in my present circumstances, I will be truly obliged if you will let me know of my shortcomings - Or anything else you may want to say. I shall be very glad to hear. Meantime believe me as I am,

Truly your Friend.

E. B. H.

Miss Lucy Palmer
Hunts Hollow
Nov 5, 1852. Friday Eve. 8

Dear Mr. & Mrs. Palmer,

Having at last become healthful master of sufficient time to write you as I have desired ever since leaving your hospitable house, that pleasant duty shall be no more delayed. On reaching Albany prudence required me to give up for a time to my bilious troubles & I was scarcely in condition to write before leaving that refuge. And now that I am looking back after a week's interval to the hours spent beneath your roof & the events which there transpired, I feel that necessity alone could induce so long a delay in acknowledging my grateful sense of the many kindnesses which have marked my entire acquaintance with you. You rise to my memory as essential & ever delightful parts of the scenes dearest to my affections. Though a train of chances brought us together at first, I feel sure that a positive bond of sympathy & appreciation now unites us, such as time alone will not weaken or change. Nothing has occurred in all my acquaintance with you in the least to abate the sincere regard which could not but follow the succession of happy hours to which yourselves & your family so essentially contributed. Besides all that on this account I feel to be your due, as it is my spontaneous offering, I cannot but feel that in all you have done for Helen, during the period of your protective relation, you have been accumulating a burden of grateful obligation, which I daily more appreciate & acknowledge. To her I am to owe very much of my earthly happiness as each day proves; so must I feel as a benefit to me now, whatever has been of benefit to her in the past.

The occasions presented during my Boston visits for becoming acquainted with yourselves & family, have been highly prized by me, & have left the abiding impression that all future opportunities of that nature will but promote my friendly interest & regard for your home circle. I much lament that the barrier of distance is to obstruct friendly interchanges, but I have a sure faith that the future will befriend us & I know that no opportunity will be unimproved to perpetuate & extend my friendship.

A peculiar halo seems to gild the week which gave me Helen for my bride & the ground on which that halo is spread is your house & household. But I will no longer dwell on these happy & grateful memories, being confident that you fully recognize my sincere interest & regard for yourselves & my proper appreciation of all the scenes in my life to which you have contributed; So with the assurance of one thoroughly confident & sincere, I now call myself truly & ever

Your Friend.

E. B. Hunt.

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