Click here to return to the Tutt Library Home Page
Helen Hunt Jackson 5-1-5 transcription

Helen Hunt Jackson Papers, Part 5, Ms 0351, Box 1, Folder 5, letters from Henry Root to HHJ, 1851-1855 and not dated.
Transcribed by Polly Longsworth, 2002.

HR to HMF New York Sat. Dec 27/51 (50?)

I received yr. note, my dear friend in due season, on Thursday evening, and although much pleased at it's reception was quite sorry to find that the "newspaper note" was not its companion; why did you retain it? perhaps I shall claim it yet -

I was as much surprized, as I was delighted, Helen, by yr. kind invitation. I thought, at first, it w'ld be utterly impossible for me to accept it, since my arrangements had been completed to be at home on next Tuesday even; but, by the exercise of some ingenuity, I have succeeded in so changing my plans, as to effect my object - and am now hoping to see you sometime on Tuesday next, & enjoy a long ride with yr. sister on Wednesday morning; all this is, of course, at the mercy of those "railroad accidents" to wh- you so revengefully alluded -

I am reading now "Dream Life"; Ik Marvel's new work; I don't know what it really is, for I havent gone far in it yet; nor is this the place to read it; I shall save it till I get back to Amherst; for it will speak to me much more eloquently in my cosy room, than in this crowded city -

I saw Mr. Dickinson (the Tutor's bro.) at Grace Church on Christmas morning, and a young lady, whom I thought was yrself; I presume I need not inform you that I was mistaken.

Just as I was starting for N. York I saw upon the platform at the Depot, a box, waithing with me for the cars, and directed to a Miss. ____ - at the Young Ladies Institute in Pittsfield; a Christmas present, I presume - I thought of Helen Tufts, & reurned to send her my card, by tuckig it in nder the directory; I wonder if she has rec'd it yet. I wanted to engrave upon it the memorable words of the venerable "Grandpa"; but I ha'dnt the courage; & i hardly thought she'd like the idea of being the recipient of the whole family's exclusive affection, whatever might be her peculiar relationship to the star thereof; -

But I must bring this to a close; another letter to write before the mail goes out -

Receive my thanks, Helen, for yr kind invitation, & believe me, hoping soon to see you soon, as ever -

Sincerely yr's.
Henry -

P.S. I am very sorry I have made a "half enemy" in A. I hope I shall be able to reverse the unjust impression -
H. D. R.

HR to HMF [undated]

Amherst - Tuesday Eve -

It isn't politeness, my dear friend, (as believe I told you in the first letter I ever wrote you) it isn't politeness, which makes me write to you to-night; I write just because I want to thank you for that real good, long, kind letter Mr. Carter handed me to night - Helen, how did you know I was blue? for I see I may has well own it at once; how did you detect it so readily? Did I write out my very blueness in that letter? did I picture my very features in those sheets, wh- you always read so readily (I mean the features, not the sheets)? or was it owing to that keenness of penetration, that readiness of clear perception, so peculiar to yr. sex, & so peculiarly peculiar to yrself? Now that used to master me, & let you at once right into my heart - I never dare conceal anything from you at all; for I'm constantly conscious that you can know just what I am thinking about all the while - My face was always a perfect heart-window to my friends eyes; either because they are so fully my friends that they attain that mysterious, intuitive knowledge of me, which always characterizes the best friendships or because I am so unfortunately transparent that every body sees myself in my face - However, whatever may be the reason, I always feel as if you, & my sister, and - I don't know of any one else, who has, but I always feel as if you had a thorough acquain-tance with my whole self, from barely seeing me - And, my dear friend, you were just right - I was feeling pretty badly just then, and have been for a few days, but its nearly over now, and yr. good letter has done me so much good - it was just what was wanted & just what I didnt expect - & so good was it that I thought to thank you for it, even if I did no more to night, w'd make me feel better - & it has; so, since I have accomplished my object, I will stop; for you must know I am very busy just now; going to give a Lyceum Lecture next Monday night at North Amherst; whew! isn't that large? Subject - Genius! whew - en what do you think of that? - & so, since I am pretty busy, as I said, I determined to just write you my honest, plain-spoken thanks, my dear friend, & then bid you good night - & I defy all yr. feminine penetration to detect any thing but honesty in what I have written; any thing but the honest, hearty, gratitude of yr. warm, true friend - so, Helen, dont burn this letter just yet, but believe me as ever, sincerely yrs, in the warmest truest friendship I know anything about -
"Good night," my dear friend, & very pleasant dreams to you -
Thursday evening has come, Helen,
& with it the deffered (sic) pleasure of talking a little while - How I wish I cl'd see you to-night; how many things I sh'd have to talk about; things I never can talk about in a letter. How many such subjects there are - subjects you can easily speak of when with a friend, but wh seem so "stale, flat & unprofitable," when formally set down in black & white -.........

Speaking of studying character reminds me - It seems you have that same dread of hearing yr. friends criticised wh- I spoke of in my last - Well, perhaps I am peculiar; but I seldom feel it - Perhaps it is wrong; I am disposed to think it is - but still I think it can be partly accounted for in my own case. I have had very few friends in my life - never any such friends as you have had, Helen - My friendships - the lonly (sic) few I ever enjoyed - have not been so much friendships, as attachments. I have been drawn towards my friends by the admiration of some power, as a general thing, rather than by the love of some traits - they haven't been friendships of the heart, if you can say so of any friendship - they haven't had the tenderness which yours have had; & consequently I have'nt been so jealous of the reputation of my friends, since they weren't so much a part of myself, as a distinct from my self - I can hardly find an exception in this - there is one, however, Helen, in the case of a friend whom chance gave me last August - I must confess I sh'd feel a little jealous if any one sh'd manifest a great disposition to criticise in that one case - however, for the most part I can calmly witness the impartial dissection of most of my friends characters - indeed, in most instances, it give me great pleasure -... [apologizes for "insinu-ations" in his last letter].....

What you said about my sister's love for me, & that other, is, I suppose, very true - at any rate it is just what she w'd have me believe - But still this engagement takes her away, & she ceases to be peculiarly my own- It did make me feel very, very sad indeed - and if it be unmanly to let the chest heave, & the lip tremble, & the tears fall, I must confess to a little unmanliness - I couldn't help it - she has been such a sister to me, & God knows how I love her -

So it seems Mr. John is going to Europe?- & you have an unaccountable presentiment of ill? I hope it is entirely unfounded, & that it won't trouble you at all - I don't think it ought to - I don't believe in them at all - Still I must confess myself staggered by their incomprehensibility. What indeed are they? are they as you defined them mere excessive "hopes & fears"?.......[on about presentiments - are they supernatural? full of deepest mystery....leads to commentary about "the future".-..would you like to see your own life foretold?] Is there any fascination to you (in) fatalism? There is something exceedingly so to me; I love to think of all things as "ordered" - harmoniously fitted in all their complicated combinations; there is a subduing grandeur, an awing sublimity in all this fxed, & fated harmony - .....may that future be a long, happy one to you, my dear friend -

So you have (a) trip in view; and a very pleasant one too - I love to hope for such things even if they never come - the anticipation makes up for the loss - ....

You spoke of Mr. Palmer as our Orator for next Commencement -they have already engaged Mr. Storrs of Brooklyn I believe. By the way have you ever heard him preach? You wl'd admire him exceeding-ly; a great deal of refinement & force in his style of writing - this reminds me of last Commencement again, of the oration of Prof. Shedd; I remember he didn't pay the strictest attention, & it was a very fine lecture - I admire it exceedingly & will send a copy for yr. perusal- Are you reading as much as ever? - I am reading now, all the time I get "The Head of the Family" by the author or authoress of "Olive"- it is to me intensely interesting: more practical than "Olive"; not quite as elegant as far as I have read in it. Did you read the ____ Papers? & if so don't you admire those capital hits occasionally?

You seem to fear I'll be a little misanthropic? - I guess not; at any rate I hope now- Try & hasten on next August; perhaps that promised ride or rather drive to Holyoke will frighten away all such tendencies - I am (_____ ---) s0 much on the prospect; it brings up so vividly that pleasant, pleasant past - [marginalia begins] when I first met you - what a good fate it was wh guided yr. wods the night we took that ride; had it not been for that you wl'd (___ ___ ___ ___) Miss Helen Fiske as ever - & sh'd never have known you as a good kind friend -

now, Helen, you must burn this letter as the due expression of appropriate thanks (____) will you? - at any rate it isnt so, take it as you may; it is just a friendly letter to my friend, wh- the writer hopes may find a ready answer - Can't it?

Do you hear from Charles Palmer often? How is he getting on? You asked me about Emmons - I can't tell you anything more about him, than I said in my last - there is only one fault in my friendship with him - he is a little younger - is of the Sophomore class; reserved for his pride, but with one of the best hearts, & the finest minds - a great deal of refinement; nothing harsh or grating; I think you wl'd like him very much - Do you hear often from Jennie Abbott? - & does she continue the same angel as ever? I have a great desire to see her, as yr. most intimate friend - ...I haven't been to see Mrs. Moore lately; though I catch glimpses of her occasionally - she is the same, staid, quiet relic - as ever, & particularly quieting to youthful enthusiasm. I enjoyed exceed-ingly my talk with her when I was there before - ....

HR to HMF Wednesday. Nov 5/51

It is a cold, bleak, wintry afternoon in Amherst, & I want a warm, good cosy chat w you, my dear friend - That was a grand letter of yr's - which I last re'cd; & even if, as you say, it was "mis-understandable" to yrself, it did me as vast amount of real good - I had been hoping, & doubting for two or three days, & at last the welcome message came; & if you had been here you would have laughed to see how pecularly opposite to my own condition was yr inimitable description of "the most comfortable position for reading a letter"- I had gone through with all sorts of preperation (sic) for reading yr letter; lighted my solar; stirred up the living coals in the good old hearth; exchanged coat & boots, for dressing-gown & slippers, & finally fairly established myself in my arm chair, & broken the seal of the mystical missive - was just congratulating myself upon my own peculiar prudence wh- would not let me "enter-tain an angel unanaus(?)", when I came to yr descrip-tion referred to - It was peculiarly appropriate & I appreciated it's full force - There's a deal in it too, isnt there? It makes the pleasure peculairly pleasurable I think, to make due prepara-tion, & shut out all possible intrusion of anything inconvenient, or misappropriate, & then sit (c___) down, in the triumphant consciousness that you are to enjoy an exquisite pleasure, wh is to be peculiarly & only your own - To be sure there is a t___ of selfishness in it; but then it's somewhat pardonable, when you reflect that in all human probability no other soul in creation cares a fig for the letter - But - as I was saying, I made due preparations to enjoy it, & was not in the least disappointed.

Why is it my friend that your letters always always do me so much good? This was like all the rest of them - It seemed to come in just the right time, & say just the right thing to me - they form my only completely satisfying companions -

In the course of your letter, Helen, you asked me why I didn't make Tutor D___ a friend - I did go to walk with him one morning, & enjoyed a good talk quite well - but at the same time I am not so much in want of a friend as to go seeking them; if I ever have a perfectly satisfying friend I don't want ever to seek them at-all - I want to have seen them a good deal; to have talked with them a good deal; to have commingled sentiments; I dont want to know that they have any magic power over me, until I, all of a sudden, find out that they are positively essential to my happi-ness; that they are a part of myself; a something wholly inseper-able from the "me - of the philosopher" But I see I am describing, quite an exalted friendship to say the least - & I'll stop -

But still I must ask you one question. Do you believe such a friendship possible for one who is at all acquainted with the working of his own mind & heart? & has sometimes thought it the fault of a self-study, that it debarred you from all the pleasing surprises which those enjoy who take the world just as it comes along; he who watch[e]s daily the workings of his own mind, & becomes an adept in all the intricate evolutions of his inner self, does he not attain a sort of prophetic vision, so that no action of his mind, no emotion of his heart is to him a stranger? He meets with no pleasant surprises, no new & unexpected joyous emotion; no strange friend, of whose omnipotent presence he was not aware, till that presence was wanting, & he woke up to the reality of an utterly insufferable void - Now is not this true? I don't know as it is, but I have some times thought it was - Now take such a character (an unfortunate term for me, but I must use it) as Brainerd - one who spends most of his time in thinking, & telling people how "it looks" - & "tastes" & "feels" - a purely sensuous man; whose intellect never held supremacy long enough to get the better of the body, or heart, and make his an intellectual being -i.e. for the principal part of his time - well now such a man as he would never detect--- the dawning of a friendship; he would literally "sleep over", & open his eyes - upon a full noon day of real pleasure - Hence his life & conversation are full of exclama-tions points, & interjection wh- are, it seems to me, a fair portrature of his emotions - He never questions, & so he never knows what is going to happen to him; it is all a constantly pleasing surprise -

And in some respects I think it is a happy ignorance; for if you are constantly watching to see who you are going to love, & have any liking at-all for self criticism, your delight in watching, as a disinterested spectator, your own actions, - will detract from, if not destroy, the depth of your own emotion, and your capability of loving - just as in the drama - if you spend your whole strength in disclosing to yourself the plot - you lose a deep, thrilling personal interest in the principal actions -

But my dear friend, I promised only to ask you a question; you must forgive me for this tedious essay -

I must confess, Helen, I was somewhat surprized at what seemed to be almost a journal extract, with wh- you favored me in yr last - But still I think I can comprehend your emotions. I think I know just how you felt when you wrote it; & I trust I can appreciate the honor of your confidence - [Chastizes her for a long passage of self-criticism in her letter to him] & permit me to say, Helen, that, for you to give vent to such expressions of supreme disgust with the specimen of divine architecture displayed in your own character, is, in my humble opinion, & in that of the rest of the community too, I reckon, paying a very poor compliment to your own artistic taste - [can't tell if he's criticizing her or something she said about the church]

I have been reviewing in my thoughts to night....all our acuaintance - from the ride to "Pelham Spring" - to the good long talk in the Alcove - What a pleasant panorama it is too - Oh! Helen you don't know how much I owe you - you don't know how much influence you have exerted over me for good....[goes on about a woman's influence for good]...I have been over all the rides we took, again this term. One morning, on horseback, I went over to N. Hadley, & down to Mr. Huntingtons, the ride of that Friday night - Almost every thing I met brought up the old scenes of that evening; when I came up that long hill, just where you began to talk to me in that strain, you can't think of the crowd of emotions, which rushed at once to my mind - I have lived that acquaintance of ours over, & over again - & sometimes, even when I hold a new letter of yours in my hand - I tremble for fear it may be a dream; for fear our acquaintance has ended; you are not in reality occasionally writing to me - convince me of the reality, by answering speedily -

Your criticism on "Yeast" I need say nothing about - only, if we were now publishing an Indicator, I should, I am afraid long ere this have returned it to you in the covers of the Periodical - You seem to be thinking the book of a decidedly bad influence - perhaps it may be so to the skeptical - but it seems to me there are some classes of the community to which it will do positive good - e.g-those young men who are walking in the steps of their fathers, just because their fathers walked them; it will wake them up ...[goes on in a religious bent for a while.]

You suggested the subject of Faith, as a fit one for me to write on - I have long had before me some such subject as this - but my total inability has prevented me; it is a glorious subject; but it asks for a strong pen -

By the way have you ever read "Reason & Faith - their claims & conflicts" - in the "Edinburgh"-? I can't tell you the number now, since I have lent it to Emily Fowler - There is another book I want to mention - "Alban" - by the author of "Lady Alice" - I have but just looked at it. Still if it is all, like the letter I read, it promises such a mind as yrs a rich treat -

In one of yr letters, you sent me a specimen of Emersons best - I wonder whether you have seen that criticism upon his writings, given by a Southern Paper - I will send it to you in my letter - I have been looking for it ever since your reference to him but have been unable to find it

[Marginalia]: Felicia Emerson starts next week for Michigan; to be gone a year! Guess - why? d'ye think the game will work - We now expect a young lady boarder - a Miss Dickinson - to take her place at the table - When I find out what she is - if she comes - I'll tell you - I had already heard of - & actually seen that letter to which you refer - I did not know, but that you had already re'cd an answer - I was talking with John afterwards; & incidently asked him if he had answered yr letter - he said no - & started the question of propriety. I gave him my opinions on the subject, & you need not b surprised if he writes you -

So you are not going to write to "Sue" after all - I am sorry - for I do believe she'd be so glad to hear from you - she is a fine girl - I like her very much - & call on her sister occasional-ly, and send a message to her - I had never thought Tutor D___ particularly fancied "Sue" perhaps it is so - you know better than myself -

You spoke of Brainerd - he is in College; just the same as ever -just as kind hearted - just as good as ever - Gorham [Train, A.C.'52] is also here. He did notice the change in my treatment of him, & unexpectedly acted thereon - he does not trouble me at all - By the way - in talking about the call upon yrself & sister with me a few days since, in answer to some inquiries of mine, he said that you did not treat him in that way then - I guess you were right - You see I have followed yr example; & filled it out - Do not let it be long, Helen, ere you write me; I wait for your letters - and now - Good bye - believe me, my dear friend, ever & always - yours sincerely -

I wrote John Sanford, a few days since; poor fellow; I fancy I see him already pining away - from a want of yr good sisters letters or, to judge from the past, giving away his heart, with renewed ardor for the thousandth time, to some black eyed capecod (sic) lass - But it was rather cruel of you to put a summary veto upon his return - though I suppose it is "all for the best" - Do you hear of him from Ann? I hope so; & that he is happy - She will always make other people so -

You spoke to me about calling on Mrs. Moore; I have longed to do; in the first of the term, I could not, from an excess of duties; in the middle I was sick - & for the past three weeks she has been out of town - I look at the house, every time I pass it; it brings back to me the old scenes -

HR to HMF Saturday morning - Nov- 29/51

Thanks to that "huge pile of letters," my dear friend, wh- would not let you destroy that "fragmentary epistle"-of wh- you so bitterly complained- It reached me last Monday evening- just as warm; just as good; &, in spite of your wishing my silence on this point, just as influential as ever- I had been "waiting" for it, a week or so; each night going to the office; each night returning dissatisfied to my room, and trying to supply its place with reveries about old times, Amherst, Albany &ct- & struggling to catch faint glimpses of a hoped for future- At last it came; and so delighted was I at its reception, that, entirely forgetting the respect due to the Rev. Prof Tyler with whom I had been walking to the office- I rushed forward, & shouted out "98"- & when I recovered my sense of prop(r)iety was obliged to retrace my steps, & offer all sorts of apologies to his insulted majesty-

I was very busy preparing for an Exhibition at wh- I was to speak that night, and of wh- I'll send you a Schedule if I don't forget it, so that I could do no more than half read it, (or rather read half it, for obliged to lay it aside for the future; it formed no unpleasant anticipation, I assure you, during the troubles of the evening, to think there was waiting for me a nice long letter to be read- However, once through, I read it, & re-read it; & have just finished it again- It is so good to get yr letters, & so good to read them, that I can't help telling you of it; perhaps I'll forward some of them, & see if you won't say the same-

I was here interrupted by the call of an old playmate, who enticed me out skating; but I am through with it now, and can begin again- not, however, without telling you of one incident wh- befel me on my way to the ice- I was sauntering slowly along, quite forgetful of the presence of my friend, and thinking of almost everything, when I thought I recognized a familiar face in one of the passers by; to re-assure myself of the fact, I turned round, & addressing the individual with the appelation of "George?", was instantly saluted with a "How areye, Henry?" by the identical young African, who last August formed the butt of all our jokes, and the incalculably fortunate safety-valve for all y'r surplus laughter-Oh! what ridiculous pictures did memory begin to paint on the dark ground work! visions of Mrs. Dr Coit & "her intimate friend the Hon. So & So"; "camel's hair shawls;" "white morning dresses-"; "spilt grass"; &ct; &ct- all, finally touched off with the uinimitable prayer of John E's, that we might "feed in the fear of the Lord"!!-

Oh! What a host of funny things were crowded into those few weeks of last Commencement. I just now caught myself snapping my fingers at the bare memory of them- but they are all gone, & we'll bid them a hearty good bye-

By the way (though of course not at all suggested by the above) John Sanford had returned before I left Amherst- he seems somewhat changed, though about the same as before- He dares a little more, now that he has left College, and is not at all dependent upon the Faculty, for his position; some think his course, for the last year, of quite doubtful honor; they accuse him, with how much justice I am not prepared to say, of seeking favor for an end, in a way, & to an extent altogether incompatible with an honorable, manly course- I am told by the best authority (i.e. Emily Fowler told me, between friends, that she had the best authority) that Jane Hitchcock has no faith in man- She thinks, that none of our sex can be trusted now; for she regarded John, as the impersonation of sincerity; & since he does not now display the same excess of devotion wh- he manifested before he was made valedictorian, she, with many others, much to my surprize, regards John as false, & fickle! Strange that they sh'ld have found it out so soon, isn't it?- what remarkable penetration they have! I most heartily congratulate them for their fortunanate discovery- But, to be sober, some in Amherst are feeling quite badly about it, & pouring forth their heart-felt sympathies for Jane- they think she fairly lost her heart last summer & finds her honest love, unrequited- I suppose the amount of it all is just this- John fancied that he thought a world of Jane- & Jane did really think a world of John- (rather unsentimental terms, I am aware; but still expressive in this case-) & when John mingled in other scenes he forgot all about it- while Jane kept thinking on, & on- she has, it seems to me, been always a little too cautious; she has so sedulously guarded her affections; or rather so constantly concealed them, & screened herself from the world, that she knows almost nothing about it- her thorough acquaintance with our sex is limited to her bro's. Ned & Charlie; and we all know they are not a fair type of the rest of mankind; if what they say, is true, I'm heartily sorry; if not, I hope it never will be-

I enquired of John, if he had seen y'r Sister Annie; he said not, but should call when he returned- A nice, long, pleasant (time?) to them. I was anticipating a long talk myself, with John before I came home; but was denied the privilege- he goes back in about a fortnight.

You asked me, Helen, in y'r last if I had ever thought of being a minister- I have thought long, & earnestly of it- To decide what I should be in life, has been the vexed question with me for three or four years- & I don't know but I am just as far from settling it now, as I ever was- You thought it was decided? Well, I thought so too; but not to my perfect satisfaction; I did fairly decide to enter the Law; but still it sometimes seems to me as if it's (sic) field were too small, too earthly, altogether too earthly to satisfy me for life- I sympathize with you fully in y'r admiration of a ministerial life- & it is this same admiration of that office, that makes me so reluctant to go any where else- It does seem so noble to consecrate all one's powers to the work of doing good- to go through life, leaning on the arm, & trusting to the promise of the Saviour- beleiving that He "will be with you always"; to lead an humble, consistent but by no means insignifi-cant life- to do an humble, noble life-long work in the service of your Heavenly father- to be the "bearer of good tidings" to men; to stand between man & his Maker, & breathe the whisperings of the Almighty into the ears of mortals- Yes; that is a noble, soul-satisfying work; to raise your thoughts above the earth, & "walk with God"- There is in it that which can alone fully satisfy the reaching out of an immortal spirit; the cravings for the Infinite; the restless yearning of our troubled spirits after something immortal, unearthly, Divine- those unsatisfied longings of wh- you, or I & every thinking mind is secretly & forever conscious. There is nothing, I know, in the dusty technicalities of Law wh- answers at all these callings; it is too earthly- too sensuous- too material for an immortal soul struggling to catch a glimpse of its origin, & destiny- it is much more akin to our spiritual nature, to seperate ourselves from the earth while still we are in it; to offer ourselves as humble representatives of a better Kingdom, we are longing to enter- This is the true ministers work; & this I often think I should long to do.

But in the life of a successful pastor there are other duties than those of the pulpit, & for these I have feared I was never fitted. There is too much selfishness in my nature, too little sympathy with others, too little general benevolence, vastly too little, to make me a fit man to minister to the wants of others. I have too strong likes & dislikes, too excessive partialities, in a single word, I have too much pure selfishness for the necessary, comprehensive friendships of a consistent pastors life- Perhaps these could be kept under; perhaps I could sacrifice my strong personal prejudices for the sake of my work; but if I did, should I not be sacrificing my very life principle? should I not be shutting up those wellsprings of the heart from which flows out the warm, strong friendship for a very few, wh- is now, & always must be, essential to my success? It would be a very hard thing to make naturally strong, personal partialities consistent with the necessary universal friendship for a whole people- & unless I should succeed in so-doing, there would be scenes, in wh-, though taste, & experience might dictate the proper course, still the veriest child would detect me in acting a feigned & unnatural one-But suppose it could be done; suppose I should so conquer myself as to sympathize generally with the whole nei(gh)borhood. Still what would be done with my ambition upon which I am so dependent, as a stimulant to action? Oh; Helen, as you say, "who shall tell us these things"- If I only knew what to do, I would go & do it- if I could only find out for what I was made, I would go & fill that place, however humble it might be- I think I must enter either the Law, or the ministry; each is a noble profession & in each one may, if he will(,) do much good- I can see in myself chacteristics wh- are inconsistent with the latter, but wh- do not so decidedly militate against the former- & though I would love, on many accounts to be the one, I think I was made for the other; i.e I think so now-

But a truce to this egotistical harrangue- it will probably not make much difference with humanity, whichever way it is decided-
What are you reading now? I am trying to get "Lenis(?) Arnauld," & think I can; if so, it will give me no little pleasure, to find out more thoroughly the peculiarities of Miss. Livingston, to wh- you so aptly allude- "Olive" I have already adopted as one of my few pets- I like it better than when I wrote of it before- though I don't like it in some respects- I don't like to see "Olive" cherishing such a sense of power- this consciousness of superior ability is rather a masculine, than a feminine trait and in the novel, it takes from her, as a natural woman, & gives to her, as an artificial heroine- To this, I think you alluded once, in speaking of y'r friend "Jennie Abbot"- By the way, Helen, I want much to see her; if she is what I think she is, I wonder not she has found in you a fine friend-

This makes me think- why, my dear friend, did you speak so of your influence, in y'r last good letter? I could not but believe you were doing yourself a great injustice. But then I think I know just why you did so- it was that same restlessness, that same dissatisfaction with the present, in character & position, that same craving after higher attainments that made the past look dark, & worthless; & you wished it were all buried together, good & evil, that you might build, upon their common grave, a purer offering. I know, Helen, how to sympathize with you; but you may be certain, my dear friend, that it has not been for evil, that you have talked & written to me. Do you remember that Friday night?

Have you written to Sue Gilbert? Her sister, Martha, sent me a note last Sabbath eve- asking me to help fill up a box for her with a letter- I did so; & am hoping to receive an acknowledgment-Perhaps you remember, that, on the day of that memorable ride to Shutesbury, Sue & y'rself made a wreath of oak leaves & Sue was to keep it till Commencement & when she went, she left it to me, to guard, and it is now safely laid away waiting for you- Come & get it?

There is another keepsake, on my table, in feature bearing a strong resemblance to Mrs. Coit, but proving itself to be nothing more or less than a match box, with a pretty couplet on it commencing- "Oh happy man"- Now, Helen, who do you suppose left that for me? I'll tell you its history- About the middle of last term, John E- told me he had something in his room for me- I went to get it, & with it rec'd this history- viz- that you intended it as a puzzling mystery, for me to solve & that he was unable to get it into my room & so the plan fell through; moreover, he inciden-tally remarked, he was under solemn oath to say nothing about it, & consequently preferred I should say nothing about it to you- wh- by the way I promised- so that I wish you to know nothing about what I have just been telling you- The mystery, you see, is solved- & I- thanks to the donor, am the hapy possessor of my "choice of matches"-

But I must close- I thank you again, for your last, and all your good inspiring letters, & hoping soon to add another to its list, I am as ever- Sincerely y'r friend Henry-

[Marginalia on pp. 1 & 2]: About a week before the last term closed, a young student from Yale came to my room bringing letters of introduction from a friend of mine connected with that Coll- upon their examination I found out the bearer was a Palmer from Albany; I suppose as son of the Mr. Palmer with whom you are boarding- is it not?- I presume he would much prefer you should know nothing about his visit; as I think his father never will- he was here on business for a Secret Society of wh- he is a member- a pretty good fellow, I guess- but he'll probably change womewhat before he leaves college-

You asked me, Helen, whether or no, it was pleasant for me to have you journalize- It is, exceedingly so; I love to have you write just when you feel like it; though I am very sorry to have intruded upon y'r morning so- I'll try to do better hereafter-

Sincerely y'rs, as ever


HR to HF Greenfield Dec 9/51-

Your letter, my dear friend, came to hand by this evening's mail- has been completely read; re read; and, in compliance with y'r request,- burned- It did not in the least shatter my faith in your sanity, or my own- it came, & talked to me frankly, & honestly; it draws out from me a full expression of gratitude for your confidence- It strengthened me in the fond belief, that I had found in the person of yourself, what we can seldom find in such a world as ours, a real, honest friend; and it confirms me in my theory, that anyone, to be such a friend must possess, sincerity & integrity in word & action. I thank you, my dear friend, for that honest, full expression of your sentiments, on a point, where one's decision, in my view, decides their character; and I trust your confidence will in the sequel prove itself not misplaced -

.....[long passage emphasizing what he's just said - that his views are hers]...and if ever in my chance reveries the idea suggested itself to me that there was an apparent inconsistency between our common views, and our common actions it was instantly vanished by the honest consciousness that our acquaintance was a grand exception - a noble exception with wh- gossip, & appearance had nothing to do; wh- was wholly out of the course of the worlds practice. I seemed, perhaps foolishly, to think the whole world, i.e. little Amherst, knew, & could not but know, how little of artifice, how little of world wise formality, & how much of true whole hearted sympathy, how much of noble & conscious honesty there was, and, Helen, I trust still is, in our chance friendship; & so constant was this thought, or, so constantly absent was any thought at all about it, that the idea of a flirtation never occurred to me; nor can I yet believe it has seriously occurred to any one; but, I remember, Society doesn't deal with serious things; and if, through carelessness, or ignorance, it has ever escaped from the lips of any one that you were flirting, (& I can't bear to write the word) it would, of course, be my earnest wish, to relieve you of an imputation so unpleasant to yourself & so palpably inconsis-tant with y'r own, & the character of every true, & noble woman-

But I am making too serious a matter of it; I don't believe any one ever thought of accusing you of flirting; I can't believe it, Helen; & I remember too you referred to our acquaintance, not as an illustration of a fact, but of a probability - you would not have me infer that the world had actually stigmatized our friend-ship a flirtation; but cite it an an instance of what they would call such, in the relation of y'r good sister Annie to a fourth person-

Now how will y'r coming to Amherst affect that? I suppose, my dear friend, it can be answered in no way so well, as by simply asking how did y'r coming affect it? There Helen, I have frankly answered y'r question - I have told you just what I thought in very few words - I know John is exceedingly interested in y'r sister; nor do I wonder; and in all probability if you came his reason would be conquered by his regard for her, & he would again shower upon her his peculiarly exclusive atten-tions, which were so marked last August- Still I dont think Amherst people called his friend-ship with y'r sister a flirtation- they understand John S. far too well for that; especially - just now- "John is too honest to flirt" & there is no doubt he was altogether too honest in that case; too honest to meet the wishes of some.

But I know, Helen, after all it is not so much the reputation, as the actual character, & condition of y'r sister, that you are anxious for; (and truly thankful should she be, & is she, doubt-less, that she has an elder sister like yourself) you are fearful it may materially affect her for evil. Of this, Helen, you are y'rself the best judge - & yr decision will undoubtedly be a wise one -

That zealous friend of y'r sister's has been unquestionably injudicious; & has unfortunately erred- In fact I think many of our sex unintentionally do a great deal of harm, in just that way. They sometimes force their attentions, (though I do not honestly think it was so in this case,) upon young ladies to such an extent as to compromise their true womanly freedom, & reputation without once thinking what they are doing- They pay such exclusive attentions, blinded, as they are to the light of the world.....he unintention-ally placed Annie in a doubtful position....and if (though I hate to trouble you with the allusion) if, he was an acknowledged suitor, the case would be different- entirely so; but he isn't; & to avoid his being so, is y'r desire; & in this matter, as I said before, y'r judgement, & final decision will be the wisest. I cannot deny there would be much to encourage, in a course similar to the one of last Commencement; but can't it be avoided? I do hope so - I wish I was with you to=night, having a nice tood talk, wh- the world would not dare to call a flirtation; I presume we should agree upon this point, as well as others; at any rate I should talk just as I have; honestly, frankly - for you see you have drawn out from me a fair statement of my views; if it's the reputation you care for; I shouldn't care a fig; for Amherst people will say or think no bad thing about it. - but if you fear unpleasant scenes in future I know nothing about it - you know best.

I have been out to a little gathering since I began this letter, to a Mrs. Alvord's; while there, the hostess asked me about the Misses Fiske- I gave her all the information I could spare, viz. y'r present residence- She told me she was well acquainted with y'r father; he supplied the pulpit in our Church for several months, in the absence of its pastor, & spent his time, while in Greenfield in her family- It was very pleasant to me to hear more about those parents, to whose memory, I had just learned from reading y'r letter, you were fearing you had not paid sufficient reverence. Now, my dear friend, were you not a little uncharitable there in y'r self criticism? It seems to me so - It may have been owing to my own peculiar feelings at that time; but it seemed to me not at all gay; it was far from it in my case - nor can I think that the blithesomeness of those hours was inconsistent with the serene, & holy love, which every one, who knows you, knows you bear to the departed; not at all; it was relaxation, nor do I think you should chide y'rself for it. It is the spirit which can alone pay worthy worship to buried goodness; And did not yours love to linger where your loved parents once had been? did it not love to lead you back to their past, and onward to their present life? did it not call you, with it's (sic) deep, earnest voice, & bid you be like them? Why then chide yourself; were they not pleased? -

I have just returned from Amherst this morning. I went down last Saturday, and enjoyed myself exceedingly - a nice long talk with Emily Fowler- I always do enjoy myself with her; she en-courages me so much; & she has a good warm heart, after all- she is not all talent- I noticed, as I came by there, that Mrs. Moore has returned, & shall not fail to call & see her when I return; in four weeks - She'll tell me something about you I presume.

I am amusing myself the best was I can: reading, walking, & having such long, long talks with my sister -

She is to me, I know not what: I should know, if she were not - my life woul be changed, sadly changed without her - I read books, and then we talk them over, & then gradually run on, & on, till we get clear off in some dream land; & then take to one reason again, & come back -......

But a throbbing head bids me bring this sheet to a close - I need not say, my dear friend, that I have written this letter, in a certain sense, unwillingly; I had cherished dear, fond hopes for a very pleasant future; I had been looking forward, with so much pleasure, to next Commencement; and I cannot yet give it up quite; I must still believe it will be so arranged that you will come in spite of present appearances - that it will be thought best to come on the whole, even in view of all things. It has been very hard for me to acquiesce to any extent in y'r sentiments; but I do at heart, appreciate fully I trust y'r sisters position, & y'r views; & I concur with you fully - Still, Helen, I can't bear to think of it a moment; and I will not. I will close this letter without any more words upon it. I can firmly believe that whatever course you may be led to adopt will be the best one- I believe that all these things are guided by Infinite Wisdom....

yr firm, unfailing friend
Henry D. Root-

P.S. I am sorry that letter reached you in the morning; I see I can't avoid it, till I get to Amherst -...

[marginalia, beg. p.1 re his disappointment she won't attend Commencement, his dashed hopes and plans and anticipations. HF's hesitation seems to be bound into her concern for how their friendship will be conceived\interpreted by others - ie., concern for her reputation.]

HR to HF Greenfield Jan. 3/52

Y'r note, my dear friend, told me to write "as soon as the mood seized me-" I didn't obey, I'll acknowledge, for the mood seized me at once, after reading yrs. I wanted then, & I have wanted ever since to sit down to have a long talk with you; such a one as the fairy days of last August were wont to witness. I wanted to ask ten thousand questions, & give as many answers. In fact I wanted to see you much more than I had before, if possible, for all my visit to Albany seemed a dream; a perfect dream - I was (scarcely?) conscious of its enjoyment- I don't know why- I could not really believe that I was seeing the same person, whom I so accidently met last Commencement; whose friendship had been the source of so much enjoyment ever since- .....You remember I told you that I had lost sight of yr. face; couldn't recall it. and it was strictly true; for when you came into the room, I was almost as much surprized, as I sh'd have been, had you been an entire stranger. I suppose the secret of it was just this. My acquaintance with you, last August, was comparatively short, had been absorbed, & was comparatively forgotten in the after pleasure of yr. good letters. Now I couldnt tell what was the face I was to see, but knew it belonged to her who wrote me my last letter; but when you crossed The Threshold you looked so much like the "Miss Fiske" of last Commencement, that it carried me back at once to those scenes; ten thousand memories came rushing back to me, & I could not realize at all that I was actually seeing you, my dear friend, to whom I had been, & am now writing- So you see my visit may not inaptly be called a "dream"; for it had all the vagueness, & hurry & confusion of a very pleasant dream - And it was a very pleasant one too....

...[a paragraph re his surprise at seeing her again]... [then another re his train trip back to Amherst, and a Miss Sue Palmer
whom Helen knows, whom he runs into and sits with on train] but at Pittsfield whom sh'd we see entering the car but Prof Tyler & a son!- one of the dozen- He didnt notice us at first, but soon the little boy turned round & respectfully enquiring for the health of "Mr. Root" called the old Prof's attention; whereupon he arose & came to see us- I rose to meet him, & he very coolly took my seat!

The greatest insult I ever rec'd- but I wisely restrained myself from giving vent to any emotions of hostility, & he soon relinquished his usurped seat(?), to my satisfaction- He told me, that Mr. March was but little better, though he seemed to be gaining; he thinks of going south- In a letter of Emily F- which my sister showed me, I saw that E__ was bearing it with a good deal of composure; it seems, however, to be a trial almost insupport-able-

By the way, why did you think I had been so fickle in my sentiments toward her? I admired her talent just as much last summer as I now do; & I can not think I have changed so much as you imagine in my estimate of her heart qualities- To be sure she has been more kind to me than ever before- & I do love to see her loving Mr. March- I had rather go there by far, than to any place in Amherst, and often enjoy a talk with her exceedingly, but at the same time I cannot fail to notice many traits which are put forth? to, as they seriously do, mar an otherwise, to say the least, remark-able character. I trust these will some day be removed, perhaps by the suffering she now bears.

The great trouble with great men & women is, that their faults, though few, are fearfully great- so it is with Emily- She has the most prominent virtues; exalted talents; and exquisite appreciation which would always awaken sympathy were it not sometimes conquered by a cardinal failing of humanity- selfishness. A great deal of refinement - both by nature, & acquired by careful cultivation, all these she certainly has; -- but she has with them, great faults- No one can deny it, or help blaming her for them - and I guess, Helen, if you were to look right into my heart, (as I sometimes fear you do when I'm with you) you would find just about the same sentiments toward E.F. as were there last summer- Don't you think so?

Helen, does Annie really love anyone? An impertinent question - and I'll take it back- But she does love- to talk about J.S. She told me she couldn't correspond with any gentleman until she was eighteen- but she wanted me to write to J.S. & find out when his term closed, then write that to you, & you would tell her- Strange, unaccountable anxiety! She "fancies" him, I supose! A strange thing this "fancy" of ours is, isn't it? What wonders it will sometimes work! Would you like to take a peep into the future? eh?-

Four days more carry me back to my old room at Amherst, & the fifth will initiate me into the mysteries of "Stewart" "Brown" "Reid" &ct, &ct, authors innumerable - But formidable as is the array, I long to get back there. I long to see my old arm chair, & the large black fireplace- There are many many associations, pleasant & exceedingly troublesome, which linger around that familiar home- I love to shut myself up there, & wander away- It is a great place to think of friends; and though it is pleasanter far to see, than think of them-- generaly-- Still I am at work there, & the consciousness of that wakens resolves & happiness- I want to get back, & I want to get a letter too soon after I get there- Can't I?- I shall go & see old Mrs Moore- I have really anticipated a good deal of pleasure in it - I wish you could drop in there some afternoon, & call on the old lady with me - What a strange thing that was - the keeping of those cake boxes - I have often thought of it as one of those untold stories which are hemmed in between the walls of a good many New England houses - There ws something quite eloquent in it, wasnt there -

But before I forget it, I must ask you one question. You remember you thought me fickle in my relations or regard toward E.F. What is the reason my dear friend, of the change in yr. sentiments towards J.S.? Annie tells me they have changed material-ly- Do I understand it, or no- Can I explain her thinking it so?- Tell me, will you, in yr. next what it is that has instigated(?) so sudden a change in yr own views- Perhaps I mistook Annie- perhaps she meant yr. views were changed on one or two points only-is this so?-

[marginalia, beg. p.1]: P.S. One thing more Helen - You remember that when we were talking about that memorable midnight scene, after speaking of J's- communication to his bro. Annie asked me if "any other Amherst person knew of it"- I said "I guess not"- The reverse instantly suggested itself to me; but owing to the immediate subsequent change in the conversation, but more, I fear, to an unwillingness to confess myself as having done that which might be recreant(?) to yr. wishes, I failed to remark it - So I'll now say what might thus have been said in a word - viz. that the morning after, I rode down on the stage with Bliss - the only fellow in College, with whom I sympathized deeply - After speaking to him of y'self, as I had often done before, and influenced by the same excitement wh- had kept me up until three hours previous- but still with perfect confidence it would never proceed further, I told him that I had been up till four oclock, & with yourself. I said nothing about John & Annie, & aside from him, never lisped it to a mortal - I am sorry; it was useless & imprudent - but you may rest assured it was as harmlessly as it was thoughtlessly said - Should this displease you, Helen, or suggest a [_______ly] reasonable doubt as to my faithfulness, will you banish it, & forgive me? Talk with me frankly, as ever, & you will find me as ever frank -

As Ever Sincerely yrs -


HR to HMF [this fragment is last page of letter from Greenfield Jan. 3/52]

Sabbath Eve - 11 oclock -

I find myself, my dear friend, again in my room, & writing to you - I thought of finishing this last night, but was obliged to call on some gay, thoughtless, heartless beings of yr. sex, & so I couldn't- What were all these worse than useless girls made for? Can you tell me Helen? I can't bear to be with them. If women only knew the extent of their influence on us, they would justly tremble. And what a fearful thing this influence of each of us over the other is! How it makes me almost wish not to be, rather than bear the awful responsibility of his being- The only relief one can find, is in the constant consciousness of an honest heart and that's relief enough for any fear -

I have finished that "Dream Life (") and a "book of the heart" it certainly is: and any one with a heart can't help feeling so - I wish I could see the author; & still I don't know but I sh'd feel a strange sensitiveness in meeting him - as if I possessed some of his heart's treasures, & sh'd fear lest I might deal harshly with them - He is a man, I guess, rather poorly fitted for a jostling, every day, New England life - rather too sensitive for it's stern practicalities. Tis a hard thing indeed to find a man with just enough of sensibility in his nature, or rather with a whole heart full of it, and giving it just it's right place. We are apt to be unduly sensitive or excessively sensible; dont you think so?

I have commenced, & am exceedingly interested in that novel you gave me - What a sly vein of real humorous satire the author unconsciously displays; witne[ss] the description of we "who had" "swallowed a poker, & became imbued with its distinguish-ing characteristics"-

But it's quite late, & I must close - Will you tell me, Helen, what was that "difference" between "Henry" (?) & "Mr Root" you spoke of? it was ideal, I assure you I shall wait for yr. next letter with a good deal of impatience; & remember, my dear friend, I shall need it when I get back to Amherst - I want to find out those "thoughts of yr heart" wh_ are coming, as you say, "by degrees"; and if you only know how much good yr kind letters do me, you'd send them speedily -

And now, Helen, do my ideas correspond with yr own? Tell me soon, & meantime, believe me, as ever, yr. warm, true friend Henry.

[along margin] That affair with Charles Palmer is all settled. I don't think he doubts my honesty in it - He sees it all now -

HR to HF Amherst. Sab. eve- Jan 11/52

I sat down of Friday evening, my dear friend, after reading yr. good letter, and began a long, beautiful answer to it; but just as I was fairly writing, in came a poor fellow, who had come back to Amherst in a snow storm, and begged a night's lodging; of course he got it; so I had to put away my portfolio, and also the thoughts I wanted to write, and entertain him, till he had warmed himself, & then go to bed. It was awfully provoking, I assure you, for I wanted to write you; but still he was a friend, and I was glad to see him - But I have to night taken the precaution to lock my door; a bright fire is blazing in the hearth; and I am going to tell you first what I am thinking about: and that not without the promise of a "penny", but purely of my own accord, and because I want to - and what a pleasure it is to tell someone just what you are thinking about: there's a pleasant consciousness of honesty, which, aside from the pleasure of telling a friend, pays you amply for any acknowledgment. And first, Helen, I have been sitting in that "old arm chair", with my head resting on my hands, and my feet on the ottoman before me, gazing into the fire and wishing you were occupying that other empty arm chair over opposite (wicked wish! Wasn't it? That wouldn't be "proper"). That I might ask you, as among the first of those "thousand questions" whether that "regard" for me, for which I do heartily thank you, was "whole", as you so generously told me it was: whether it did not secure a shriek from the confessions of my last letter from which it has not entirely recovered. Whether confidence in me was not a little shattered? Now, Helen, is it really so? Do you have to prop up your faith by argument and then do you sometimes fear your confidence in me is misplaced. I do hope not: I can't bear to have any friend and especially such a friend as yourself feel so. I don't want you should have an argumentative faith in me. I can't bear the belief that it is so, I do wish I could see you tonight that I might ask you if your friendship for me is really as firm, & confiding as it was, and that so of its own accord? Whether you had to ask yourself doubtingly any more than you were want to, and any more than the skeptical world says he ought always to do, "is he to be trusted." I know I exposed myself to reasonable conjectures and so fearful was I made of the consciousness of this fact, that, as I came up to my room, I thought the letter was rather smaller than usual, & the thought crossed my mind perhaps she is angry with you Henry, & this letter may be the last: and though I was so pleasantly disappointed as to find in it a secret entrusted to me, of some importance to Annie, still I couldn't help feeling that you had reason to doubt me, & feared that you might - but I am striving to banish my fear & hope it is not so - it is all past: I did you a wrong, for which I have been so, sorry, & though you did not say formally, "I forgive you"- still you wrote me a good letter, & I shall strive to hope for your unimpaired friendship- [note from Polly Longsworth: this all relates news revealed in his prior marginalia, that he innocently betrayed to Bliss knowledge that they had stayed up together until four in the morning last Commencement time]

Prof Tyler preached a Kossuth sermon this morning, the only beauty of which, was the quotations of his burning eloquence- I suppose it is a decidedly wicked thing, but still I must cnfess to somewhat wandering thoughts. And by the way, what a capital place Church is to think of friends....Isn't it better, doesn't it do one more good, to think of good friends, than to listen to poor preaching?-

Tis a very funny thing, but still tis true, that forgetfulness of yr. features- It must be owing to some radical deficit in my constitution; I can't recall faces at all well-....

It is Wednesday afternoon 3-40, my dear friend & I am again writing to you- I haven't thus far told you anything about my "surroundings" this term; I was too full of other thoughts when I wrote the firs four pages. I am occupying the same room I did last term, at the "Old Snell(?) House", and when I came back, much to my surprise, I assure you, fo I gadn't heard a word of it, found Brainerd Harrington located most comfortably, in the room adjoin-ing! It was quite a surprise; I knew he was obliged, from ill health, to leave Mt Pleasant (you'll remember, perhaps, we found him sick one night) but did not know his "whereabouts". He is just the same fellow as ever; just as good natured, just as lazy, just as kind, as he always was. I have a good many good times with him, not particularly intellectual, & quite prejudicial, I fear, to progress - Funny idea, that of yr's- calling him my "pet"; why he's twenty six years or nearly, & I am not quite twenty; of course I couldn't very well "pet" him. But I have ofen thought it was a funny relation I sustained to him; not a friendship arising from similarity of taste, or creating it, to any great extent; but which consists in good will; no poetry, about it, at all, but purely a practical; very much, I have often seriously thought, like the friendship of two dogs! that is to say, in the eyes of the rest of the rest of the world; for I should be decidedly unwilling to acknowledge any positing canine characteristics. I suppose, in truth, it was occasioned more by the cnsciousnes of my want of those traits, for which he is happily distinguished. When I came to College I roomed with him; he was kind, generous, sympathizing, & with less practical selfishness, than falls to the natural lot of men - These traits I had not; I was capable, to be sure, of a much deeper sympathy than one he could feel, & I couldn't help seeing it; but in the domestic arrangement of our College life, we showed a constant kindness, which, though it did not imply intellectual capabiities, to any great extent;, stil did, and always must imply a warm heart; & this awakened a hearty acknow-ledgement of it, and occasioned our friendship. It was, to be sure, a friendship of a grosser kind; there was little real sympathy & there could never be much; but still I think it might be dignified with the name of friendship -

There was another circumstance which favored our friendship; I had just lost my first practical sympathy with the first sentimental friend I ever had in my own sex. How well do I remember it. We are always, you know, inclined to admire what we have not, & what we see in our companions also are worth our companionship; and when I came to College, if you'll beleive it, Helen, I looked upon J.S. as the model of manly excellence - To me, he had almost every desirable trait; was talented; maintained a high position in College; and sentimental! Oh! what a friendship that was! I was completely carried away with the realization, as I then thought, of what I had never really imagined, but of which I had caught just chance glances - I had been almost unconsciously yearning, from my very boyhood, for something I hardly knew what; there was an absence of something; a vacant spot that must be filled; and this vacant spot the ideal J.S. did completely fill - I was as happy in his society as you can imagine; and many & many a time did I wish that I could live with him always - I "believed in him", and would have trusted my life with him; I remember as distinctly as if it were yesterday the first time a suspicion even suggested tiself that he might not be so constant a friend as I took him to be - But it cam stealthily - as suspicion always does, doesn't it, Helen? - at first unwilling to acknowledge even by its own existence; but by & by it opens into a positive doubt - And how hard it was for me to admit that he could be else than perfectly & forever faithful. No! I would not believe it - But I had to; & the slightest thing, which was but little in reality, & for which now I shouldnt care a fig, showed me that J.S. was imperfect! what a discovery! Well - we both grew older - and that means a good deal you know - till now, though we are, I hope, first rate friends, still the friendship is on altogether a different footing - So it seems reflection, or something else Helen, has brought a decided change in yr. views, and consequently in yr. feelings. Well I am glad, if you were unjust in yr. estimate last August, you are doing him justice now; he is a very fine fellow -

You asked me, my dear friend, if "Amherst knew of our corres-pondence"- it does, to a certain extent - I told Brainerd, J.E. & G.L. of it, for these reasons; Brainerd went to the office, and enquired for me - Mr Carter [Amherst postmaster] refused to give him a letter he saw in my box; of course this was rather strange since (sic) had always given them to him before, and was enough to excite his suspicions. Gorham & J.E. also were suspicious, & spoke to me about it; so I thought it better to remove the suspicions, by a part acknow-ledgement, with the certainty it would proceed no further, than to allow them to disseminate their views- and I think now it was best; for aside from those three, the P.M. & myself, the happy quintette, Amherst is in profound ignorance of it- I know, Helen, this is one of these cases where the world judges "what they know nothing about," and I am sorry; but let me congratulate you upon the spirit of resignation yr. reflection displayed-; may it not be tested by any unjust judgment-....

...goes on about some naturally assume a flirta-tion or engagement.... says runor afoot during winter that he was engaged to one of the Misses Emerson..... goes on at length

[marginalia].... re Emily Fowler: I have not been in there this term, but shall do so soon- She bears up admirably under her misfortune- considering she loves so passionately....I went to see old Mrs. Moore the other day; she didn't know me at first, but she soon found me out & we had a good talk. She spoke with a great deal of interest of yr "father & yr father's friends"; & she said you & Annie could be no more welcome anywhere than to these hearts & homes- She talked pleasantly & I'm going again soon-

Jennie Hitchcock is coming today (Thurs) for a short vacation- I shall hope to see her soon - Annie told me a little about that letter; I sh'd conclude it did her much honor; I never fairly knew that girl for some reason, though I suppose she is the worthy possessor of her venerable reputation-

I had a note from Sue Gilbert a day or two since; she is enjoying herself, I should think, quite well- coming home in June- It is thought by some here that Tutor Dickinson's affections were more enlisted in Mat's case, than Sue's- I know nothing about it- .....

Amherst College Tues. Feb '52

It is a week tonight, my dear friend, since I rec'd yr. long letter, which did me so much good that I must begin my answer by thanking you for it. I wanted to sit down imediately upon it's (sic) receipt and send back to you just the thoughts it awakened, but it was impossible then, and it has been impossible till now, but now you shall have them. How provoking it is this delay in answering questions, and exchanging thoughts; and then when the answers & thoughts do reach one to have them all grammatically worded out, and formally arranged, with due regard to orthography etc. etc, "tied down," as you say, "by commas & semicolons" how inferior all this makes them; how much they suffer by their position; how poorly do their nice garments become the humbly thoughts of a common conversation; how abstract & general it makes commonplace realities; how much better it is to recognize an answer to yr. question, or the twin sister to yr thought in the pressure of the hand, the lighting of the eye, or the involuntary smile, or still further of by that mysterious incomprehensible intuition wh- is the peculiar possession of congenial spirits in contact (if spirits can touch each other and not lose their duality) & wh in some wholly inexplicable way, with lightning speed reveals to each the thought of the other in all the freshness, & simplicity & naturalness of their birth, long before they have had time to be clogged, & hampered by conventional phrases; how much better all this is; how much more like friend talking with friend - No no Helen, I'm not so much of a friend to spiritual friendshps as you say I am - they would do very well for spirits but "flesh & blood" must, & always ultimately will have something more substantial; more like itself; & so I have little faith in that communion of spirits which can keep from showing itself the kind offices, the interchanging little things of an every day life - in the protec-tion of the helpless, and the soothing of the weary - No, my dear Helen, I want my friends as truly practical as spiritual friends - as much persons as intellects & hearts - But although personal presence is much more conducive to friendly sympathy than post office privileges, still I wont repine at all at the latter; for I remember with a smile of pleasure, who does me good now, how grateful I suddenly felt for the arrangements of the U.S. Mail when I rec'd yr. first letter from Worcester - & the love of yr. good letters too, my dear Helen, which I assure you grows with each addition to their number, would be a practical denial of such repining- [HR often begins new paragraph by leaving a long space, as here] I told you I could not write last Tues Eve; I was going with Brainerd H. to call at Prof Snell's - I saw there the Miss Clark you spoke of; have met several times this term, & like her pretty well - No that isnt (sic) true; I dont like her at all - She is not at all preposessing in personal appearance -bearing a striking resemblance to a little [cassed?] match box in front of me - both in feature, & figure. She has a mind, I sh'd think, well trained by school discipline, but neither, it seems to me, comprehensive or refined - I should judge very little natural delicacy of sentiment, & a type of conversation wh- exhibits very little cultivation - more of the masculine characteristics; the Graces I reckon, werent present when Miss Clark entered the ranks of humanity - But withal, she has I presume a real good warm heart - in a word - shes what the world calls "a smart, good hearted homely girl" - Perhaps I am not right in my estimation, but this is what she seems to me at present. Do you know anything of her? - I had a very good call at Prof Snells, though they (I mean the old Prof & his wife) are to me plainly just this; prim, proper people - the impersonation of cant - he, mathematics incarnate - she - his converted apostle-

On my way home I called to see my old hostess Mrs Emerson - for you must know that I am not boarding there now - I am sorry I have forestalled [word "telling" is missing] you; but still it is true - I have been boarding at the Hygeian House about a fortnight. I need not tell you the reason of my changing for you know it, or the great reason, already. The ostensible one was the forming of a little party and boarding together - this we thought sufficient, & all went - and although I have anticipated you, still perhaps I have abdicated in yr favor; since the objections to Mrs E's boarding house may be in a measure removed - I shall have a long story to tell you about it when I see you - the trouble it created - the week of heart sickening gossiping which followed - & all this - which has thoroughly disgusted me - I do wish the time would hurry on; I want so much to see you - talk over old scenes, & originate new - but it will come before long & I'll wait patiently as I can-

It wont do to write any more to night it is past one - pleasant dreams to you, my dear good friend - Good night - I'll try and meet you somewhere in dream land, before the prayer bell rings - I hope you wont have to introduce yr.self as ev. Henry

Thursday evening - Here I am again, my dear Helen, seated at my table, & writing to you - I have been reading Shakespeare aloud to some friends at Brainerd Harrington's room until it is now ten o'clock, and I can't deny myself the pleasure of finishing the evening by a talk with you - What a real pleasure it is to me to come back to this sheet; - it brings with it a consciousness that pleases & satisfies me; a consciousness that in writing to you, my dear friend, I can be honest, without fear of being misunderstood - I come back to it with a pleasing satisfaction which makes me happy - very happy in your friendship - and now, as I think of it, how slight a chance it was that makes us friends. I almost tremble with that undefinable doubt which always attends a real unexpected pleasure - a doubt, which we all of us feel, of the reality of our present joy - a momentary tantalizing questioning whether we are in a pleasant reality, or a bewitching dream - whether the pleasure which depends on so slight a chance was not really lost by the failure of that chance - I almost tremble with this fear - Suppose you had not spoken as you did - I could never [have] had those good long talks with you, my dear friend, I could never have had those good long letters either, & we should never have known each other - But no - you did speak - we have talked - we are friends - & I am glad & happy that it is so - I almost feel inclined to quote from "Bobbie" - "Thanks be to God" - it is so - No, Helen, you did not speak too freely in asking me that question "Can the profession of the Law justify an unchristian ambition"? & I answer it with a great deal of pleasure - of course it cannot - & so far to the contrary is the truth, that I have sometimes thought the profession of the ministry would purify & sanctify what would otherwise be an unchristian ambition; for it does seem to me that the full, & comprehensive appreciation of so glorious a calling, in all it's (sic) beauty & grandeur, would so elevate & enoble the whole nature of a man, as to banish all the low selfishness of human nature, & marry him to the divine - and so reciprocal would be the action of the man, & his calling, that while he, with a high & holy ambition, sh'd strive to have it, it would surely give him the highest of all honors - & make him a "king among men", if indeed he were a "priest of God". No; the Law would not justify an unchristian ambition, & the ministry would prevent it's being unchristian in all probabili-ty - at least I sh'd have little faith in the true, native nobility of that man, whose whole being would not be absorbed in a profes-sion wh- draws all it's real characteristics - it's purity - it's sublimity - it's self sacrificing nobility direct from Heaven - But still we are all human - & "it is humanity, to err" - and if the ambition sh'd become unchristian - how would it desecrate a pulpit! - How would he dishonor God, who sh'd found a sermon on the Bible, & then be forever priding himself upon the intellectual superiority of his production! - How unlike the first preach[er] - "the meek & lowly one" -

But, after all, Helen this is not the reason of my hesitating - I would risk all this - for is there not an almighty power wh- would keep me? - They only trouble is I cannot tell what I ought to be - It is a very, very hard thing I assure you - I want to be a minister; & it sometimes seems to me as if my only permanent happiness rested there - still I do seriously question which I ought to be - which I was made for - It is true of every one, at all [word blocked] it is eminently true, I believe, [words blocked] wh are to act in the next fifty years, that they are all made for a certain definite purpose - each with a fixed destiny - Now if I could only find what mine was I sh'd be happy - But this I cannot do - I am totally at a loss - it is hard, hard thing indeed - I have sometimes wished that it was a practice in our state, as it was in old Sparta, for a mother to offer her infant son to the good of the state; & then we sh'd act out our destiny almost perforce - But I am reminded by a sudden thought, that New England Mothers do consecrate their sons to the Glory of God - and that brings me back to the same old vexed question, what really is more for His Glory, & the good of the world? - Tell me, if you can - my dear good friend - it must be decided before long - But I don't think I shall decide just at present - it seems to me the taste was given us as the true judge - I shall be too young to enter upon the study of any profession at once - and perhaps the changing scenes of the next two years, whatever they may be, will develope & reveal to me what my taste & destiny is, and then I can perhaps follow both - we shall see; but it is a fearful question to trust to a fickle future -
But I won't - I was going to say I dont disgrace this sheet by any more egotism, but I believe I must, for I know you like to hear of my plans & purposes - friends always do - And where are you to be next year? But I remember you told me you had ceased planning; given it up as a useless, unsatisfactory pleasure - I haven't - I still keep on building, & building my pet Babels even if I can find no basis for them - It is exceedingly pleasant to me - I have just lauched a floating castle in the Rh[ine.?] I don't know whether I shall ever follow it, or no - By the way did you ever read "Hedges (?) Prose Writers of Germany? - and if so, were you not entranced, & exalted by it's beauty & sublimity? - I have not read "The Wide Wide World" yet, though a copy from Mary Warner is lying on my table now - Do you know the secret about her? I was confidently informed by good authority, that her engagement with Hammond was positively renewed. I do hope [she? he?] shall be happy when she does get settled - & stop poetizing with every one - How sacred must the sentiments of those be who can share them with that "Wide Wide World" - & be conscious of no violated sanctity! - But I am near the end of this page & bid you a hurried "goodbye" to begin my marginal postcripts -

[marginalia begins p.1, fills free space there, w. a few lines on all 9 subsequent pp., then cross writing over much of last page. Some words on first & last pages blocked by tape marks.]:

I wrote, as you requested, to [ ]; have not to Crafo[ ] my acquaintance with him is only in an "official capacity." Ahem! I wrote to an old classmate of mine, [ ] transfered his relation-ship to Yale a year since - this is, in substance what he tells me - Palmer is a young fellow, recommended by his valedictory at Andover, takes, he sh'd judge upon enquiry, although he was not aware of his existence until he rec'd my letter, quite a prominent place in his class - "likes to be engaged in some political manouvering a little of the demagogue in his composition - is not altogether displeased at being placed in a conspicuous position - stands well as a scholar - probably among the best" - This is the description - how does it compare?

I have not been able, as yet, to find out about the professorship you spoke of - but will tell you in my next - By the way - that poem you sent me I liked quite well - especially some passages wh- were marked - the ideas were fine, struck me as well expressed - Isn't he a half prose, & half poetry writer? - Quite a marked composition he seems to me - The sermon you sent, (which I take to be the one which detained him in his study, the evening I spent with you at Albany - and for which detention I remember how grateful I felt) I like exceedingly; especialy his tribute to Kossuth - moderate and guarded - It seems to me that there is too much willingness on the part of many to yield to his eloquence, a foolish, because uncompromising obedience - If we could look upon the sentiments of the world fifty years hence - I wonder what title we sh'd see given to the Hungarian Orator - Fanaticism does not depend so much upon the character, as upon the condition of nerves - If the Crusades had been successful they would not now be called Fanatics - if Geo. Washington had not been successful, he would have been called a Fanatic - the possession of this comprehensive (unauthentical??) title depends upon success, or failure - and if the People of the nineteenth century sh'd see that God had not decreed the freedom of Hungary in the nineteenth - would not Louis Kossuth be a Fanatic? - An enthusiastic, noble, but misguided zealot? - But you see, Helen, I must close, & hurriedly too - for it is [cross writing begins here, & is difficult to decipher] Friday P.M- and the mail is going soon. I am sorry the execution of my wishes occasioned so much disturbance give the little cherub "Bobbie" my love, & when you kissed his mother - tell her that one was from "Henry Fruit"-

Now my dear friend "good bye"- It is rather hard to close this letter, but I must - you'll get it Sat- night- and mind you - dont wait as I have done for a Saturday night - but my dear good friend, send me another of those kind good letters as quick as you can - Remember - -
Again "good bye" - a long pleasant evening to you - & the blessings of St Valentine -

As ever, Helen, yr warm true friend

Henry (w. flourishes)

[second leaf, back & front]:
I see, upon examination that I have let two margins slip by - but I wont be cheated out of them - I thank you for those articles by Mr. Parker - they reveal a depth & earnestness of thought - which we seldom see - but I don't think we would necessarily infer that the author was a practical man - He would inspire by his words, where he would not by his practice - But it is a great virtue to posess in this age of plagiarism his originality of thought - & expression -

HR to HMF Amherst College
April 1st/52

It was a real good letter, my dear good friend, that last of yours, & I wanted to sit right down at once, & answer it. It reached me Tuesday night, just as I was wishing for one - hoping, &, for some reason or other, almost confidently believing one wl'd come. And though it was a little one, & must, from sheer necessity receive only a little answer still it came directly home to me - the beautiful imagery of the first part, the warm friendship of the last - the whole of the little missive, so completely yr'self, came right home to me & took its wonted seat close to my heart, where all the welcome messengers you are sending me are clustering together. Helen, your letters are always just the thing I want - & they always do me so much good - But then that is a trite saying, & I'll not dwell upon it - Still you ask me what sort of friends we sh'd have been next August if we had not known each other as we do - & in answering it, I can't help speaking of yr. letters; for Henry Root wld have been a far different person, I doubt not, without those letters, from what he will be with them - I'm sure I cant see exactly how we should have regarded each other - Perhaps we sh'd have gone on speculating about one another, & talking at each other, rather than really knowing each other, & talking together. I guess we sh'd both have had a pretty good theoretical acquain-tance with each other; & perhaps yes, I think it's quite probable, we sh'd have opened a heavy cannonade of criticism upon one another, pciked out all the deficiencies in each others characters, or at least fancied we had, & gone on without really knowing what sort of persons both of us really were - but still in spite of all tis I hardly think I sh'd have conceived a dislike for you - no - I am certain I should not, for from that memorable Friday night, to which I have referred so often, I was yr. firm, true friend - And what, Helen, makes you think you should have disliked me? (a supremely complacent speech that, itsn't it?) But yet, you know what I mean. What is it in me, wh- you would then have seen, & so, of course, can't now help seeing, & wh- wl'd then have displeased you, & now wont? or would yr. dislike have been one of those unaccountable dislikes, whose origin we never see, but whose influence we cant help feeling? I don't think, however, either of us wl'd have ever conceived such a dislike towards each other; I guess we cl'd have accounted for whatever feelings we might have cherished don't you think so? - - However this is all speculation, thank heaven, & I trust we shan't dislike each other - So it seems, a week from today, & you'll start on your trip; I'm real glad you are going, but I sh'd love to see you before you go - The fact is, Helen, I have no other friend like you - none other whom I talk as I do with you - they are all different - I'm not so honest with them as I am with you - & honesty is always an essential to anything like a friendship - & in proof of it I'm going to be just as honest as ever & tell you what it was that made me so sad when I wrote you that letter - I have been feeling pretty badly for a long time at intervals, when ever I have thought over seriously my college course - Oh! how full of errors it has been - how much more I ought to have done than I have really done - & isn't it an awful thing to be able to do, & then do not - The one great trouble with me has been that the consciousness of ability has satisfied me - rather than the display, or rather exercise, of ability - My ambition has been for the sense of power, rather than for the exercise of power - When I have been confident that I could do a thing, I have stopped there & failed to resolve I will do it - I have measured myself by powers possessed, rather than by powers exerted; by duty that cl'd be done; not by duty done; & so when I have had this honest consciousness, it has satisfied me - that is to say: selfishness, self-love has ruled me rather than stern sense of duty - It is such a thought as this, in part, wh- has made me feel sad; and ought it not to make (me) feel so? Of course it ought - I would love to see you, Helen, & have another good bye talk - it wl'd do me so much good - it wl'd be so pleasant But I can't till August, & I wish the time wl'd hurry on - But I see I am nearly through this sheet, & I must hasten to close - I am very busy now; getting ready for another Exhibition; writing lettrs to all sorts - Musical Clubs &ct - & so I can't write any more - One other thing however; you asked me about Emmons in one of yr last letters - who he was - His sister married Mr. Tappan, I believe, the minister at Charlestown whose church Miss Tufts attends - he is a very fine fellow & is more & more my friend - But, Helen, "God bye" I shall look for yrs. in a little while, & then shall "wait" the arrival of those chance messages you are going to send me - how welcome they are - Please tell me, if you will, in yr. next, where I shall call upon yr. sister Annie - I shall go to Boston, in a few weeks. - I wish you were to be there - But good night, & "good bye, my dear good friend."
& believe me, as ever, [ ]
yr. warm, true faithful friend
Henry -

Do write me soon, & write me often, if you will, while on yr trip - I shall want them & wait for them, I assure you-

As ever yr friend


HR to HMF Greenfield May 1/52.

It seemed to me, my dear friend, almost as if I saw you this afternoon in the pages I was reading; the good words of yr. kind letters were so characteristic, so much yourself, that they brought you up before me, & made me wish again for the hundredth time that I could really see you, face to face, & have another of those memorable talks. Oh! how much good their memory does me. You don't know how dear a friend you are to me Helen, & how much I rely upon yr friendship (,) how often I think of you, & wish I could see you - When will that much longed for August come? I dreamed last night it had come, but that in looking over that big church at A_ I couldn't find you. However you know we are told dreams are realities reversed, and so my hopes have gained new strength, & I'm longing more courageously than ever for the return of those dear old days.

There - all this is rather a blunt beginning to my letter, I know; but still it is what I had in mind and consequently what I send to you - It wl'd have been in place, perhaps, in writing to another after so long a silence, to have prefaced my epistle with some formal phrases, or other, but not so to you, Helen. When friends are honest & true it seems better fun, even if it be not politic, to set right down & trnascribe you very self, & send it on to yr. friend, just as it is, & let them look in, & through you - Isn't a nutual honesty the indispensable of a friendship, the cardinal virtue of a true life? Then if it be friendship, & nothing else that men are seeking, if the worlds wealth & power & fame, are out of the way, then let the worlds wisdom, & chicanery, & concealment be all vanished together, & let us be honest & true -Perfect honesty is positively essential to perfect friendship. Perhaps we can't attain such a friendship, while we are human, & have humanities weaknesses; still it seems to me the more honest two friends are, the more nearly they attain to a complete mutual consciousness, so much the more intimate & free their friendship - The highest friendship is when duality is lost, & unity begins - Now the one great characteristic of unity is individual conscious-ness; & is not therefore a thorough mutual consciousness indispens-able to the highest friendship. Let there be a reciprocal acknow-ledgement, a giving up of the heart's secrets, an honest confession perhaps of those little petty foibles, wh- ones pride would not let him barter to the world for its birthright, let there be such a thorough acquaintance, & then will be friendship - We have an instance of such a friendship in the relations one may sustain to God. It is this same consciousness that you are fully known, just as you are, your self, all your weaknesses, which makes an honest prayer such a deep, full, satisfying pleasure; it is perfect friendship, because you delight in being known & trusting - I am aware we could not have many such friends; one wl'd be enough - & toward all others we would cherish benevolence in gradation proportional to the intimacy of the acquaintance - But is not the sanctity of such a friendship satisfying? - But a truce to these theories, on to the practical - How I wish I could see you - There: I have come back to my starting point - a good many things have happened since I last wrote you, my dear friend, & I'll tell you about some of them -

We glided nicely through our Exhibition & had some splendid music - by the "Mendelsohn [_____] Club" of Boston; have you ever heard them? _ They played more finely than any company I ever heard; exquisite airs from the best operas;- & they manifested a refinement of taste we rarely meet with in the country - I presume you have heard them in the rehearsal of the Musical [____]- The Friday after the term closed I went to Boston, & on Sat. morning walked up to Winter St to visit yr. dear good sister "Annie; (") She recognized me at once. She was just going into school, & so I saw her but a moment, hoping to meet her again; but when I called she had gone to Charlestown & so I missed [it?]; I was very sorry, for I wanted to see her very much - I had a very pleasant time, & made one or two pleasant acquaintances. Gorham Train's sister, whom, by Thursday I liked quite well, & Miss Helen Choate; do you know either of them? The latter decidedly pleased me - She manifested a great liking for some things, & a great dislike for others; was quite congenial, & peculiar; seemed to understand herself, & her surroundings & is quite accomplished, and a musical enthusiast; her personal appearance, I forgot to mention, is not particularly prepossing to me - but on the whole I liked her very much indeed -

But I find by looking at my watch it is getting late, & I must close - I wonder, Helen, where you are to-night - tired, I suppose, wherever you are - so, good night, & pleasant very pleasant dreams - Yrs. as ever, H____

What a beautiful, beautiful Sabbath night this is, Helen: you are admiring it, I know you are. How I do wish I could see you - There it is again; that same old, worthless wish that has risen involuntarily so many, many times; I can't keep it back though - it will come especially with so splendid a moon, as that which is shining through my window to-night. It brings up so vividly all those old associations, the dear memories of by-gone days, & inspires so many pleasant hopes -I haven't heard from you for a long time, my dear Helen; how impatiently I'm waiting; when will another of your good letters come? The last you told me of yrself was from that notorious City of "brotherly love". What a commentary on human nature is the application of "Philadelphia" to such a city - how its inconsistencies stare us in the face - I wonder if I ever quoted to you or if you have ever seen, in Whipple's essay, a sentence like this, when he attributes the origin of the ludicrous to "that everlasting contradiction between our acts & aspira-tions, wh- makes our ideas a perpetual satire upon our deeds and institu-tions" - Isn't it a forcible truth finely expressed? What a delicate selection of terms, & how readily you recognize it as an old friend -

By the way, how far may this power of recognition be trusted in writing, & talking, & painting? Certain it is it can be trusted a great ways. And what a pleasure it is to feel no necessity of amplification; to be, in a certain sense, freed from the restrainto of works, & able to see the whole of yr. thought mrrored back from the mind of yr. friend, almost before its shadow has reached him - it is almost spirit talking with spirit, & is the peculiar privilege of great Geniuses & deep friends - There is to me a fascinating mystery in the spirit life that's all around, & within us - I wish we knew more of it - if we did I believe we sh'd- find a much shorter distant separates two friends, than seems to the eye of sense -

But I didnt mean to write any to night when I came up to my room & so I'll stop where I am - Still I can't help thinking of you on such a noble night as is this, & always, Helen, with the warmest wishes for yr. welfare -

Good night, my dear, good friend - sleep sweetly in the consciousness that you have done much permanent good to me who will never fail to be a grateful, earnest friend - "Good night" H___

Tis Monday night, & here I am my dear friend, to finish this letter, & say one or two more words before I send it on its uncertain journey - for I'm sure I dont know where its going to - I keep wondering all the while where it will reach you - how I'd love to take a peep to=night into yr. room - wherever it may chance to be - What light reading are you indulging in at present? for I can't imagine the dust of railway cars to be very congenial to severe application. Have you read "Uncle Tom's Cabin" yet, & do you like it? I have been reading today some of "Charley Lambs" letters; those warm, beautiful letters he used to write- What a capital Companion he must have made; that honed wit, & warm heartedness of his must ave won everybody - I love to take him up at intervals, & satisfy myself with his shrewd sociability - I have waded through the "Wide, Wide World," & must confess have made a somewhat unsatisfactory journey - there is nothing that very deeply interests me in such a story; I always feel like saying of it, what the boarder said of his landlady's table, "very good, what there is of it; not but that there's enough of it, such as it is" - By the way, I suppose you know Prof Fowler has gone to Europe, Emily has shut up the house, is boarding at Miss Sarah Ferry's & is going somewhere, I don't remember where, to spend the summer - Oh! what a home Prof F's must be! it does seem too bad, that in a family, where if anywhere in the wide world, all deceit, & dishonesty ought to be shut out, there sh'd be so much that is totally inconsistent with the very idea of family shame; strange compounds we sometimes meet with in this world don't we? Now March is better & is coming north in a few months, though it doesn't seem to me he'll ever fully recover from so violent an attack -

Old Amherst, Helen, is sliding on just as quietly as ever. Old Mrs. Moore lives still her hermits life, & I must confess to a sudden twinge at the thought I haven't been to see her but once this long winter. However, I have been quite busy with my studies, or rather with writing all this long term, & so I must claim full pardon - we are hoping for the hurrying on of those summer months with a great deal of pleasure. July will bring Sue Gilbert back, & I am [here marginal writing begins, starting w. p.1] longing to see her, I assure you. I do think her a very fine girl indeed; & August will bring you, my dear, good friend - can't you hurry on the time a little? - it drags slowly to me- And still theres a little feeling of sadness comes over me every time I think of closing my College Course; how much more might I to have done than I have done - dissatisfaction is rather an unwelcome companion I assure you - You spoke sometime since of the appointment I shall take - & in spite of tr. decided aversion to it I susect it must be the Salutatory - I am sorry for yr. sake, & I may say somewhat for my own too; for I ought to have done better; still the past, is past, & bury it - if you can -

Helen, I want to thank you for yr. last, kind note; it did me very much good, & made me very much happier. I have had some sad days within a few past months, & yr. good letters so full of truth, so characteristic of yr.self, so full of kind offers of friendship; oh! they are indeed welcome; how welcome I cant tell you- They have come to be almost essential; things apart from the rest of the world; little visitors which come where no others can come, & go where no others go. They are more intimate friends than the others I meet with every day; truer, dearer, more congenial than any, & all others; I am awaiting their coming always with the same earnest welcome & I want August to come that I may thank you again for them - Oh Helen, I have fully decided to teach next year, though where, & what I cannot tell - Do you know anything about "Springfield Institute"? An acquaintance of mine from Williams College taught there I believe a few years since, though I know not a thing about the Institution myself, or any of its arrangements - If you can tell me anything about it in yr. next, I wish you would- And when will yr. next come? before long I do hope - You are to travel three weeks more, & then to Albany again. I hope this letter will reach you before long but I fear a little for its progress. But it is late & I must close it; wherever it finds you it will bring with it, let me tell you, the honest assurances of warm friendship -
Good night & good bye Helen
& let me hear from you
very soon -

Now as ever -
Sincerely yrs-


HR to HMF Amherst College-
May 28/52
My dear, good friend -

Yr. note has just reached me - I have been looking, & waiting day after day, & all in vain until this afternoon, on my way to college, I went out to the P.O. & found yr. good messenger; oh! wasn't it a welcome one!

I took it up to the shady steps of that big, old church, & read it so thoughtfully; & then instead of going on to college, I have come back to my room & am seated at my window, answering it with a full heart, I'll assure you - I can't stop here to tell you how full of beauty (I mean of scenery) Amherst is now, for I want to tell you at once that instead of forgetting, or failing to write you, I mailed a letter a long while ago, precisely in accordance with your directions; a letter too of some ten or a dozen pages; but those "atrociously irregular mails" have monopolized it all - However I will hope it has reached you ere this, & proved to you that neither disinclination or circumstances prevented me from writing - but even if it has not, I shall risk another long one, for the simple reason that I want to write myself out, & can do it to no one as I can to you, my dear Helen. I want to tell you how glad I am that you are my friend; how happy all your good letters make me, & what a dear friend you are - What a commentary on a selfish, trading world is the origin of that word "dear" when applied to a friend; isn't it complete "bunker"-? as if I had given so much for yr. friendship, & paid down a "dear" price - Well, I must confess, I have given something for it; for you have all my friendship - full, free, & earnest, whatever it's worth; & I'll try to make up in quantity what it lacks in quality - So you've been travelling all this long while, as fast as ever you can, & are now - where? I wonder; no matter where; but wherever you are, I trust the warm wishes I've just given to the breeze will reach you - Oh! Helen, I want August, in spite of all the sadness it's prospect brings, I want it sh'd hurry on - I do so hope Mrs Peabody will retain her plans this summer, & I shall have the pleasure of retaining some rooms for you at the "Hygeian" - The prospect is almost too good; do realize it, if possible -"I may rely upon your being here (if I care anything about it)" Thank you - but, of course, I don't - It hasn't been the one pleasant prospect for a long, long year! it hasn't been the one thing that has made so many hours, otherwise of sadness, pleasant, very pleasant ones! I haven't dreamed it all over, and over! Oh no! not at all - what made you put that in Helen? Was it an excessive modesty, or thoughtlessness? - But never mind. I know you believe me -

How I wish I could take a short walk with you to=night - I'd neglect that "Sociable" thats "coming off" at the President's - & instead of talking with one and another, for whom I care just a snap of the finger thats holding this pen, I'd have a long, long talk with a very dear friend - There's no one here I want to talk with long; though they do for a little while, & then ________! [his dash] however Sue Gilbert is to be here in a few weeks, & then I'll have a good time, if possible - Jenny Hitchcock was at home day before yesterday, & in the evening she very kindly took a little drive with me. On a great many accounts I like her very much; somehow, or other there's something that prevents a thoroughly satisfying talk with her; I don't know what it is -

But I can't write any more now; the bell will ring for lecture in a few minutes, & I must look over my notes - I'll talk with you again I hipe before long - but for the present, good bye, & God bless you - Henry -

It is now Sat. P.M. my dear Helen, & I'm ready to chat a little while longer with you. I meant to have added to this letter last night; but tht "Sociable" took up all my time till ten; then I walked and talked with "Vaughan Emmons" till eleven; & a Cambridge Student joined us till nearly twelve; & then, I came to the very unsentimental conclusion that I'd better go to bed; but now for a talk till prayer time.

I wish you could have seen the gathering last night at the Doctor's - I couldnt help thinking, as I stood leaning against the door, & commenting, inwardly upon the striking peculiarities of the Scene, that if "Dickens" were only there, & would write a faithful description of it, it would make one of the funniest stories of the age. What stiffness of formality, & conceited precision of style! how everybody seemed to roll themselves with individual lumps of self=consciousness! how completely satisfied everybody seemed to be that the peculiar notions of this little village were just the thing that, above all others, the world ought to know & abide by; there were courtesies that threatened a seat upon the cellar floor; & bows that would have endanged their performers heads, had not the almost entire absence of contents removed all fear of a loss of equilibrium. I talked with Mrs. Prof Tyler a little while, & she tried to be a little sarcastic in telling me "that she'd not seen me for a long time, but trusted I'd formed more agreable company" & then shouldering all the dignity she could muster beat a glorious retreat into the arms of the Prof; whereat I cried "Oh! Mrs Tyler"! & recovered from the shock - however I have forgiven her with a commendable magnaminity. There were hosts of other things, Helen, as unsatisfying to me in person, as they would doubtless be to you in perusal, & so I'll say just nothing about them.

But this is something I am going to tell you of, about myself, in wich I know you'll take a little interest; & that is, my location next year. I told you in my last that I was going to teach a year or two, & now I'll tell you that there's just the barest possibility that I may teach in N. York. I rec'd a letter a sort time since from a Mr. Nank(?) an acquaintance of mine, & a graduate of "Williams", who is now supplying Dr. Robinsons place in "Un. Thyeol. Sem", & who has taught at "Springfield"- He told that there might possibly be an opening there, & perhaps in some other institution; that he had spoken to Mr. Abbott about it, & would make further enquires &ct &ct. Now I am going on to N. York in my next vacation (in four weeks) & see what are the prospects; if there are any & good ones, I shall be there next year, right close to my sister; wont it be fine - if - it turns out well? - Still, as you see, that is a great big if, & I fear it will always be - perhaps not - How do you think I shall like teaching? I want to try very much indeed for a year or two, & then - bits all uncertin after that. I am just as undecided as ever what to do; perhaps I shant do a thing, all my long, or short life, whichever it's to be. You said something about the Sciences, Helen; I never had the slightest fancy to any of them; not the least love in the world for one of them. I never shall find my place there, I know - I think a wee bit of a pulpit on the cape would be more congenial - I wonder what originates, by the way, that funny fancy of yrs. that yr. good friend the Lieut. & myself, are to meet within a year; but wouldn't I like to see him; you don't know how much I do want to see him - No, Helen, I never sh'd have thought of charging you with "being in love", had you not cautioned me against it; nor shall I do so now; for I expect you to tell me of it at once; just as soon as that thing, shall I call it? happens to you. I shall look for the same frankness as ever, even then. I think I hear you saying, "Well; I guess he'll get it." Oh! Helen how I do wish I could see you! there it is again; right out, that same old fruitless wish of mine. Well; unavailing as it is, it does me good to utter it - thats the simple reason of my doing it. That same letter of mine, wh- perhaps you have not seen, told you of my seeing yr. sister Annie; she recognized me at once, & I wanted to have a long talk with her, but she was at Charleston when I called, & I was obliged to leave the next morning, & so I missed it - But I can't write any more now; the evening prayer bell will ring soon. I wish this could reach you to night; (Sat) you like them then - I do so wonder where you are now. But "good bye" for the present - H____

One more little short chat with you to=night (Sab) Helen, & then I'll send this letter on its hazardous journey. We have had our new Prof. Jewett to preach to=day; & he preached finely too; he reminded me a very little bit of the idea I have formed of what yr. noble father was. I was looking over his life a few days since; of such it would be a formality for me to say, it intensely interested me. Oh, it is the lives of such men that adorn the ministry, & make it such a noble profesion in the eyes of the world. That unselfish devotion to so noble a cause gives that calling a peculiar, & unearthly grandeur. And still it seems to me as if it must be attended by very strong, & peculiar temptations; what conflicting emotions must a minister, who retains anything of human nature, be subject to - Self sacrifice, & ambition; devotion to the cause, & devotion to self - "who is sufficient for these things." But my dear Helen, this last bit of the letter must not be taken up by speculation about professional life, though I must tell you one thing more about myself. I had an application a few days since to go to Pensacola Fa. & teach twelve or fourteen boys, the sons of some [marginalia begins] naval officers at the station there; I was almost inclined to accept the offer, & sh'd have been very strongly in favor of it had it not been for the prospects at N. York. I wrote home about it, and you ought to have seen the letters from the united three; all of them, of course, most strongly opposed to the measure - What do you think of it?- Would you go?-

How long, Helen, will it be before I have another of yr. good letters? - Can't I have one before you return to Albany? That you say is to be in June; the 20th. Well I shall try & (relieve?) you then with a letter - & shall hope to get one from you before that. That poem of W.W. Parkers reached me a week or two since, & I like it very much; thanks to you for sending it. What are you reading now? I am looking over Cor___o? at chance intervals, but not really reading any thing of the lighter cast. Prof Jewett gave an address before the literary Societies a week ago; he reviewed Prof Shedd's Address on the beautiful; I wish you could have heard it; you would have liked it I think, very much. There was a freshness & an earnestness aobut it that pleased me exceedingly; he has a decided vein of satire in his composition; & though it be a characteristic wh- makes a great many foes, it is always sure to make some friends; there is something fascinating in the exhibition of the power or at any rate, in its possession; nor do I think it simply a want of the most controlling benevolence - one thing is very certain, and that is when you meet one of great satirical power, you always meet an original thinker, & an independent man; one who is thoroughly an individual - By the way, Helen, have you ever seen that address of Prof Shedd's, to which he paid such admirable attention last August? I hardly think you have, & shall endeavor, I think, to send you one - for, in spite of the withering review it has received, it was a freely written production - But, my dear friend, I have no more room, & must close - Write me, Helen, as soon as you can & want to; for yr. good letters are more and more welcome - they are what they ever have been, my very best friends - But, good bye, my dear Helen -
As ever sincerely yrs.

P.P.S. Don't fail to write me soon; think of me "waiting" - Oh! if you could only see Amherst now; it is perfectly beautiful - But then, you'll come soon - H.

HR to HMF Amherst College - July 10th 1852 -

Oh! my dear Helen; what a crowd of wild, wild thoughts are washing through my brain to-night - following each other in the most confused succession & they all originate in, & carry them-selves back to you - My head & heart are all alive with the strangest, wildest thoughts imaginable - I have been guestioning what to do! I know I can't go to sleep now, & so I'll sit down & rest myself by writing - no dull formal congratulations Helen; not at all - but a deep, full, earnest response to yr. deep, full earnest letter - & cl'd you have heard the honest, heart full "God bless her" wh- fell from my lips when I finished reading it, you would not doubt it met with such a response at once - I confess I was not a little surprised, not a little sorry, and very glad - all together - to read the message of yr. letter - I am surprised - I am sorry - but I am, I am very glad - But I see it is utterly impossible to give you faintest idea of my self to night - I can't tell you at all how I feel - but I am full - full of earnest friendship - (yes, Helen, I'll not scratch that out) and full of earnest prayers - I wanted to tell someone of it - I couldn't keep it all to myself, & so, under the most sacred secrecy I communi-cated the fact to Sue Gilbert - Did I (do) wrong? no - I know you'll not say so - but if you do you'll forgive it - I couldn't help it - Yes, Helen, may God bless you, & make the rest of yr. little life the fullest, noblest realization of yr. noblest, best ideal - Theories, with you, have ended - facts have begun - begun in earnest - a new life has sprung up before you - a wilder, broader life than you have ever known - Oh! may it be a happy one! - may it be ever full - full of honest, earnest joy - not tumult-uous - not spasmodic - may it be a deep, quiet, constant content-ment - for this, I know, is the best wish I can give you - go on, my dear friend, loving, & being loved - & as I jog on alone, for, God only knows, how long?, if it will add at all to yr almost perfect happiness to know, for an unquestionable certainty, that that (sic) you have the constant friendship, aye, the deep, full, thoughtful friendship of one who will be somewhere working, rest assured, that the friend you made a twelve month since, will continue to be, as he ever has been, a firm, faithful friend - will
esteem that friendship one of his greatest pleasures, & will thank God, that he has even known you - I know it is a great step on ones journey - a fearful step - wh- has to do with eternity, as well as time - with heaven as well as earth; but I know too who my friend is; & I am thoroughly content - Go on, Helen, loving, & learning for a long, & happy life time -

I don't know how this will sound when it is read - perhaps supremely ridiculous - but you wont think it such - at any rate it is just myself to-night, & I shall send it to you as it is - I can hardly stop talking about it here - I almost want to (___?)- but I wait - I'll wait till I see you - and then - will you have more to tell me? - _____ _________ [his lines] It is Sat- night to night - I reached Amherst from N. York to day, & have been down to see Sue Gilbert - but I saw her alone only just a minute, & employed that in telling her, as I told you above - so I hardly know how her year at Baltimore has affected her; I sh'd think her the same "Sue" she was when she left - talented, & warm hearted as ever - Isn't she good? - I wish you knew her better - I'm sure I wish I did - I am betting (?) on some long talks with her soon & will find out - if possible, more of her -

But 'tis pretty late, & now I'll close for the present - "Good night", Helen - a quick sleep, & pleasant dreams, in the conscious-ness of a pure, holy love -
As ever - Henry

[A sense that there may have been another sheet, as the marginalia kicks in in mid-thought]:
"that I wasnt aware I was perpetrating till I was half through it, & then I had such a good, hearty laugh over its ridiculousness, that I thought I'd write it out, that you might laugh also - Thats perfectly like myself - such funny changes! there I was, growing very sentimeantal, & pathetic & all at once shot off on to that silly rhyme - "so goes it always" - a ceaseless commingling of contrarities - constitutes my inconsistent character - Well then! if there isnt another proof of it in that specimen of alliteration I had evidently better stop just where I am - "Good bye" my dear good friend; the best of every good thing be thine -

Ever yr. fi??n. faithful friend


HR to HMF [this fragment is last page of letter dated July 10, 1852]

Here it is, Monday morning, my dear friend, Monday morning! - the most practical, unpoetical, unsentimental portion of the whole calendar, & yet I am seated at my table to finish a letter to a young lady! Well, Helen, there's one thing quite fortunate about it, the peculiar circumstances of the case make the practicality a pardonable one, & render all illtimed suspicions null, & void -What would the world say now of it's suspicions if it ever had any - I want to see you very much, & hear you tell me - about ---- well - yr. journey etc. etc-

So it seems you will really come to Amherst & to Mrs. E's - Well, I am after all glad of it; for I do think - all things considered, that you would enjoy yr-self more than elsewhere - It is such a hot, busy, bustling time here at Commencement, that any retirement of a private boarding house is quite a luxury - Oh! Helen, the appointments are given out, & mine is the Salutatory it's quite too bad I think in considera(tion) of the fact that it doesn't suit the task of either you or myself; but to tell the plain truth, I strongly suspect they didn't consult either of us particularly in regard to the matter - I expected I should feel very badly about it, when I really knew by official information; but I had become so used to the thought that the fearful blow fell quite lightly - so lightly, that I was hardly conscious thereof, & I am as light hearted as you please - One thing troubles me, & I will trouble you with it only just one minute - that is, my future - I cant decide what to do - I shall teach next year; where, I dont know; & all after that is _____ - a blank - at present. However, let it go; I have said enough to you about it & I'll say no more -

Yr. letter was dated the 3d of July - over a week since: but I did not get it till night before last; I told you, you remember, I was in N. York, & so the letter waited for me; were it not for this, it would have met with an earlier answer. While I was gone, & in N. York I thought of you very often; & was of half a mind to jump on to a boat & go up to Albany, & see if I cl'd force an answer to my letter; but at last I concluded not to. Were you there I wonder at that time?

Oh! by the way; where does yr. friend Miss Abbott live? is it in Union Place? I went up there to see Mr. A. in reference to teaching, & I thought perhaps I was near yr. friend - I may possibly, though I shall not probably, teach there, next year. If there sh'd be an opening, I cl'd get it I think - I am quite desirous of teaching there next year, since my sister will be there, I presume, part of the time, & I feel the need of a change from a small country town life, to a larger, more expanding one; I hope I may succeed.

I have just cast my eye upon my table, & seen that little match box you gave me; what a power the little woman has over past scenes; she has been a very pleasant, & faithful friend to me for a long year past; she has suggested very many pleasing, satisfying thoughts to me, that have done me good. Oh! what a funny time that was! Strange, & true! it did me a whole world of good, (don't that sound very school girl like) & it will ever be remembered. The ride to Holyoke, that night of "many(?) watching for the morning", no, no! for it wasn't such entirely to me; but all those old scenes come crowding back together, very often, & make me very happy.

But, Helen, I must write no more. I am very busy indeed; havent done the slightest thing for Commencement & am all in a hurry about other things.

I hope I shall see you soon, & then letter writing won't be needed - I wont urge upon you my requests for an immediate reply, as I always have done, because I know how it will be with you; but if you get a leisure hour, & chance to think of me, why put yr. thoughts on paper, & send them on - quick-lee!!! here! - Helen, there's a specimen of poetry [letter discontinued]

HR to HMF Greenfield, Monday night Sept 21 - 1852.

What do you suppose I have been thinking about for a long while to-night, my dear Helen? I won't tell you, but leave you to guess - if you can -

Yr. kind letter reached me by this morning's mail, & right glad was I to get it, I assure you - I had been looking, & looking, day after day, in vain for it, till I had grown weary in "waiting" - I had not the slightest doubt as to "who owed a letter" - for you'll remember you carefully enjoined upon me not to read yr. last little note as anything but a "drop in", & so I was anxiously awaiting the arrival of a more comprehensive missive - but all in vain 'till to day - At last, however, it has come - so a truce to repinings, & with many honest thanks for it, as to an answer -

And so you are as busy as possible "getting ready." Well - I wld like very much to stop in for just one moment & see you hard at work - and ---have one more good talk - for you must know I have been talking "small talk" to night with women of dreadfully diminutive minds - It is hard work - the hardest I have to do now, this making yrself intensely entertaining to women (forgive the misapplication of the noble name) who are frightened at the faintest shadow of an idea, & can talk of nothing save the most common place little things - However it's fated --- & it's well I suppose -Henry

Helen, I broke directly off, & determined not to write another word that night, at any rate - Could you, do you think, by any possible exercise of yr imagination divine the reason of this abrupt close? - It is now Tuesday night, & I'll talk a little while with you - - I comfort my self wishing, at this instant, that I cld see you "face to face" - & now, the next, am wishing that at any rate, I had yr. daguerreotype - Aren't you going to let me have it, Helen - I do want it, very, very much - If you do, conclude to, you may send it to Greenfield, since I don't know whe I shall see you again - That reminds me of my plans - I am to teach at Bloomfield N.J. in a boarding school for boys - commencing the first of November - So you see I have a long, tedious vacation to pass through before I shall be again really at work - I am somewhat at a loss here to employ my time - for, I must confess it drags rather heavily - You are going to NY. this week? I wish it cld. be so arranged that I cld. meet you there - but it probably cannot - Upon what day, & which way will you go? - And you will see "Annie"? How much I shd like to see her - I had heard of the engagement through a postscript to a note of Sue's to Jane & was consequently quite anxious to find out if it were indeed true - Well, Helen, after all it surprised me very much indeed - I cld. hardly believe the announcement, & when I did bring myself at last to as calm a comprehension of the facts as was possible, oh didn't it awaken strange , strange thoughts - of a past - & a future. Oh, my dear Helen what a queer world this is - & what wild thoughts we sometimes have about it, don't we? - & what strange resolutions we can sometimes catch ourselves making - it is all mystery - thank God, the future is forever a mystery - but I have ceased to wonder at it's unfoldings, for I believe "all things are possible"

You wanted I shd tell you about Sue & myself - our talks &ct - well, I will - We had quite a pleasant time, in many respects, though you know I was not thinking of any thing she knew about while she was here - It was a little unfortunate perhaps that the [ministerial??] frown was so manifest on that one occasion of wh. I spoke in a former letter - though I shd do her the justice to say that she said very little against you - what it was - I cannot tell, from lack of memory, & the idea of it all you have now, as well as myself - I will give you what I remember - viz. that "an uncharitable woman" doesn't suit our friend - "The full of these remarks &ct &ct" -

Oh Helen I do so want yr daguerreotype - when shall I get it? - Won't you write me very soon, before you go to N. York, if possible, & tell me to look for it at once? - Helen - have I said all I wanted to in this letter? Goodnight -

[marginalia]: Now, my dear Helen, write me as soon as you find time, won't you? - Again - Good night - & "good bye" -
As ever yrs. Sincerely


[all of the below cross-written on pp.3&4):

P.S. Tis Wed. noon, & Im going to add just a little bit of a postscript before I send this - I do want very much to see you, my dear Helen, & am half inclined to get up a little business for N.Y- & thus bring it about - You are going to see yr. dear friend Jennie again. I want to meet her very much - I called at Mr. Abbott's while I was in N.Y. but he had not returned - and what do you think it was about - I had the very best idea imaginable of a pet school that I so so long to realize, & was going to talk with Mr. A__. about it. It was this - viz - to get a few boys, perhaps twenty five, & have a nice little school on my own, individual "hook". Study much & &ct &ct, & in the course of a few years go to Germany, & it occurred to me Mr. A's recommendation & perhaps advice, if he wld give it, wld be worth more in that line than any other man's - But he was absent, & so it has fallen through for the present, though I haven't given up the idea yet - I have been out on a most delightful drive this morning of about eighteen miles - what do you suppose I then put about? --- Helen, did you ever read the "Awakening"? - don't forget to tell me in yr. next - But you see I must close -

Again, good bye, my dear good friend - Don't fail to write me very soon, will you, and believe me, as ever, yr. true, earnest friend -
Henry - -
P.S. Don't count the "I's" in this letter!!!

HR to HFJ Bloomfield N.J. December 14 - 52.

Very like a dear old friend from a distant land came that messanger of yrs. to-day Helen; how welcome, you can't imagine; but let me tell you one thing, & that is this; some way must be contrived to keep yr. future letters out of my hands until after school closes - This one reached me at recess, this afternoon; & to tell the honest truth, as I always do when I write to you, you know, it nearly upset me, & quite unfitted me for the remaining duties of the day - It threw me (how the "I's" & "me's" begin to count up already) into one of those old-fashioned reveries, & it was hard work to get back - I called up a class in History & after they had exhausted their patience waiting for me, was roused again by one of them asking Mr. Root! if he'd hear the History class - & when I did look up, & ask for a book the little urchins were gazing at me with such a bewildered, & enquiring earnestness, that I actually blushed - all this, every bit of it, my dear friend, must be charged to you. And a pretty heavy charge it is too, I assure you; for you can't possibly imagine how perfectly inharmon-ious is the chain of old associations, with my present hum drum monotonous life - Helen, if I could by any possible combination of [two words illegible] carry to yr. mind the barest notion of what constitutes mine, at present, & I do wish I could, if I could just let you look in & bring yr. peculiar power of analysis to bear on the mysterious commingling of emotion, & sentiment, wh- I hardly know whether to call myself, or not, you would see how radically different is my life this year, from my life last, & I sh'd find out through you just where I stand, & what I am - As it is, though, I confess myself staggered - had thought that no change of condition, either mental or physical, would so throw me from my bearings that I could not for myself determine my mental where-abouts(.) But I am now fairly in fog. I seem to have left one life, & entered on another; just as distinct & different from the former as two lives possibly can be; & your letter to-day did really seem like a messenger from a better land; a land full of charms for me, but ah - somehow or other I sense mysteriously to have left -And this isn't all fancy, its fact, Helen, fearful fact too, I sometimes think - But I can't tell you anything about it in a letter - if I were sitting by yr. side, just as we used in those dear old days that are yonder in the dim distance, growing dimmer too each day as we grow older & the memory of them makes the tears come back again, then would I take yr. hand in mine & pour out my soul into yr. ears, as I can to no other mortal - Ah! Helen God knows it has been a strange, strange friendship this of ours - & perhaps not the least of its strange features, is this writing as I am to=night - But it does me good, & it can do you no harm - I wish I could tell you more plainly & definitely in this letter about myself; I wish almost I could give you an exact picture of my heart; for to tell the truth I have been so much in the habit for the year past of making you a sort of father-confessor to my spirit that it's hard to hold back, & keep to myself the burden I was wont to throw off so freely -

But I am telling you all about myself, & nothing about my surroundings & do you like this? Yes I guess you do; for I know I would far rather know a little story of yr. inner life, than a long volume of yr. accidents - And I was thinking the other day whether we did not become more and more indifferent to externals, & care more & more for the spiritual, the nearer we come to the spirit world; so that by and by changes will comparatively lose their influence over us, & so the seperation (sic) of body & spirit in fact begin perchance long before the consumation - But these are leading questions, & I shall get to theorizing again - so I'll stop it at once - ______ [his line] Helen, I haven't written you for a long while, till to=night; let me tell you why - First I waited, & waited after writing my last (& do tell me, don't forget it - did you get it; & (remember?) tell me whether you ever got one that I wrote to you when you were at Amherst, & wh- you ran away from, to Boston) till (I hope you'll breathe easily after that parenthesis) till I received yrs. dated at Baltimore - Since that time, until the present I have been either busy or sick, & so time has glided by - And now I have written you five pages & have said hardly one word of a long letter I might yet write. Let me give you now before I bid you "good bye", a little bit of a journal - When I met you at Springfield I was direct from Amherst. There was a meeting of A.D.P. the night before, & a gathering of old college mates; a sad pleasure it was too - It chanced to be the day of their "Annual County Fair", or rather, to strip it of it's sham dignity, "Cattle Show" - There was a dinner at "Howes Hotel" in honor of the occasion at wh- the ladies were present - I partially availed myself of E.F's hospitality, & had a few talks - called on a few of the Amherst girls, indulged in some sad, & bitter reflections - found that the "oak wreath" had been wittlessly(?) destroyed by the washerwoman, & bid the old College "good bye" again - Here I am how; actually working my way in the world; I would like to go on & talk but I can't to=night, for it is late, & I must go to bed -
Will you not write me soon again my dear Helen? it will do me good - "Good bye" again; & in the same old way & with the same deep earnestness God bless you - & yours -
As ever Henry -

HR to HFH [undated, attached letter of 14 Dec. 1852. Note that HHJ married Lieut. Hunt on 28 Oct. 1852]:

I have not been to Amherst since I saw you at Springfield - the day of yr. marriage - what a little talk that was: hardly deserving the name - still it is very pleasant in remembrance -

Sue Gilbert I have not seen since my sister's wedding - she was then present, & appeared much as of old - I hardly know whether she loves Austin or not - I can hardly believe it; still she is said to be very sensitive to any remark, & continues to receive his attentions with a marked complacensy (sic) - I have ceased to predict in such matters - they seem beyond the province of prophecy - To wait & to "have been" fully expecting any development is, of necessity, the only resource of an outsider -

I supposed, my dear Helen, that one sheet wld. contain all I cld. possibly have time to say - though not all, no, nor the twentieth part of what I would say if I were seeing you - but somehow I have been writing on regardless of else than yr.self - till I am on my second sheet - But I can write no more now; I will soon again. When I see you I will tell you if it comes in natural-ly, of a strange dream about you some four or five months since - I'll tell you of one now - A few night since I thought we were visiting old Holyoke together - [___] getting into the carriage - I believe you were running to see if you cld not jump in - you struck your head against the wheel - & fainted!! I managed as well as I cld be expected to in getting you to the Hotel, placing you on a sofa, bathing yr. temples &ct &ct till -[longish line] the dream ended then & left you unrestored. I hope you have never similarly suffered, my dear friend, & that if ever in a (far)? off future, we shd visit those sacred places together we shall not witness the realization of these drear ideas - But my dear Helen I must (not write another word - Do write me very soon - & you shall receive a quick reply - If you are sick my dear friend, get well at once - - I shd prescribe a change of climate for a season!!! Good bye
As Ever
Sincerely yrs,

Wld. you like me to [th__] to a [scra___] dating a fortnight back? I guess you [____] & I shall therefore do [___] - Good bye again -Henry -

HR to HFH Bloomfield NJ March 1(?)-53

My dear Helen.
I do wish I cl'd- see you just for one minute, & look right straight into yr good face - Why my dear friend I wrote you six full pages & copied two I believe, more than a month ago, & have been wearily watching each seperate (sic) mail ever since - oh how they've "dragged" for the last fortnight Helen - What singular fatality is it that disposes so summarily of almost all my produc-tions? I shall be more a fatalist than ever, bye & bye - Why I told you, I believe a good deal about myself & surroundings in my last, & I do honestly hope that no one else has seen it - I was going to say it was a singular coincidence that yr. letter shd. have reached me at last on a day when I had been thinking so much of you; but it occurred to me that the coincidence wld. have been as remark-able had it reached me on any day for a long, dreary past - I went yesterday Helen & looked at yr. last letter again to see if indeed you had promised that in a fortnight I shd have a momento - in more senses than one - of past days - & so it was written - & then I counted over the days again, & this morning again as I was standing by my (---?) and wondering. I thought I wl'd write, at all hazards, even though you might be pubishing me for past offences - & so on, my dear friend, until one of the boys brought me yr. note this afternoon. Now you know all - now yr. letter has reached me, & now I am writing a reply, that will reach you Friday night - (I remember "timing" the other for Saturday night) So my dear good friend, send those wicked tempters away from you, even though my past delay - not negligence Helen - gave them credentials - Yes, my dear friend, send them all away, & believe me just as you used to on the church steps, & among the shadows of old Holyoke - Arent they sacred - thrice sacred - those old associations - the places they hallow - & all - God be thanked for them - yes - & God bless her too Helen, who lends(?) them all their sanctity - "Doubt" you Helen? - nothing on earth cl'd- tempt me to doubt you for one instant - Ah! what wld. I give to see you once again __ x x x x Whenever I write to you, my dear Helen, I always want to be entirely alone; It may be foolish - although I shd. stoutly deny it did any one charge me with foolishness therein - yet still it is eminently true of my letters to y'rself - they must be written away from other men - there is a sensible restraint in the presence of any mortal which annoys me, & seems to preclude the possibility of sp(irit?) converse - which may be sentimental moonshine - & then again than God, may be a fearfully glorious reality -

Be that as it may - & I love to think about it not as a theory, but but (sic) as a divine reality - I am subjected to such a restraint to=night by the intrusion of the French teacher, whose fire fails him, & who begs a seat by my - I hardly know what I shall call it - stove - a box - a box stove - At any rate, no matter what, you know what I mean & I'll on(?)-

My dear Helen, you have been sick - I am aware that all sympathies with physical (ill?) look wonderfully flat, on paper, & have rather a dull, unnecessary(?) sound, when read off - perhaps from the fact that they are taken for granted & so deemed unneces-sary, rather than disbelieved - Still, Helen, in this case, did you know what honest sorrow the announcement occasioned, you wld. pardon almost any indulgence in extraagant pathos - I am "real sorry" & tr. next will tell me soon (?) that you are quite well (___?)

Do you hear anything of "dear old Amherst" now? Not a word has reached me for a long while from that quarter - Still I may hear soon - Sue Gilbert will perhaps visit my sister in the month of April (my vacation) & then I shall hear again of the place & its gossipings - Do you know I had a wild dream of you, & myself & Prof Snell's family &ct, a while since - I couldn't possibly put it on paper, though if you were here I sh'd tell you it all - in (____) - When, my dear Helen, shall I see you again? - Annie told me, when I called on her, - a short time since - that you might come in March - I want very much, Helen, to see th face I saw in daguerreotype there; it was suggestive, I assure you - My sister's residence is 24 Remsen St Brooklyn ("A. F. Goodnow" - have you rec'd her cards? - Thank you for yr. kind wishes for her; she is as dear to me, as ever - You see I've been clipping off my sentences, & crowding them to=gether for some way back; the sheet is nearly finished - I I must close - Now, my dear friend, let it not be a long while before I hear of you - if it be more than two weeks, you'll (___ ___ ___) And yr. next will tell me too something of yrself proper, won't it Helen? That, I want most to hear of - Are you much changed? Oh! that I cl'd look in & see just what I am, that cld answer such a question - And still I don't know as I wl'd. if I c'ld- Helen, I fancy - yes I know - I am changed much - channging more - I don't think I cl'd tell you at present - if I tried - Life has a much more serious look than it had - much broader, more defined, & sometimes - yes often a worthless look - It's wrong - it's morbid but necessitated almost by surroundings - Ah! Helen when I begin to tell you, I see that I cannot - Sometimes - & there's a deep, serious truth in what I'm going to say - sometimes it seems to me as if I was passing through a great temptation scene, the necessary precursor to mature earnest-ness; & when the spell is off, I can talk about it; not now - This may seem foolishness; perhaps insanity - at any rate it is fact - understand it as you may. Oh! Helen, what are we? x x But enough -
[marginalia. can't make sense of first sentence on p.1 margin]: ....I think now as I close this letter, Helen, of all the past - I sincerely wish I cl'd give you a little idea of my thoughts - But I can't - & I'll close - Still I can't help thinking of the belief with wh- you wrote this note lying by my side & I wish again, I cl'd but for a moment look into yr face - Still I can't - "Good bye" Helen - don't disbelieve me, but trust me as of old - for - Helen - I shall never cease to be yr. sincere earnest friend
Henry -
P.S. Do write me very soon, my dear friend, just as of old - Do you hear from Mary Sprague? I was thinking of her to=day - I cl'd ____ ___ ___ ____ ___ yet - But enough - "Good bye" again & God Bless you, Helen - As ever y'rs Henry
#18 P5F5 HR to HH New York. Mch. 9/54
[dated in error, I think this is 9 March 1855]

Yr. last good letter, my dear Helen, reached me in good season, & was doubly welcome for that it waited my return from Boston, & greeted me, as I came to my present quiet life, so like an old familiar friend - I had been to Cambridge to "take up connections" & bring away my books, & was of course a little saddened by the acknowleged necessity of a surrender - it is always you know somewhat difficult to break any associations; & though those at Cambridge were never very dear to me, still I had begun to feel that they were intimately [____] to any success I might have in life, & so when I came to break them, it was not without a conscious regret - And so yr. letter was a very welcome one - But instead of all this you wld. much rather know just how I am at present - And in the first place dont trouble yr.self about the responsibility of having converted me to the faith in, & trial of Homeopathy. It was a matter of necessity with me - not wholy to be sure - but certainly in part - I fell in with a young Homeopathic physician in traveling two or three months since, who talked very rationally about the comparatively [____] things, & so far as he cld, prepared the way for what was prepared for me - Within a week from the time I met him, I was told by Dr. Parker that he cld. do nothing for me but operate surgically - I was confident this was merely dodging the question; it removed indeed the more immediately dangerous features &(?) effects of the disease, but left the disease itself unassailed to attack another & perhaps hidden part - I was unsatisfied, & a little bit provoked at this half-way meeting of the difficulty, & with the expressed belief that a delay of a week wld not imperil my life, consulted physicians of the other school, & bentured to try their remedies - At the end of the first week, as I told you in my last, Dr. Parker thought his prescription of "quiet"! had succeeded in diminishing the vigor of the disease & advised a continuance of the same treatment - not knowing of course that I had consulted any one but himself - I kept him in ignorance that I might avail myself of him in case of a surgical operation - The Homeopathic physicians advised strongly an entire rejection of anything like surgical treatment so long as my life is not in immediate danger; & so I have gone on from week to week closely following the prescriptions, & waiting the result. I ought not to expect positive advantage from anything just at present I suppose & must content myself with an appearance, if I can have it, that the symptoms are not aggravated. I meet my counsellor tomorrow, & he is to tell me whether or no I had better go on, or resort to surgery - Meanwhile my health is apparently very good. A little weakness is the only apparent change, but I am confident that the greatest care in diet, & all the so called minor prescriptions of the Hoip.(?) School. have induced a better state of health general, than I have known for some time - There - Helen - haven't I sufficiently "detached the woe" of [___] disease, & shown you that you cant claim the honor of converting me to Homeopathy? Dont give yrself the least uneasiness about yr. responsibility, but believe I am doing the best I can do & let yr. faith in the prevalence of the best be enough for any result. My dear Helen, it is the strongest proof of the purity, & per-manence, & truthfulness, & devotedness of our attachment, that I can write as I have for the last two or three pages, knowing that it isnt egotism at all but a conscious confidence that you, my dear, long-tried, precious friend want to know all, from tr. regard for me - Ah! the blessed thing to me in all the past of life external has been this bright, beautiful friendship of ours - the same [---- ----] through changes, sometimes wild, sometimes serene, but a thing of life, & truth, & [_______] always; always bearing the seal of God's always breathing Heaven - But you see I am far along, & must stop at once without room to tell you how I had expected to be, & shd. have been, in Washington before this if my physician had not forbidden it - nor how I am hoping to get a letter from you at once telling me that you are coming to N. York - nor how glad I am you have such noble truthfulness to love(?) in yr. new-found friend Minnie - nor how I have been to call on the Misses Gardiner, & liked them very much - nor how I met Dr. Sprague of Albany at a "smashing wedding" the other night & heard of Mary Sprague, & was told by her that you & she "corresponded everlast-ingly" - nor how I do know, & have talked with the redoubtable Rufus Saxton - nor how I did not love, & was not engaged to Sue Gilbert - nor how "I shd like to see the man that said so" - nor how I am not very "wild" - nor of a whole host of ther things, of wh- when we have plenty of time & no other material we will talk on - & on - & on God willing -(long dark line drawn)

[begins marginalia, which becomes cross-writing, some of it difficult to read]:
But now, & for the present, my good friend, good bye - God bless you & keep you always - whether it be in the blessing of tr. husband's love, & the full joy it brings, or in the deep dark sorrow of a mothers heart wh- will not be comforted because her children "are not" always keep you near Himself. Oh! how little Murray's heart must grieve because of the short-sightedness wh prevents us from seeing all the while the infinite love, wh- persists, & joys in the maturing fullness of his young, spiritual life - How would he doubtless if he could say to us "Why, ye short sighted ones of earth - why, my precious mother, will ye not see, that He, who never afflicted willingly, cld. not have been induced to bear in unmurmuring silence, the sight of yr. bitter tears, & yr protracted mourning, & worse than all, the bitter conscious-ness that all His kindness was misunderstood, if he had not infinitely loved me, & the blessing my death on earth has purchased - Did ye but know by faith what I know by vision, ye would be sure that God is always Love, & hasten to fulfil all spiritual possibi-lities by a serene oneness with Himself - if not without at least thought & after [_____] - Ah! how much clearer, broader, deeper is the vision of the little angel than any you & I shall ever reach on earth - But enough - I thought I had finished some time ago. Anbd again good bye - & God be with you -
As of old -


Care of Lawson Goodnow & Co
7. Gold St-

Brooklyn -
Wed. morning.

Yr. good little note reached me yesterday, my dear Helen, & though I had already written you a note at West Chester, still I hoped so strongly for one from you, that I was induced to believe you wld. get it sooner if I waited to learn yr. address, than if I were to send it somewhere, & run the risk - It seems I was correct & now I must just add a little & send it on -

I wanted to write to you, Helen, the night of the day you called at Mrs Well's; but I cld'nt do it - There were some business letters wh- had to be written, & before they were finished a caller came, & kept me up, long after I ought to have been in bed - I was very tired, & knew that I must get rested -=

But you didn't think I didn't want to write? - No - I don't believe you thought so - for after I made that point interogatory, I read over yr. note, & have succeeded in disipating a slim suspicion to that effect -

But I see I shall un on & on if I don't look out - one word though about myself - you see I am content to be quite egotistical at present - It isn't quite so clear, as I was at first induced to believe, that there is nothing seriously at war with permanent health - Dr. Parker thought the swelling of wh- I spoke to be an enlarged gland; perhaps brot about by a strain or some such thing, & treated it accordingly - He has not yet proved his position by his experiments - & consequently there is more reason to fear than I thought for - Dr. Wyman may be right after all; though shd. Dr. Parker's belief be correct, I shall hope for a speedy recovery & return to Cambridge - I have told you this all, Helen, because - thank God - I knew you wanted to know it; if there were room, I shd. tell you how glad this consciousness makes me - God be in ye -
Henry -

HR to HFH [pencil]

[April or May 1855]

If I were to write you a little note this evening, my dear Helen, it might get to you tomorrow afternoon, & break into the midst of a Sunday rest, & if I were not to write you to night, I see no reason why a thousand little annoyances, & weariness may not present me, during the early part of the next week, as certainly they have during the whole of the closing, from answering yr. good letter rec'd. now little more than a seven days since - I shall run the risk of a Sunday intrusion, & yield to my own inclinations; not that I am not at all sure that I shant [____], instead of sending what I write, (for I am tired, & weak, & [____] to put together two sentences, with any assurance that they'll "fit"), buyt simply because just now as I was sitting at the piano, & amusing myself by striking chords, the consciousness of a Saturday night repose - that consciousness wh- is so still, & full, & un-faltering, in its quiet power - came softly around me (for I think it takes one into itself, rather than that it is itself inspired) & somehow or other I thought of you, & so I "got me" a pencil, & before I knew it am lounging in a large easy chair by the back parlor window, & fairly on my way to Washington -

It wld. be very commonplace for me to say that I was very sorry to learn of yr. Aunt Vinal's death - but at the same time it wld mean a good deal - for the quiet dignity of her presence impresses me even yet, & I had hoped, really, that I might go & see her again - do you remember the night? - & sit by her side, & talk with her, & learn from her - so I dont think it wld. be disbelieved if even I were to say I was sorry she is gone - But after all it wldn't be true - for I'm not sorry at all; for I haven't any doubt that her youth is received even as the morning, & that she is excellant (sic) & untrembling in the midst of the Eternities - Does she care much for Earth, think you, now? Not that I do not think she ought to have cared for earth while she was here; but that she will look upon it simply as a past, with the same half-pleasing, half-melancholy emotions, with wh- a full grown man, with a finely developed character wld regard, in complete review, the varying causes, & occasions wh- have conspired to round his maturing nature into full symmetry - It seems to me that one of the first facts on wh- our newly acquired powers of perception will fasten themselves in the hearafter will be the magnificent error, into wh- men unconsciously fall, of regarding this & the other life, as two seperate, & distinct existences - of speaking of them ever as pf "this" & "the other", the "here" - & the "hereafter", - not considering them as part & parcel of an utterly intact existence, wh streams on from birth, through what we call life & death; forever -[long dash] The fact is, I beleive, we invest what we call death with too much activity, & fancy that it effects changes, when it simply opens doors - & so I believe it to be the everlasting privilege of human souls to begin in an earthly childhood a life wh shall solve its own mysteries by its own perfection, & under-stand & appreciate itself, & its God only at the same point of absolute time -

But I didn't think at all of this Helen, & its enough -

It is now more than four weeks since I last wrote you, & you will want to know of my health - I had just placed myself under Dr. Reesing, who began at once & very rigorously - The sum of it all is just this - his treatment has weakened me very much - I walk some every day; generally twice; but it tires me exceedingly, & I havent mental energy enough for an intelligent comprehension of "Mother Goose" - He is quite hopeful himself, but whether he is effecting anything except present prostration it is utterly impossible for me to divine - of course I attempt almost nothing - & my mother, & sister do all that they can to make me comfortable; & you have been sick enough to know that "comfortable" means somettimes a good deal - I read a little, talk a little, & think a good deal - Sometimes I go to see whatever friends I have here, & "wait" to see what time & the treatment will work - During the summer I shall remain either in, or near - the city - Possibly at Flushing; possibly at West Chester - I shd. love dearly to spend a quiet summer at Newport; but it will be necessary for me to see my physician certainly once, & probably twice each week, & must therefore be located somewhere near him - X X X I was suddenly, but premptorily interrupted jsut here by being told, & thereafter convinced that I had one enough for one day; & although I can not, break yr. Sunday quiet as I had anticipated (for it is already Sunday evening) & although, too, a hasty glance at the last page or two of what I have written has convinced me that I have to completely realized my worst fears, that the shabyy sentences shd. rather kindle a fire, than be sent to a friend, I am nevertheless going to finish by a few words, & let it go -

You know we don't write for display, & I am far to (sic) weak to care much for it now - How I do wish my dear good friend that I cld pass a week or two with you - Are'nt you coming to N. York? It is spring time now, & you surely shd. be receiving yr. orders. If you had been here during the past few weeks, I shd. have talked very much with you, I know, & it wld. have been so pleasant. It seems to me much to be regretted that we can not pass the summer somewhere together - I look forward to it with a peculiar pleasure - I long for green fields, & the warm sunlight, & the starry evenings, & the fresh dew, & the soft shower, & the birds, & fruits, & flowers, & the infinite little beauties of a N. England Summer. Perhaps my anticipations are quite singular now, since the possibility of its being my last summer comes so clearly before me - certainly they are frequent, & pleasant. If my health, & circumstances "con___ed" I shd. spend a few weeks in old Amherst; but it will probably be impossible - I wld. love to see one of those splendid Amherst sunsets, & dream away a week or two, just as I used to "when I was a boy"!! But I do seem to have grown wondrously old of late - so, you say, have you? - Well now my dear Helen do care much for yrself, & dont let those southern hearts make you wilt, but hurry north - Now mind, & dont forget this - I begin to believe there is such a thing as disease; & I cld talk a little of its crippling powers if I wanted to, but I wont now -

You want to know of Rufus Saxton - All I can tell you is this that I met him in the cars, & talked for an hour or so immediately after introduction, & saw him two or three times thereafter but as to whether he is sane or no I am wholly unable to decide. If after patiently investigating the matter you shd discover him to be so, please present him my congratulations upon the happy solution of the complimentary doubt -

I'm sorry I omitted replying to a portion of yr. previous letter; it was entirely from inadvertence; yr. views accorded so completely with my own, that it didnt occur to me to question them - I believe that "to the poem(?) all things are prose", is a maxim wh- holds good forever - Not that I do not object most decidedly to the officiousness of some English ladies, who in their eagerness to convince people they are not prudes indulge in the most uncalled for allusions & prove a spiritual impurity by a resolute brazen-facedness; for certainly I do; but at the same time it wld. be vastly more complimentary to themselves, & better for society, if American ladies betrayed more ease in, & proved the true delicacy of allusions wh- "the world" now call "indelicate" - But enough of every thing; & I must hurry to close; why saying that I did not stop to think of what you were going to do, or any such thing in its seriousness; it only seemed unpleasant to me to do just as you suggested, & hardly stopping to think at all, I wrote what I did. As I said, I shd have done just as you suggested in yr. next, & after I had sent my letter reproached myself for not yeilding to an impulse wh. wld have me do at any rate what you wanted without consulting false appearances - I shd. have sent my daguerreotype before this but for one thing - Do you prefer one taken just after I graduated or one taken now? I thought possibly the latter & was much as an [as____] barber had manifested an undue partiality for my hair I thought best to wait, & not send myself "clipped" - The one originally taken for you is a fine picture - "as a work of art" - but the face is "fat" & the cheeks are red - Tell me wh- you'll have, & I'll follow yr. will - I want yr. picture very much indeed & "wait" for it not altogether patiently -

But now my dear Helen, I must bid you "good bye" - Don't let it be long before you write; don't let it be but a very little while, for I needn't tell you that yr. letters are peculiarly precious to me now - & do come north - "Good bye" & God bless & keep you always near Himself - I shd. like to talk a bit about the possibility [___] this direction - but not now -

As ever -

Henry --

Top of Page     

Click here for CC Home Page

Helen Hunt Jackson

Special Collections Home

maintained by Special Collections; last revised, 12-02, jr