The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Aspinwall, James Scott
Record 3 of 3

System Number: 06486
Date: 15 and 16 July 1857
Author: Anna Matilda Whistler[1]
Place: New York
Recipient: Jane Wann[2]
Place: [Staten Island, New York]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W481
Document Type: ALS

Richfield Springs[3]. Otsego Co. N York

July 15th 1857

My dear Mrs Wann

I heard from Mr Bleecher[4] at Scarsdale of your dear brother having called at the Popham office[5] to enquire after us at the Cottage[6], & so my friend & daily companion now, his favorite & venerated Mrs Maxwell[7] has shewn me his card, as having been discovered under the front door of the hospitable abode in 18th St[8] with greetings to her. Oh how we wish for him here & that your dear mother would accompany her son, if quiet is a restorative to her as I always find "rural quiet" we have it here in perfection. tho these Springs are resorted to by numbers, the private families in which the visitors are distributed must promote domestic retirement. Mrs Maxwell & myself find at Mrs Bailleys[9] all we want, a cool retreat from the heat, neat apartments excellent table, we discourage superfluities, but have the best of homemade bread, home churned butter & home laid eggs. Goblets of fresh milk at every meal, Do you [p. 2] not think dear Mrs Wann your husband[10] could spare your brother to us this month? to read to us some of his favorite vols, to walk with us! Mrs Bailley has plenty of room & the walks are so surrounded by the rural beauties of nature. Mrs Maxwell just looked in to ask me if it is not time to take our evening stroll & get our drink at the Spring, I told her to whom I was writing Mr Gambles sister, she exclaimed "dear fellow! I wish he'd come here, away from the heat of N York[,] I am sure he would enjoy being with us & we would do all in our power to make it pleasant to him."

Thursday 16th

It is a week this afternoon since I put myself under Mr Aspinwalls[11] protection to join Mrs Maxwell in his Nyack home for a night. I regretted as they did my stay could be no longer, but we felt the need of improving the brief bathing season. we came by the day boat last friday & continued our route by the Central R R[12] train 6 oclock that we (after the refreshment of tea at the Delavan[13] in Albany) we slept at the hotel in Herkimer, [p. 3] the attentive landlord Mr Spooner[14] there relieving us of care of luggage the moment the train stopped. But perhaps your brother might choose the night boat on the beautiful Hudson, he would then rest & get to Herkimer by the half past six train A M, in as good time as we did for staging hither. the elevation being 1400 feet above the Mohawk river yields breezes to refresh thro the 13 miles up hill, which is at a slow rate, in mercy to the horses! these invigorating breezes circulate around us at Richfield tho the hills encompass us on every side. As dear Mrs Maxwell (who already says she has derived benefit from the Sulph Springs, & I strolled after her bath at eleven oclock this morning admiring the verdure & varied richness of the scenery, Oh how earnestly & sincerely we wished for our dear Mr Gamble! do beg him to come away from the bustle & heat to gratify us. I might arrange for my Willie to join his beloved Mr Gamble at Richfield, how pleasant & profitable for my dear boy. The Lord grant it may be realized.

[p. 4] With sincere & affectionate remembrance of your circle in your home which some day I hope to visit,

I am unalterably your friend

Anna M Whistler

All well at Scarsdale.
We are at Mrs Bailleys, her husband the proprietor of the Stages[15] from Herkimer.

I[16] recd your second letter only.

[embossed stamp:] PARIS PAPER

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1.  Anna Matilda Whistler
Anna Matilda Whistler (1804-1881), née McNeill, JW's mother [more].

2.  Jane Wann
Jane Wann (1822-1875), née Gamble, wife of S. Wann [more]; she resided on Staten Island; see AMW to JW, 15 December 1856, #06477.

3.   Richfield Springs
Richfield Springs, NY; see AMW to JW, 13 and 15 July 1857, #06485.

4.  Mr Bleecher
Probably Augustus Bleecker (b. 1812), merchant [more]; he was the husband of Alethea Hill Popham (1824-1919). Bleecker worked with W. S. Popham for some time. It is possible that AMW misspelled Bleecker's surname.

5.  Popham office
The office of William Sherbrooke Popham (1793-1885), merchant [more] in 702 Broadway, New York; see Helen Lorraine Hultz, Scarsdale Story, A Heritage History, New Jersey, 1987, p. 829.

6.  Cottage
The cottage in which AMW lived intermittently at Scarsdale, NY between c. September 1851 and November 1857; it was owned by her friends Margaret G. and Sarah S. Hill.

7.  Mrs Maxwell
Ann Maxwell (1784-1867), née Young, wife of Robert Maxwell [more].

8.  18th St
88 East 18th Street was the home address of James Scott Aspinwall (1807-1874), merchant; see Doggett's New York City Directory, 1849-50, New York, p. 31.

9.  Mrs Bailleys
Mrs Bailley, landlady of a boarding house at Richfield Sulphur Springs, NY.

10.  your husband
Samuel Wann (b. 1820), merchant, brother-in-law of J. H. Gamble [more].

11.  Mr Aspinwalls
James Scott Aspinwall (1807-1874), merchant [more].

12.  Central R R
New York Central Railroad; see AMW to JW, 11 July 1856, #06474.

13.  Delavan
Delavan House Hotel, William A. Delavan, 8 Union Square, New York; see AMW to JW, 13 and 15 July 1857, #06485.

14.  Mr Spooner
Spooner, landlord of a hotel at Herkimer, NY.

15.  her husband the proprietor of the Stages
Bailley, landlord of a boarding house at Richfield Sulphur Springs, NY; he presumably owned the Stages at Herkimer, NY.

16.  I
'I ... only' continues in the left upper margin of p. 1.