The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: King, Ralph
Record 9 of 41

System Number: 06500
Date: 11 November [1858][1]
Author: Anna Matilda Whistler[2]
Place: Philadelphia
Recipient: James H. Gamble[3]
Recipient: [Staten Island]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: Whistler W495
Document Type: ALS[4]

1205 Arch St

Nov 11th

My dear friend

You never defer a kindness, for as the follower of our Divine Master you delight in doing good. Thanks for your note & the excellent butter which came so promptly. I wished to have offered more directly than thro Mr King[5], but my dear Sister[6] was just on the start & I had to answer a business letter to him so merely requested him to hand you the amount of $14.14 you had advanced for the butter. this I knew would satisfy you that it had come safely. We opened the fruit yesterday, its quality is first rate. I have not offered to share it with Mrs Hill[7] as she no doubt has her regular supply & I doubt not its keeping well. [p. 2] The Mary[8] I have was a farmers [sic] daughter in the north of Ireland & is very careful. You will be glad to have helped me to economize. I have for a fortnight been paying 40cts a lb for butter in market, some dairies get 50cts. Willie[9] gets up at once when I ask him shall I or will he go to market. Indeed dear Mr Gamble your prayers are being answered. I am sure your dear Mother[10] does not forget me & my boys when I always think of your home circle. Willie is my chaplain, how we miss his Aunt Kate! We three went to Communion at St Marks last Sunday morning, we sat in the pew of Mrs Reed[11] the widow of Proff [sic] Wm R. who was among the victims in the steamer Arctic[12]. My sister & herself became friends, during her Summer sojourn in Stonington, when her brother[13] [p. 3] was pastor there. A letter from the Cottage gladdens [sic] me that Mr Olssens[14] school is being increased. Dear Mrs Maxwell[15] will be glad that Stephen Holbrook[16] is to be placed there & the widow ladys son who was to have enquired of Mrs Aspinwall[17] her opinion of the school last Novr. Will you at your next call 88 East 18th offer my love. I know how it must cheer our revered Mrs Maxwell to see you & hear you! oh how I should enjoy a visit there! & from you together here! I am feeling stronger these few days but find I must be very moderate in exercise, therefore I have not made a search for the St P Journal[18], it shall go to you dear friends for I know you'll not criticize what has not never been revised & corrected. Dont be sorry at putting me to trouble &c[.] I shall not hurry. The truth is I have put off unpacking several trunks & by degrees I ought to restore order. My eyes are decidedly better. Dr James Darrach[19] has my utmost confidence & being under the [p. 4] same roof. I am daily under his care. It is a great advantage to Willie too. I can read my friends letters now. tho I do not waste eye sight in reading mine to them. Love to you all.

Unalterably & faithfully your friend

A M Whistler.

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  1858
Dated from AMW's address, and with reference to the Perpetual Calendar Whitaker's Almanac. AMW lived at 1205 Arch Street, Philadelphia from ca June 1858 to about the spring of 1860.

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

3.  James H. Gamble
James H. Gamble (b. 1820), clerk [more].

4.  ALS
Embossed stamp: PARIS

5.  Mr King
Ralph King (1801-1878), broker, father-in-law of W. McN. Whistler [more].

6.  Sister
Catherine ('Kate') Jane Palmer (ca 1812 - d.1877), née McNeill, AMW's sister [more].

7.  Mrs Hill
Probably Susan Hill (1806-1872), née Clarkson, wife of Robert Carmer Hill, or her sister Jane Hill (1802-1872), née Clarkson, wife of William Stewart Hill of Scarsdale.

8.  Mary
Mary Brennan (b. 1825), AMW's servant [more].

9.  Willie
William McNeill Whistler (1836-1900), physician, JW's brother [more].

10.  Mother
Jane Gamble (1790-1864), mother of J. H. Gamble [more].

11.  Mrs Reed
Elizabeth White Reed, née Bronson, was the wife of Henry Hope Reed (1808-1854), lawyer, and Professor of Rhetoric and English Literature at the University of Pennsylvania. AMW made a mistake by referring to her as the wife of her brother-in-law William Bradford Reed (1806-1876), lawyer, diplomat and author [more], who edited the lectures of his brother (Henry Hope); see AMW to Deborah Delano Haden, 10 December 1855, #06470.

12.  Arctic
Steamer Arctic (1850), Collins Line (2,856 tons.); see AMW to JW, 3 March 1852, #06412.

13.  brother
Rev. Bronson, brother of E. W. Reed.

14.  Mr Olssens
Rev. William Whittinghame Olssen (1827-1911), Rector at Scarsdale, NY [more].

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

16.  Stephen Holbrook
Stephen Holbrook, unidentified.

17.  Mrs Aspinwall
Margaret Aspinwall (d. 1881), née Maxwell, wife of J. S. Aspinwall [more]; see AMW to James H. Gamble, 4 November 1857, #06490.

18.  St P Journal
The journal written by AMW in St Petersburg between 1842 and 1848 (#06348, #06349, #06350, #06351, #12743).

19.  Dr James Darrach
James Darrach (1828-1869), physician in Philadelphia [more]. He was mentor to William McNeill Whistler; see AMW to JW, 13 - 15 July 1857, #06485.