The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Palmer, Emma Woodbridge
Record 11 of 15

System Number: 06520
Date: 15 November 1862
Author: Anna Matilda Whistler[1]
Place: Stonington
Recipient: James H. Gamble[2]
Place: [Staten Island]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: Whistler W514
Document Type: ALS[3]


Nov 15th

My Dear Mr Gamble

I returned here last Thursday morning and sent you by that evenings boat a package for your dear sister. the man who took it promised to deliver it safely to George Palmer[4] at 118 Duane street. and his mother[5] wrote him at my request to take it himself to your office so I do hope the picture reaches homeland in good order. Mr Wann[6] would suspect my sending it as I told him I should do. bright Autumnal leaves have this season been so difficult to collect that I felt happy in securing a share and hope your sister[7] will like the Cross[8] and feel free to send it to Ireland if she prefers that to placing it in her own room. My love to her and to your dear Mother[9]. My prospect is to return to Brooklyn next week though it is very dark as to the possibility of a [p. 2] passport[10] being obtained for my going South though Ida's[11] feeble State of health makes me feel it a sacred duty to go. God only can smooth the way and give me strength to perform and in him is my sure trust. I am not feeling so well, and my eyes tell the tale. I wish I could tell you of my happy little sojourn at Scarsdale Cottage[12]. all there remember you with unabated interest. Our friends Mr & Mrs P[13] are remarkably well. also my two sister friends[14], who grace the Cottage. but I must not trespass longer on your time or that of the pen in motion. my sister unites with me in the most affectionate greetings to your home land Circle. She has not decided yet whether she will be my escort by next Wednesday nights boat And I hesitate to ask such an exertion on her part for she could not stay beyond a day or two. I promised to breakfast at 44 Grand street Jersey City[15] on my way back as I dined there last Wednesday and Miss Emma[16] escorted me across the ferry to the Commonwealth. [p. 3] Mrs Jenkins[17] had much to tell me of all at Northampton and how glad she and her girls are to be in her own home.

if you have ever a time to make them a call, they will be glad to see you & dear Mrs Wann as Mrs J. asked with friendly interest of you all. believe me always

your attached friend.

A M Whistler.

Knowing the interest you feel I send you a letter from Jimmy[18] just received. You can enclose it to me and direct it to 59 Beaver street. tell Mr King[19] to hand it to me at Brooklyn and not to send it here.

This document is protected by copyright.


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

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

3.  ALS

4.  George Palmer
George Erwin Palmer (1843-1909), JW's cousin [more].

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

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

7.  your sister
Jane Wann (1822-1875), née Gamble, wife of S. Wann [more].

8.  the Cross
The Cross, as a religious symbol or ecclestiastical emblem, was usually hung in Roman Catholic private houses rather than Episcopal ones. It is possible that James H. Gamble was Roman Catholic.

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

10.  passport
At the very outbreak of the war, on 19 April 1861, Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865), 16th U. S. President [more], declared the Southern coasts in a state of blockade. The passport requirement must have followed shortly afterwards. See W. Birkbeck Wood and Major J. E. Edmonds, A History of the Civil War in the United States, London, 1905, p. 27.

11.  Ida's
Ida Bayard Whistler, née King (d. 1863), JW's sister-in-law [more].

12.  Scarsdale Cottage
AMW lived intermittently at Scarsdale, NY between ca September 1851 and November 1857, in a cottage owned by her friends Margaret G. Hill, and Sarah S. Hill.

13.  Mr & Mrs P
William Sherbrooke Popham (1793-1885), merchant [more], and his wife Jane O'Neill Hill (1793-1882), sister of M. G. Hill.

14.  two sister friends
Margaret Getfield Hill (1802-1881), a friend of AMW, of Scarsdale, NY [more], and her sister Sarah Stewart Hill (1800-1864).

15.  44 Grand street Jersey City
This was the address of Emeline Jenkins (see below). Also see Gopsill's Jersey City Directory, 1861-62, Jersey City, NJ, p. 172.

16.  Miss Emma
Probably Emma Woodbridge Palmer (1835-1912), JW's step-cousin [more].

17.  Mrs Jenkins
Emeline Jenkins, widow of William B. Jenkins.

18.  Jimmy
James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903), artist [more].

19.  Mr King
Ralph King (1801-1878), broker, father-in-law of W. McN. Whistler [more]; his business address was 59 Beaver Street, NY; see the Brooklyn City Directory, New York, 1861, p. 237.