System Number: 06536
Date: 16 September/29 October 1867
Author: Anna Matilda Whistler
Place: Baltimore and New York
Recipient: James H. Gamble
Place: [New York]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W530
Document Type: ALS
Homeland, W Baltimore
Sept 16th 1867
My dear Mr Gamble
Your welcome letter from Virg[inia] City reached me on my return to Stonington, which I left last thursday accompanied by my neice [sic] Julia Palmer direct to Balt[imore] where Mrs Ducatel & the two daughters yet spared to bless her, & her Grandson & mine Georgie Whistler welcomed us on friday evening. on Saturday morning the young ladies took Julia thru the best parts of their town & into Peabodys institute.
After dinner Mr Perines carriage came for us & you know how fond I am of them, their pretty stone church which we attended yesterday has now its stone rectory in the same beautiful enclosure. I feel the vacancy death has made in my friends family circle, but the last remaining of my God-sons, Glen Perine brightens it by bringing his pleasant young wife & their sweet infant daughter Mary - [(]named for her two Grandmothers) to be a well-spring of joy to the four Aunts & the widowed Grandfather. And now expecting to leave them before sunset I shall end this report, to go to the parlor circle, when to revisit this Homeland again is in the future only known by our loving Master. I lament time does not admit of my gratifying my yearning & that of my Richmond circle to go to see them.
189 Henry St Brooklyn
This is the close of my visit in my beautiful native land & I am seated between Mr King & his wife, facing a dear Cousin from Charleston. but I must scribble adieu to you dear Mr Gamble. tomorrow by seven A M my nephew Donald McNeill - a fine young man & great blessing to me, [p. 2] is to come from 550 5th St N Y & take me to my ship the Persia. the choice of Staterooms mine & I'm to have it alone. I have recovered from an illness, which followed immediately upon my fatigue of repacking trunks to send to London. I bruised a finger & it is yet awkward to use my right hand, or this letter had been a long & interesting report of those you & I have met together. My dear Sister accompanied me from her home where dear Dr Palmers skill & care by Gods blessing had so restored my health. we went to Scarsdale cottage for three days Sunday included. bright lovely weather for drives & for my calls upon all our friends. dear Miss Margaret had been in the summer for weeks visiting her rich Cousins on the Hudson & was in better spirits for the change of scene. Mrs Popham I think looks feeble but oh how kind was she & her good spouse to us. I was glad to hear Mr Olssen again & to find the parish so prospering & Mrs Olssen looking so much better than when I had gone to the Parsonage in Augt. You are associated with their favorite Bishop - Tuttle & all rejoice are together.
My sister & I went to see our neice [sic] (the Rodewalds) for two days last week & your dear Sister drove over to see us, we wished time had not been so limited or we should have enjoyed going to Homeland. I venture to encourage the hope I may be permitted to come again after a years interval, when I shall not have the business affairs to interfere with the claims of my dear friends & relatives. I wrote the first letter I have attempted since my lame finger - last friday to offer sympathy with our dear Mrs Aspinwall, as her revered Mother's funeral was on Wednesday at Nyack. today I have her note of adieu & love [p. 3] among the grateful memories & that all her wishes for her mother had been granted, was mentioned that even the old nurse who had for years attended her family & had been with dear Mrs Gamble till the last, was with Mrs Maxwell. how much I should have enjoyed going to Nyack! but I have been able to visit few, or should have made it a point to go to 14th St to see Mrs Cruger. but distances are so great & my relatives are far between, & my strength was prostrated by so severe a bilious attack & fever. What a fine Oct we have had, all Oct was sunshine, today a south east storm with rain. I trust it is now clearing off as I wish tomorrow to be on deck, to see the beautiful harbor. My sister (& her Julia who went with me to Balt & Phil[adelphia][)] left me this afternoon for their home at Stonington. her son George Palmer & Donnie McNeill their escort. the latter is an engineer in the service of the Pacific Steam Co in N Y at $100 a month. he agreed at the N Year to go to Florida to help his father on his place in Florida, & he spent last winter & was a benefit & comfort to his parents. But now I must bid you adieu my beloved friend.
I trust in our gracious Lord to be prospered on my return voyage to England & to report to you of my boys ere the New Year. Jackson McNeill is at Glascow Howard Co Missouri. I hear from him & of his dear wife & old nurse who lives with them, I'm sure he would welcome a letter & would answer it if you would incline to exchange a friendly greeting. Offer a share of my regards with [it] [p. 4] Mr King desires to be remembered to you. he is always good & kind as a brother to me, may he be spared long to bless his sweet wife & many of us! but he is rather failing in health I fear! tho she is the best of nurses. And now adieu & heaven bless you my dear friend.
believe me as ever your affectionate old friend.
Anna M Whistler.
Remember me daily & my boys, in your prayers as I do you.
3. Homeland, W Baltimore
Homeland, in the north west of Baltimore was the name of the residence of David M. Perine (see below).
AMW's sister Kate Palmer lived in Stonington, CT.
6. Mrs Ducatel & the two daughters
Mrs J. T. Ducatel, mother-in-law of George William Whistler, and her daughters.
8. Peabodys institute
Founded in 1857 by George Peabody (1795-1869), banker and philanthropist [more], Baltimore's Peabody Institute was the first major cultural center in an American city. It provided the city with a scholars' library, a public lecture series, a Gallery of Art and Sculpture and an Academy of Music.
12. four Aunts
Ann Carson Perine (1819-1919), daughter of M. and D. M. Perine [more]; Susan Buchanan Perine (1820-1899), daughter of M. and D. M. Perine [more]; Mary Glenn Perine (1822-1896), daughter of M. and D. M. Perine [more]; Rebecca Young Perine (1825-1879), daughter of M. and D. M. Perine [more]; they were the daughters of David Maulden and Anna Glenn Perine.
For the most part of 1863, AMW lived in Richmond, VA, where her son William McNeill Whistler was stationed during his service in the Confederate army; she lodged at Mrs Genet's house (see #06512, and AMW to D. D. Haden, 4 August 1863, #06521).
15. Mr King & his wife
Ralph King (1801-1878), broker, father-in-law of W. McN. Whistler [more], and Mildred M. ('Mittie') King (b. 1820), née Bronaugh, second wife of R. King [more]; their address was 189 Henry Street, New York.
18. the Persia
Steamer Persia (1855), Cunard Line (2,697 tons).
21. Scarsdale cottage
The cottage at Scarsdale, NY, where AMW had lived intermittently between about September 1851 and November 1857. It belonged to her friends M. G. and S. S. Hill.
James H. Gamble lived with the Wanns at Staten Island, NY. Homeland was the name of his residence.
Ann Maxwell (1784-1867), née Young, wife of Robert Maxwell [more]. The announcement of her death was published as follows: 'On Sunday, Oct. 20, Mrs Ann Maxwell, widow of the late Dr. Robert Maxwell, Dumfrieshire, Scotland, in the 83d year of her age. Her funeral will be from the house of her son-in-law, Jas. S. Aspinwall, at Nyack, on Wednesday, 23d inst., at 12½ o'clock. The friends of the family are invited to attend without further invitation. The Hudson River Railroad 10 o'clock train will connect at Tarrytown with the ferry-boat for Nyack in time for the services.' See 'Died,' The New York Times, 22 October 1867, vol. 17, no. 5015, p. 5.
33. Pacific Steam Co
Pacific Mail Steamship Company (formed in 1848), 61 Wall and Hanover Street, New York; see AMW to James H. Gamble, 3/27 August 1867, #06532; New York City Directory, 1864-5, New York, p. 782.
34. his father
Charles Johnson McNeill (1802-1869), brother of AMW [more]. He inherited land, Beauclerc Bluff, from his uncle Zephaniah Kingsley and lived at Reddie Point, on the St John's River, Florida, where AMW had visited him in March 1858; see #06495, #06526, and #06532.
36. dear wife
Sarah Lewis, wife of P. T. J. McNeill.