Commentary

Disciples


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Monday, July 13, 1891

     5:50 P.M. W. reading—looked rather dragged out. The day had been very hot. "It is the most oppressive of all—the most. I have spent the day in the chair—on the bed—without the least comfort anyway you put it." Asked me, "Well, did Bush get off? Yes?

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He was here yesterday—we had quite a long talk together. He seemed to enjoy it."
Clifford in Camden but had not stopped at 328. His quest of W. the Sunday previous with a young lady unfortunate—W. not seeing them. O'Donovan and Eakins had not stopped yesterday. The first here again today "with his wax," W. said laughingly. July issue of Magazine of Art before W. (it had come from Bolton). He was "much charmed" by its illustration. Turned to an open copy of Century—picked it from the floor, "Look at that! Do you think better ever was? That is the General, out and out—to the bone—if not to the heart." Pointing to the reproduction of St.-Gaudens' Sherman (the General). "I think the reproduction, too, about perfect—it is so strong, so full of atmosphere"—photo-engraved. Incidentally, too, "No, I don't put Sherman in the first rank. I would speak of him in military lines as I would of Longfellow in literature. Longfellow was high up, but topped—others way beyond. He was no bit of an Emerson, for instance. No, Sherman came less than first-classers. There was Grant, I think him the best—he typifies so many things—towers, tops, stands ever alone!"

     W. asked, "When you leave will you go direct home? Well," glancing about him, his eye falling on a lemon nearby, "take this to Anne, the dear girl—tell her I remember her." Then, toying with the lemon, "What a color it has! The sun's—strong, fine: it attracts me. How do simple trifles—the merest accident, often—arrest, appeal, command!"

     Again, "How often have I seen Sherman! Yet, so far as I know, never spoke to him. Yet there was a time when I was in the Washington swim—knew every cranny and corner of affairs, and persons, and events as they transpired. Some unfulfilled, unknown, secret events, too! All the passion, victory, defeat of long, long, long years!"

     Told W. of our walk, he being in every way interested. "Why! it comes close to my old walks, long, long ago—brings the whole thing back to me. Oh! the exhilaration of such freedom—the going and coming—the being master of yourself and of the road! No one who is not a walker can begin to know it!"


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     We talked about lecture. Could he undertake the Lincoln in the fall? He smiled, "The hundred dollars or so would be tempting, but you know, as I know, now, that I am not any longer in shape to take risks—have but to sit here—wait, wait—husband, husband, husband."

     Wished tomb photos cut circular and put on a square card. Had curiously expressed his notion by cutting his circle on the yellow paper—mounting on photo—with descriptive lines:
To head plate printer

Can't you make me a photo: cut plain round like a full moon or silver dollar and mounted on ab't this size card—of wh' this is a (crude) suggestion and sample?

Put lines at bottom of photo and show taste in space—not too near, & not too low.

After printing six (6) with the line "U S America" take out the line and print the rest (14) without it

(the photographer, Dr Reeder, says the plate will show better by being printed middling light—I leave that to y'r taste and judgment.)

WW


[Under the round frame and photo W. wrote:] You see this sample is all askew yr own judgment will carry you right

Asked, "Did you see yesterday's Record? They tell me something appeared there about us—a fling, too, if I am rightly informed. Perhaps you will look it up?" (I found a postal from Law at home to the same effect later.)


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