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MEMORIES OF HAWTHORNE
Rose Hawthorne Lathrop
It will be seen that this volume is really written by Sophia Hawthorne; whose letters from earliest girlhood are so expressed, and so profound in thought and loveliness, that some will of sterner quality than a daughter's must cast them aside. I have tried to weed out those written records of hers (even from 1820) reaching to her last year in 1871, that could give no especial pleasure to any descendant who might come upon them; and I have been astonished to find that there was scarcely one such page. This is the explanation of my return, in the company of the friends of my father and mother, to an old garden, a familiar discourse, and a circle of life that embraced so much beauty.
ROSE HAWTHORNE LATHROP.
NEW YORK, February 20th, 1897.
[online ed: page numbers omitted]
THE HAWTHORNES AND THE PEABODYS
The Hawthornes summoned from their quietude by the Peabodys. Sophia Peabody's mother and grandmother, the latter wife of General Palmer, who was prominent in the Revolution. Characteristics of the Misses Peabody. Letters to the Hawthornes from the Peabodys, though so close at hand, because of the difficulty of seeing the former at any time. The dignity of George Peabody's nature. Sophia's fondness for profound books. The great affection of friends for her, who bring rare flowers to the little studio where she is often imprisoned. Elizabeth Hawthorne consents to walk with the Peabodys. Dr. Channing's regard for Sophia's artistic talent and motive. Miss Burley's literary club, to which Hawthorne liked to go with Sophia. The wooing not a moment delayed. Visits from Emerson and Very. Elizabeth goes forth among the most interesting people of Boston, and remains to teach their daughters.
THE DAYS OF THE ENGAGEMENT
Hawthorne and Sophia become engaged, but defer the announcement for a year. Sophia visits friends in Boston, and Hawthorne visits Boston also. Washington Allston's deep approval of Sophia's talents. Elizabeth visits the Emersons in Concord, and writes as if from heaven. Mr. Bancroft remarked to Emerson that Hawthorne was exceptionally thorough in business. Sophia draws and paints vigorously in her happy security of the highest love. Letters from Hawthorne to her. Fragment of a Scrap-Book kept by Hawthorne at the Boston Custom House. Friends rejoice in the engagement when it is made known.
THE EARLY DAYS OF THE MARRIAGE
The beautiful marriage is appreciated by all. Letters to Mrs. Caleb Foote and to Sophia's mother describe life at the Old Manse in Concord. The birth of Una. Emerson, Thoreau, and Hawthorne skate upon the river near the Manse, with differing aspects. The radiance and sublimity of a Massachusetts winter enrich the landscape. Evening readings by Hawthorne to his wife from the classics begun and always continued. Friends call somewhat frequently, at last, from the outside world; Visits to relatives in Boston and Salem. Mary Peabody becomes the wife of Horace Mann. Sophia describes Una's favorable impression upon the circle of friends in Salem and Boston. Returning to the Old Manse renews the enjoyment of nature and peace.
LIFE IN SALEM
Salem becomes their home for the second time. Letter from George W. Curtis while in Europe. Sophia expresses in a letter to Hawthorne her entire satisfaction, though poor and in the midst of petty cares, under his enchanting protection. Daniel Webster's oration in Salem. Alcott's monologue. Thoreau's lecture. Letters about the attack of certain mistaken people upon Hawthorne as a Democrat and official. Hawthorne writes to Horace Mann upon the subject. The best citizens are active to remedy the offense against Hawthorne. George Mullet's letters describing Hawthorne as official and man.
FROM SALEM TO BERKSHIRE
The Hawthornes seek a home by the sea, but drift up to the mountains of Berkshire, and are happy. Letter from Mrs. James R. Lowell, _nee_ White. The Sedgwicks are the kindest friends in the world. Herman Melville is drawn to the life by Mrs. Hawthorne, in a letter to her mother. A poem, by Mrs. Hawthorne, to her husband.
Letters and visits from friends are frequent in Lenox, where a literary group begin to suggest flight to the Hawthornes, who have no liking for a fussy succession of intercourse. Hawthorne reads the "House of the Seven Gables" aloud to his wife as he writes it. He sends a long letter to William B. Pike. Charming long letters come from Herman Melville, though he is not far off.
FROM LENOX TO CONCORD
Letter, full of amused astonishment, from Hawthorne to Mrs. Tappan. Descriptions of the divine Lenox home life, by Mrs. Hawthorne. The removal to West Newton, and finally to Concord, is made. Letter from Maria L. Porter, a kindred nature. Mr. Alcott is lovingly analyzed by Mrs. Hawthorne. Letters to her from Mr. Alcott. Letters to her, from Emerson, of an earlier date. Letters from Margaret Fuller. Mrs. Hawthorne describes The Wayside. General Solomon McNiel wields his affable sword. The Emersons pervade the little town like reigning powers.
THE LIVERPOOL CONSULATE
The Wayside begins to be hospitable in earnest, and Mr. Miller, the artist, talks unceasingly there. Mrs. Hawthorne describes her husband. Hawthorne visits the Isles of Shoals. Ex-President Pierce is insulted and bears it well. Hawthorne visits Brunswick College, and is welcomed back there. A talk on The Wayside hill. The Liverpool Consulate is given to Hawthorne, who visits Washington before embarking for England. Description of Hawthorne by his daughter Rose. The voyage is described in a letter from Mrs. Hawthorne. Field Talfourd pleases her, especially. Mr. Henry Bright shines upon the family. Rose describes him. Mrs. Hawthorne writes to her father about him, his family at their home, and of English ways.
ENGLISH DAYS: I
Hospitable English strangers make the American strangers welcome. An English mansion described by Mrs. Hawthorne. Liverpool organizations honor Hawthorne by attentions. The Squareys of Dacre Hill. Hawthorne's unstinted friendliness towards Americans in distress. The De Quincey family greatly desire to see Hawthorne, Ticknor says. Hawthorne meets the sons of Burns. Liscard Vale and its dinner-party described by Mrs. Hawthorne, who is entertained by the magnificence and the characters richly gathered there. Mrs. Hawthorne tells her father about a visit to Chester on Sunday. The "Westminster Review" praises Hawthorne's art. Distinguished English people seek Hawthorne out. Mr. Martineau described by Mrs. Hawthorne. Mr. Bennoch's first call upon the family. Miss Cushman visits the Hawthornes with her splendid geniality. Mrs. Hawthorne described by her daughter Rose. Hawthorne is hunted to gorgeous dinners against his better instincts. Henry Bright more delightfully drives him to beautiful scenes. "The Scarlet Letter" sells very largely in England, and is read. The Consulate is sighed over by Mrs. Hawthorne.
ENGLISH DAYS: II
The Isle of Man is visited as if it were Fairyland. The Consulate is again described by Mrs. Hawthorne. Hawthorne refuses to let two hundred shipwrecked American soldiers die in destitution, and charters a ship to send them home, at some risk of personal bankruptcy. The death of Mrs. Hawthorne's father is communicated to her by her husband. A letter from Una tells about the family and the scene of the country-side, and refers to Lenox pastimes. Visit of the family to Wales. Hawthorne goes to a dinner-party to meet Mr. Buchanan and Miss Lane. Hawthorne and Mrs. Hawthorne described by Rose. Hawthorne still reads aloud in the evenings. Letters from Hawthorne to Rose. His playfulness and generous thought for his children noted. The home life of the family depicted, and also Mrs. Hawthorne's energy of geniality. A sketch of Mr. Bennoch, and a letter from him. Lord Houghton and others try to bring Hawthorne to society by letter. The family go to London for the ostensible purpose of enjoying society, but Hawthorne is obliged to spend part of the time in Liverpool. Mrs. Hawthorne
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