The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Haden, Deborah Delano
Record 6 of 259

System Number: 06661
Date: 16, 18 and 19 July 1847
Author: George Washington Whistler[1]
Place: Moscow
Recipient: Anna Matilda Whistler[2]
Place: [England]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: Whistler W655
Document Type: ALS


July 16th 1847. Friday

My own dearest Annie,

how happy I have just been made in reading your dear letter. finished at Fleet wood 30 June - thank you for it dearest. you are quite well again - I have just returned here from [Tela?] and Mrs Howards[3] who put George Princes[4] letter into my hands. it contained yours and tells me that he had sent to me one on friday and saturday last letters - from America & England - and doubtless among them one from you dearest - is it not provoking none of these have I received - Prince had sent them to [Teven?] thinking they would reach me there - but I had left - when leaving there however I had directed them to forwarded [sic] to me here in Moscow - They were to be sent to care of Krafft[5] I find [that he?] left town [will not be back?] until day after tomorrow so I cant get them till then - but I feel thankful that I [illegible] [received your] last which Prince has [illegible] sent here direct - and this enables me to bear well the other disappointment so you see dearest I'm getting to be a reasonable man. I am so truly thankful dearest to find you are so well, and enjoying yourself with our good friends, and I shall even feel grateful to our good Sister and Mr Winstanley[6] for this kind indulgence to our dear boys[7] and somehow [p. 2] I can't help thinking they will try hard to deserve it - how I do long to see you all once more - Tis not a very good time dearest to ask me how I would like to place them at school when just can't for the life of me make up my mind to your leaving them - yet I will try in good time to be prepared to make any sacrifices that my boys demand for their good. I feel dearest that so far as school education is concerned that nothing could be so well as leaving them in England - I wish before I left S Petersburg I had occasion to call on General [Tchifkim?] you remember him - Mr Lamartine[8] used to be tutor to his son - The General asked me what I had done and intended doing with my boys - so after telling what had been done and my perplexity about the future - he said why do you not leave them in England - tis the best place - my word for it - I told him of my desire that they should profit of my stay in this Country to learn the languages - Tis possible said he they might have some advantage here in that respect - but is it worth the sacrifice of the more solid and proper education that England will [offer?] - and from which our very atmosphere seems to reject and after all, since [illegible] of the young men who have many languages here, know nothing else and those languages serve only to make them conceited and useless - they think because they know someing that others do not that they are superior in everything.

[p. 3] There is [some?] truth dearest in the General's remarks but we are so apt to think that our boys [are] an exception to general rules that I don't think I entirely agree with them - besides dearest I attach such very much more importance to your influence over them just now than to all other things but we will think more of it you will tell me more of it - of course under no circumstances would I be willing to separate them - they must both go together[,] good night -

Sunday 18th

General Krafft returned to town this evening, but telling me no letters have come from [Jenen?] the stupid people must be keeping them - I leave here dearest tomorrow morning [for Ten?] where I shall find them - I am to return here in three or four days to meet the Count and then set off with His Excellency fot St Petersburg - I did not thank you my own dearest Annie for the [slips?] of American news you sent me - [those from?] Fairbanks[9] I have not got on sufficiently on with any letters at [Taner?] I shall be [illegible] happy dearest if you [could send to Lord on here an club?]
serve him just now, no one has taken Mr Georges place yet - I [have stayed?] in the house all day - it is quite warm, with occasional showers- the weather generallyhas been quite fine but too warm - this afternoon after tea I took a short walk with an American who arrived here today - to show him The big bells and big gun at the Kremlin - he is a young [Gent?] ] Mr Newton[10] from Providence! dont know him - but he told me of all the Providence people.

Perhaps dearest I should tell you something of my trip [p. 4] to [Tala?] it was not remarkable for anything but a very good [word?] - well regulated posting - the [best hotel?] at [Tabor?] I ever saw - the most hospitable gentleman Mr. Trowheeler[11] at [Tale?] - and Mr. W's father - I met them only to see [the] place and the armory - I much confess it was handy with a note of some 220 [illegible] - but this I should not have known had I not tried it - the place has some 40000 inhabitants all gunsmiths and steel and cross [trinket?] makers - my only purchase was - dont laugh - a coffee pot - but such a coffee pot a perfect model of a Locomotive - I stopped to look at in a window thinking it was only a very pretty model, but when I found it was a coffee pot too. I could not resist adding it to my collection -

Yesterday I met in the streets here a rather novel procession - [avail to me?] - first was an open carriage drawn by six horses with four young ladies "all in white" - next five large platforms all drawn by six horses, these platforms covered with highly ornamented cases [of drawers?] - boxes [&c &c?] and hanging over the lids of each splendid carpet rugs - and all this to exhibit a bride elect with her [trousseau?] she is to be married today - this an ancient custom among Russian merchants - good night dearest

Monday 19th

I am just off dearest for [Town/Tena?] where I hope to [get another?] letter from you and from our dear Deborah[12] too. it seems an age since I heard from her - she is enjoying herself now I hope in Paris. [Tell her?] I shall write her immediately on my return to St Petersburg. which I hope will be in about a week - kindest love to our dear Sisters and Mr Winstanley[,] kiss our darling James & Willie. I long to hear from them - and remember me sincerely to Mr & Mrs Ormerod[13] and all our friends - May God bless you my ever dear Anna

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1.  George Washington Whistler
George Washington Whistler (1800-1849), engineer, JW's father [more].

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

3.  Howards
Mrs Howard, not identified.

4.  George Prince
George H. Prince, engineer.

5.  Krafft
Nicolai Osipovich Kraft (b. 1798), engineer, a St Petersburg colleague of George Washington Whistler [more].

6.  sister and Mr Winstanley
Eliza Isabella Winstanley (1788-1857), née McNeill, JW's aunt, AMW's half-sister [more], and John Winstanley (1776-1859), solicitor, JW's uncle [more].

7.  boys
JW and William McNeill Whistler (1836-1900), physician, JW's brother [more].

8.  Lamartine
Lamartine, tutor in the French language.

9.  Faitbanks
Fairbanks, a merchant.

10.  Newton
Not identified.

11.  Trowheeler
Not identified.

12.  Deborah
Deborah ('Debo' or 'Sis') Delano Haden (1825-1908), née Whistler, JW's half-sister [more]

13.  Ormerod
Richard Ormerod, engineer [more], and his wife.