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The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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left to read, also one from Dillon Mapother to his folks at home, dating
nigh a year back.   Copy of Parton s  Life Illustrated  from N Y, with
parts of my last letter to Alf Waud in it.
  15.  Thursday.   A letter from Hannah, in honor of my birthday.
In-doors all day, mostly writing.
  16.  Friday.  In-doors till evening.  Wrote letter to Hannah.
At night to Sams, and there in company with him and Minnie, till
12 1/2 .  When leaving, and reaching the street, I saw in the sky the
reflection of a great conflagration, so set off for the spot, in com-
pany with a young Londoner, who was bound on the same crowd.
As we reached the Blackfriars Road, we find a great desultory
crowd assembled, overhead a volume of smoke and flame drifting
westwards, and a hail of fire sparks falling.  The fire was
raging in the rear of the block of buildings to the right of the Surrey
side of the bridge, as you pass city-wards.  A timber merchants
yards, factories, and saw-mill, engine and boiler houses, grainaries
and flour warehouses were all blazing, water freezing in the hose-
pipes, and a fierce deathly cold wind blowing.  From the Bridge
the view was magnificent.  The whole city was lit up; the red glare
fell on tower and steeple, on distant spire and weathercock, on
St Pauls cross and hall, on the distant bridges and on the mon-
strous snow covered ice flakes hiding the surface of the river, here and
there only a sluggishly shifting pool being visible.  A steam boat with
fire engine on board lay at the wharf fronting the scene, in the
space thawed by the conflagration, but it s efforts availed little, and
indeed the crowd cried out more than once that it had caught fire.
They were a very good-humored orderly lot, over increasing in numbers,
Page
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Seven: page twenty-six
Description:Describes witnessing a fire burn in London.
Date:1855-02-14
Subject:Bennett, Hannah; Fires; Gunn, Minnie; Gunn, Samuel, Jr.; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Mapother, Dillon; Parton, James; Waud, Alfred
Coverage (City/State):London, [England]
Coverage (Street):Blackfriars Road
Scan Date:2011-02-02

 

Volume
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Seven
Description:Includes an account of his family history and descriptions of his visits with family and friends in England, witnessing a procession for Louis Napoleon in London, traveling in Paris with his brothers Charley and Edwin, his friend Harry Price's mental illness, his journey across the Atlantic to New York on the ship Washington, the marriage of Fanny Fern and James Parton, meetings of the Ornithoryncus Club in New York, and Alfred Waud's elopement with Mary Brainard.
Subject:Bohemians; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Marriage; Mental illness; Publishers and publishing; Travel; Women
Coverage (City/State):London, England; Paris, France; New York, New York
Note:Thomas Butler Gunn was born February 15, 1826, in Banbury, England, and came to New York in 1849. During the Civil War he worked as a correspondent for the New York Tribune and the New York Evening Post. He returned to England in 1863, and died in Birmingham in April 1903. The collection includes twenty-one volumes of his diaries, including newspaper clippings, letters, photographs, sketches, and various other items inserted by Gunn. Diary entries date from July 7, 1849, to April 7, 1863, and include his experiences with the New York publishing and literary world, his descriptions of boarding houses, his travels throughout the United States, and his experiences traveling with the Federal army as a Civil War correspondent.
Publisher:Missouri History Museum
Rights:Copyright 2011 Missouri History Museum.
Source:Page images, transcriptions, and metadata of the Thomas Butler Gunn diaries have been provided by the Missouri History Museum.