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The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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  20. Friday.  Levison died this moning, between
two and three o clock.    I had not thought the
crisis so imminent, though, last night, I heard
his groans and cries as I went up stairs.    Mrs
Potter was present, two outside friends of Levison s
(who had volunteered to sit up as watchers, but were
asleep at the time)  and Haney   who had just as-
cended the stairs, and was called in.         Mrs Levison
had lain down in the adjoining room, sharing Mrs
Potter s bed.      She fainted away and had to be
carried from the death chamber subsequently.   Haney
cried out and, they say, kissed poor Louisa s
hand.     He had been dying since the afternoon,
was for the most part delirious, and crying  Make
haste!  Mrs Potter says he recognized her and
squeezed her hand, hard.      Poor Levison!   
  It is just three weeks since the death of his
child.   He has followed her very soon.
  There s no one who knew the man that will
not think kindly of him, now he s gone.   It is
not to be so much regretted for his own sake   for
he had no great portion of health and happiness,
and his child s death lessened that little.   He loved
her very much, and his sorrow aided to loosen
his own hold on life.            Hawthorne writes 
that if a deceased man could return some days
after his demise he would find that he had either
risen or sunk in the estimation of his acquaintances.
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Eight: page one hundred and fifty-four
Description:Regarding the death of William Levison three weeks after the death of his daughter, Ellen.
Subject:Gunn, Thomas Butler; Haney, Jesse; Hawthorne, Nathanial; Levison, Ellen; Levison, William; Levison, William, Mrs.; Potter, Mrs.
Coverage (City/State):[New York, New York]
Scan Date:2011-02-02


Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Eight
Description:Includes descriptions of the process of publishing his book, ''The Physiology of New-York Boarding Houses;'' his poor mental state upon returning to New York from England; meeting Walt Whitman; visits with Fanny Fern, James Parton, and Harriet Jacobs' daughter Louisa who is living with them; a visit to the Catskill Mountains with the Edwards family; moving into the boarding house at 132 Bleecker Street; working on the publication ''European'' with Colonel Hugh Forbes; the death of publisher William Levison and his daughter Ellen in his boarding house; visiting the scene of the murder of a dentist to get a sketch of the suspect; visiting Newport, Rhode Island, on assignment to sketch for Frank Leslie; and the death of his brother-in-law, Joseph Greatbatch.
Subject:Boardinghouses; Bohemians; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Journalism; Medical care; Mental illness; Publishers and publishing; Travel; Women
Coverage (City/State):New York, New York; Newport, Rhode Island
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.