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The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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that she had hoped, now, to have had some pleasure, time,
&c; professing that she should never love her unborn offspring,
and wishing to prevent its birth.     Indeed she would have effec-
ted this if the doctor had not deceived her as to the time of her
approaching delivery   so the child s life was only saved by a
trick.        All this was spoken of openly among the women, for
some months past.   There as no repugnance to maternity on
the grounds that the little helpless creature s prospects in life
might not be bright ones   all originated in pure selfishness.  It
would be a trouble, and she would hate it.   Patten deferred a
little to her now of the matter, wasn t particular any way.  Mrs
Potter didn t approve of abortion, but looked upon it not with
the amount of horror which it should excite in a woman s breast,
for   my informant told me   there d been a similar case in her
own family.      In fact, as I ve long known, Americans are
a nation of abortionists, and think nothing of tampering with
the most sacred of relations   maternity.   In most cases, where
ever I ve been intimate enough to go behind the scenes in any
family in American life, and had a chance to look deep enough
I ve discovered some such damnable affair.   Only a week ago
Woodward, in answer to my inquiry as to the number of his
children, replying that he had but two, declared, also, that
he didn t believe in having more, pulling down and making a 
slave of a woman &c.   I remember Will Waud s telling
how Levison introducing his only daughter Ellen, said  It
don t follow we couldn t have more if we chose.  His wife
was present.  Waud said he felt awkward at such an in-
timation.  I believe, though, that Levison did wish for more
children.  But his wife      .        Often enough I ve heard
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Nine: page eighty-three
Description:Regarding Mrs. Patten's unhappiness about her pregnancy.
Subject:Abortion; Childbirth; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Levison, Ellen; Levison, William; Levison, William, Mrs.; Patten, Willis; Patten, Willis, Mrs.; Potter, Mrs.; Pregnancy; Waud, William; Women; Woodward
Coverage (City/State):[New York, New York]
Scan Date:2011-02-02


Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Nine
Description:Includes descriptions of boardinghouse living, a picnic at Hoboken with other New York artists and journalists, his drawing and writing work in New York, attending a lecture by Lola Montez, visits to James Parton and Fanny Fern and the Edwards family, a controversy over Fitz James O'Brien's story ''The Diamond Lens,'' artist Sol Eytinge's relationship with writer Allie Vernon, the suicide of writer Henry William Herbert, antics of the New York Bohemians, the interest of people living in his boarding house in spiritualism, a visit to his friend George Bolton's farm in Canada, a visit to Niagara Falls, and a scandal involving Harbormaster Willis Patten, who lives in his boarding house.
Subject:Boardinghouses; Bohemians; Farms; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Publishers and publishing; Suicide; Travel; Women
Coverage (City/State):New York, New York; Rochester, New York; Elmira, New York; Paris, Ontario, Canada
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.