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The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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he sat talking to us, he was a sight to see. The
animation with which he plunged into details, the illus-
trations he extemporized with objects on the table, books,
pipes &c, the triumphant shyness of his demonstration
  all were unique in their way.   He wore a shabby greyish
coat and trousers and gaiters, as he almost invariably
does.     His head is one which might justify phrenologists
in pensioning him   such an illustration of their science.
Where ideality, veneration &c should be there is almost
a declivity, while the back part of the head is confoundedly
developed.  He is, really, the hardest sort of infidel I ever
met, I don t think he believes or even wishes to believe
in anything higher than this present life.    Haney had
closed the windows, the stove was blazing full, we
were both smoking, and compelled by courtesy to re-
main, at least some time, to listen to the Col.   I 
looked out at the cool, sunny Sunday streets and
felt feverish and bored.      How he did talk!  Half
an hour gave me courage to escape.      When he came
out, I relieved my conscience by giving him a little silver.
His wife (?) and daughter are suffering the greatest
privations in London.      All these ex-patriots speak
ill of one another, attribute inordinate vanity and venal-
ity to their co-mates and fellows in exile.      This
man Forbes, is, no doubt, a brave and good soldier  
horribly out of place in the world.   He ought to be
fighting England s battles in India, now, as ought
that donkey of a  Meejor.   What a useless animal is
Page
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Ten: page one hundred
Description:Describes a visit from Colonel Forbes.
Date:1859-01-30
Subject:Forbes, Hugh; Forbes, Hugh, Mrs.; Forbes, Miss; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Haney, Jesse; Piercy
Coverage (City/State):[New York, New York]
Scan Date:2011-01-31

 

Volume
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Ten
Description:Includes descriptions of an explosion of a boat on the North River, New York literary Bohemians, boarding house living at 132 Bleecker Street, his freelance writing and drawing work, the death of writer Mort Thomson's young wife Anna, working on the publication ''Constellation,'' visits to the Edwards family, a falling out with Fanny Fern over an article he wrote criticizing ''The New York Ledger,'' a rumor that Fitz James O'Brien is the heir to an Irish baronetcy, and a change of landladies at his boarding house.
Subject:Boardinghouses; Bohemians; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Journalism; Publishers and publishing; Women
Coverage (City/State):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.