Mary Bilton s Birthday.
and Eliza. Stayed till 12, as usual.
A good part of this day, I have been thinking
of the fact that it is the anniversary of Mary
Bilton s birthday. (It s strange and yet fami-
liar to find myself writing that name again.)
She must now be thirty-five or thirty-six
I think the latter, though I used to willingly
cheat myself into belief in the minor age,
she abetting; both of us preferring to suppose her only
one year older than I. Now, after ten
years eleven have passed, when it s
all dead and buried, what does she ap-
pear to have been to my present judgment?
and how am I affected by her memory?
I think I ll put it down.
She was a very lovely girl, certainly. I remem-
ber my sister Naomi using those words,
describing her, after our John Street party,
which introduced her to our folks. She had
beautiful silky-brown hair (I have a little
braid of it, now, done up in a true-lover s knot)
almost invariably worn in smooth and soft,
plain braids (what was then called Madonna
fashion) though I recollect her appearing
on rare occasions in ringlets. Her eyes were
gray-blue, of no unusual size, earnest and
grave enough on occasion and sometimes merry,
|Title:||Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Thirteen: page fourteen|
|Description:||Regarding his thoughts about Mary Bilton on her birthday.|
|Subject:||Bilton, Mary; Birthdays; Edwards, Eliza; Gunn, Naomi; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Women|
|Coverage (City/State):||[New York, New York]|
|Title:||Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Thirteen|
|Description:||Includes descriptions of boarding house living, his freelance writing and drawing work, antics of New York literary Bohemians, Frank Cahill fleeing for England after spending money that was meant for ''The New York Picayune,'' visits to the Edwards family, the state of Charles Damoreau's marriage, a sailing excursion to Nyack with the Edwards family and other friends on the Fourth of July, a fight between Fitz James O'Brien and House at Pfaff's, witnessing a fire at Washington Market, the execution of pirate Albert Hicks on Bedloe's Island, an excursion aboard the ship Great Eastern, a vacation at Grafton with the Edwards family, his growing friendship with Sally Edwards, Lotty Granville's behavior with Brentnall and Hill at his boarding house, Frank Bellew's return to England, and visits to dance houses in the Fourth Ward with friends for an article.|
|Subject:||Boardinghouses; Bohemians; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Journalism; Marriage; Publishers and publishing; Women|
|Coverage (City/State):||New York, New York; Grafton, 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.|