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store.   Called at Haun s and saw Mrs H.    Learnt that Ben had been ill
for a long time, being in danger of losing his sight, but has now recovered.
Jack Rankin she thought was dead.           Left and along the plank road
to the south of Jersey, skirting the river Communipaw-wards, a fair spring
afternoon, sunlight, a fresh breeze blowing, silvery clouds floating in the sea 
of blue above.   An arm of the bay prevents nearer approach to Communipaw,
so it has to be doubled, walking inland, and almost returning.   Even as
one might visit Carthage s ruins did I jog on, intent on seeing the spot from
which Oloffe the Dreamer and his heroic Dutchmen voyaged forth to select
the spot whereupon to found the future City.  Leaving the plank road, and
striking off to the left I passed down a country road, now and then a
cart meeting me, laden with shad, or other fish from Communipaw.
Arrived there, also for the degeneracy of this restless innovating age  
no substantial brick or stone-built mansions with weathercocks on top do I see
but white painted, timber built modern mansions all;   but three stone
built dwellings, and the mortar seams thereof appeared uncomfortably new.
Yet withal it was a most pleasant spot. And when issuing out on
the margin of the Hudson, I saw these cottages all surrounded by
the peaches and apple trees with their beautiful blossoms;   the rich deep
greensward beneath them; the row of planks dividing the stones and
shingle from the path, the shad poles and oyster boats in the clear water
scarcely stirred by the luxuriously lulling ripple, pretty Jersey on the 
left divided by the indentation of watter, a green neck of land by Mill
Creek, New York afar off, Governors Island and Gubbet Island  
(ah for the ghostly visitors of Vanderscamp!) and above all the beautiful
evening sky, I could not but own all was very fair to see.   So
passing on to the corner of the village looking towards Jersey City, I sat me 
down at the rocks, shingles and oyster shells, sea-weed and water at my feet
Page
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Two: page ninety-one
Description:Describes a visit to Jersey City and Communipaw.
Date:1851-05-02
Subject:Gunn, Thomas Butler; Haun, Ben; Haun, Mrs.; Leisure; Nature; Rankin, John; Spring
Coverage (City/State):Jersey City, [New Jersey]; [New York, New York]
Scan Date:2011-02-07

 

Volume
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume Two
Description:Includes descriptions of Gunn's attempts to find drawing work among New York publishers, brief employment in an architectural office, visits to his soldier friend William Barth on Governors Island, boarding house living, drawing at actor Edwin Forrest's home at Fonthill Castle, and sailing and walking trips taken with friends.
Subject:Boardinghouses; Books and reading; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Military; Publishers and publishing; Religion; Travel; 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.