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The Vault at PfaffsAn Archive of Art and Literature by the Bohemians of Antebellum New York
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clasped Tome on the Pyramids   good subject for a sketch  
Lounged about for an hour, then getting coat and walked Ferry wards  
dropping into Book auction by the way.
  4. Sunday.  Finished reading Albert Smith s  Pottleton Legacy 
which I purchased at the appropriate price of twenty cents in front of
the Post Office. (just for the sake of Ledbury and old Office days.)
Albert Smith is the very price of snobs and finest of cockneyfied
cockney-exterminators. As James s novels are all Walter Scott
and water, so are Smith s, only in a more intense degree. Dickens and water Even
in his address to his readers he plagiarizes Dicken s bon homme and
cordial feeling, abominably.   Ledbury was only a juvenile Mr Pick-
wick, even to the matter of spectacles   Jack Johnson was original
and good.  His Medical Student s Physiology in  Punch  is as also
excellent;   so in a great measure his  Evening Parties.   But a
good tale is too much for him. In the more carefully constructed
novels of Dickens   God help him   he has well studied glorious
old Fielding in the matter of introducing little character or incident
but what has its effect on the story, in its progress   (Tom Jones is
a wonderful book that way.)   Now this is altogether forgotten by Albert
Smith, neither can he construct a good plot.   And character he
is horribly deficient in.  No Paul de Kock, Dickens, Gentism,
Fast men, desperate fun making under trying circumstances;
  and without great talk of the work and labour of doing it.
Page
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume One: page forty-eight
Description:Comments on Albert Smith's ''Pottleton Legacy.''
Date:1849-11-03
Subject:Books and reading; Dickens, Charles; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Smith, Albert
Coverage (City/State):[New York, New York]
Scan Date:2011-02-07

 

Volume
Title:Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries, Volume One
Description:Details Gunn's first year living in the United States, including his experiences with boarding house living in Jersey City and New York City, looking for work as an artist and a writer, publishing his first book ""Mose Among the Britishers"" and brief visits to Philadelphia and Boston.
Subject:Boardinghouses; Books and reading; Drawing; Gunn, Thomas Butler; Publishers and publishing; Theater; Travel
Coverage (City/State):New York, New York; Jersey City, New Jersey; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Boston, Massachusetts
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-two 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.