>> Writing through the Centuries
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- Gosse, Edmund, 1849-1928.
[Letter] 1908 February 18, Regent's Park [to] Barclay Squire / Edmund Gosse.
Gosse thanks Barclay for his "extremely kind" letter about Gosse's Father and son, biographical recollections in which he details his relationship with his strict father and his journey into the literary world. Gosse responds at length to Barclay's mention of the "very curious intimacy" which existed in correspondence between Gray and Algarotti. Gosse observes that though they never met, the two men wrote about "indecent matters with that curious... characteristic of leanred persons in the 18th century," but hesitates to offer an opinion on the "shocking" nature of that correspondence until he sees the letters. A literary historian, translator, and critic, Gosse worked in the library at the British Museum (1865-1875), translated Ibsen, edited Swinburne's letters, wrote about his travels in America, lectured on English literature at Trinity College, Cambridge (1885-1890), and was the librarian to the House of Lords (1904-1914).
- Johnson, Lyndon B. (Lyndon Baines), 1908-1973.
[Telegram] 1962 October 23, Washington [to] Francis E. Walter, Washington, D.C. / Lyndon Johnson.
Johnson's telegram explains that due to matters of "highest national urgency," he is unable to keep his appointment to visit Easton. He asks Walter to extend his apologies, and sends his good wishes. Before assuming the duties as President Kennedy's Vice President, Johnson fought in World War II in the Navy, then returned home to serve as a Representative and a Senator from Texas, becoming the 36th President of the United States upon Kennedy's assassination, and fulfilling the duties of that office from 1963 to 1969. The recipient of the letter, Francis E. Walter, served in World War II and as a Representative from Pennsylvania in the seventy-third and fifteen succeeding Congresses, serving from 1933 until his death May 31, 1963. Walter also acted as chairman of the Committee on Un-American Activities.
- Lauder, Thomas Dick, Sir, 1784-1848.
[Letter] 1832 February 17, the Grange House / T.D. Lauder.
Lauder states that he has copied a reply he has received from the Rt. Honorable Charles Grant and appends it below. In his transcription of Grant's remarks on February 15, 1832 from London, the latter states that he will "take an opportunity of speaking to Lord Brougham[?] on the subject." Lauder wrote tales and legends about the Scottish highlands in the second half of the nineteenth century.
- Lee, Robert E. (Robert Edward), 1807-1870.
[Letter] 1860 April 14, Fort Brown, Texas / R[obert E.] Lee.
Lee writes that since his last letter reporting his arrival time was for his dear Annie, this letter will be for his "dear little Agnes in answer to hers." In response to reports of pain in her eyes, Lee counsels, "We must have a great deal of patience in this world, & a great deal of waiting upon events." Lee discusses his schedule, old friends from West Point, and urges the "young people" to complete their chores in the garden and take care of their mother in anticipation of her operation. Lee tells his daughter that he is surrounded by children, describing their games and their parents, as well as nearby churches of various denominations. Lee asks Agnes to tell Rob to "learn to write a good hand, or he will be ashamed to write to his sweetheart." Lee had seven children: George Washington Custis, Mary, William H. Fitzhugh, Agnes, Annie, Robert Edward, and Mildred. Agnes' diaries were later published as Growing up in the 1850s. After graduating from West Point at the top of his class, Lee's skills were recognized during the Mexican War (1846-48), when he captained Gen. Winfield Scott's staff. In 1859 he halted the insurrection led by John Brown at Harper's Ferry in the midst of growing tension between the North and South. He returned to his post in Texas where he wrote this letter; between December 1860 and February 1861, seven states seceded from the Union, including Texas. Though he was offered the command of the Union Army, he followed his native state of Virginia, eventually commanding the Army of Northern Virginia in important victories like the Second Battle of Bull Run, Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville, as well as defeats like Gettysburg, Antietam, and ultimately Appomattox Court House where he surrendered April 9, 1865. Postwar he accepted a position as President of Washington College (later known as Washington and Lee University).
- Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.
[Letter] 1864 May 23, Executive Mansion [to] Attorney General [Edward Bates] / A[braham]. Lincoln.
Lincoln requests the Attorney General [Edward Bates] to grant a pardon to the bearer, William P. Grace for giving the facts for the recitals. The self-educated son of a Kentucky frontiersman, Lincoln served as a Captain in the Black Hawk War, worked as a lawyer, and served as a Representative from Illinois (1847-1849); the national reputation he won in debates with Stephen Douglas for the Senate seat in 1858 (which Douglas won) led to his election as the 16th President of the United States in 1860. He led the Union through the Civil War, giving the Gettysburg Address and signing the Emancipation Proclamation (1863) freeing the slaves; he was reelected in 1864 and assassinated in 1865 at Ford's Theater by John Wilkes Booth. The recipient of the letter, Edward Bates, served as Lincoln's Attorney General from March 1861 to September 1864; prior to assuming these duties, he served as a member of the State legislature and as a Representative from Missouri (1827-1829).
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