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Full text of "A letter to her cousin : Elizabeth Todd Grimsly, September 29, 1861"

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Elizabeth Todd Grimsl^ 

SEPTEMBER 29, 1861 

Privately Printed, 1917 

Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

State of Indiana through the Indiana State Library 

September 29th, '61 

Executive Mansion 

My Dear Lizzie : 

I have been intending writing 
you for some days. I have been quite 
sick with chills for some days, this is 
my day of rest so I am sitting up. I am 
beginning to feel very weak* If they 
cannot be broken in a few days, Mr. Lin- 
coln wants me to go North and remain 
until cold weather. Where so much is 
demanded of me I cannot afford to be 
delicate, if a different climate will 
restore my health. If at the close of 
this week I am still sick, I expect I 
will go up to Boston, take quarters at 
the Revere House for two or three weeks 
and return here in November. I trust 
however, I may not be under the necessity, 
yet I am feeling very far from well. Sep- 
tember & early in October are always con- 
sidered unhealthy months here, my racked 
frame certainly bears evidence to the 

fact. Have just received a note from 
Willis, with all his weaknesses he is 
kind hearted. Gov. Newell & Halstead are 
frequently here as who is not? I presume 
you are aware your brother is elected to 
Congress. I received a letter from 
Elizabeth E. the other day. Very kind & 
aff • yet very characteristic* Said if 
rents and means permitted, she would like 
to make us a visit, I believe for a sea- 
son. I am weary of intrigue, when she is 
by herself she can be very agreeable, 
especially when her mind is not dwelling 
on the merits of fair daughters and a 
talented son-in-law» Such personages 
always speak for themselves. I often re- 
gret E.P.E» little weaknesses, after all, 
since my the election she is the only one 
of my sisters who has appeared to be 
pleased with our advancement you know 
this to be so. Notwithstanding Dr» 
Wallace has received his portion in life 
from the Administration, yet Frances 
always remains quiet. E» in her letter 
said Frances often spoke of Mr. L's kind- 
ness in giving him his place. She little 
knows what a hard battle I had for it, and 
how near he came getting nothing. 

Poor unfortnnate Ann, inasmuch as she 
possesees such a miserable disposition 
and so false a tongue. How far dear 
Lizzie are we removed from such a person. 
Even if Smith succeeds in being a rich 
man, what advantage will it be to him, 
who has gained it in some cases most 
unjustly, and with such a woman, whom no 
one respects, whose tongue for so many 
years, has been considered "no slander" 
and as a child and young girl could not 
be outdone in falsehood, "Truly the 
Leopard cannot change his spots". She is 
so seldom in my thoughts® I rave so much 
more, that is attractive, both in bodily 
presence, and my minds eye, to interesc 
me. I grieve for those who have to come 
in contact with her malice, yet even that 
is so well understood, the object of her 
wrath, generally rises, with good people, 
in proportion to her vindictiveness. 
What will you name the hill on which I 
must be placed. Her, putting it on that 
ground with Mrs. Brown, was only to hide 
her envious feeling toward you» Tell Ann 
for me, to quote her own expression. She 
is becoming still further removed from 
"Queen Victoria's Court" 

How foolish between us to be discussing, 
such a person. Yet really it is amusing, 
in how many forms, human nature can ap- 
pear before us» Nicolay told me, that 
Caleb Smith, said to him, a few days since 
that he had just received a letter from 
Kellogg, of Cin. that he did not know why 
he had not received his appointment as 
Consul. Is not the idea preposterous? 
Did I tell you that **Hollis»* has been 
here, came to see me frequently, and 
always enquired with much interest, after 
you. The **Cap** also dined here a few 
days since, still as refined and elegant 
as ever. I have so much to. tell you, I 
do not know, what first to write about. 
Wykoff, the '* Chevalier, * * enlightened me 
about Baker's and Julia's proceedings in 
New York in Feb. Looked a little 
quizzical, about her not remaining in W. 
as she expected a long stay and much 
gayety. Did you say, she only numbered _5 
months . I thought she had gently insin- 
uated, when she was here. Hill Lamon, I 
believe is now in 111. mustering recruits. 
I know you will be sorry to hear, that 
our colored Mantuamaker, Elizabeth, lost 
her only son and child in the battle of 

Lex», Mo» She is heart broken. She is a 
very remarkable woman herself. The 
weather is so beautiful, why is it, that 
we cannot feel well. The air feels very 
much like the early days when I used to 
have chills in Ill», those days have 
passed, and I know I have no cause to 
grieve over my lot. If the country was 
only peaceful, all would be well. If I 
thought, sending your Father, a pass, 
would bring him here, I would do so with 
pleasure. Give my best love to them both. 
Mrs. Don Piatt, calls here in an hour's 
time. I must mount my white Cachemere 
and receive her. We now occupy the 
stately guest room. She spoke last winter 
of the miserably furnished rooms. I think 
she will be astonished at the change. I 
am not well enough to go down. Write 
very soon and very often to, 

your attached Cousin, 

Mary Lincoln 

P. S. William has given me |3.00 to hand 
you. I will have it in bill shape, to 
send you in a few days, when I write next. 
Strange he called upon you. 

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