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Vol. VII, No. 4 July, 1922 

Smith College Studies 
in History 




Historian of Northampton, Massachusetts 

By His Niece 

Published Quarterly by the Department of History of Smith College 




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Vol. VII, No. 4 July, 1922 

Smith College Studies 
in History 




Historian of Northampton, Massachusetts 

By His Niece 

Published Quarterly by the Department of History of Smith College 



r 7' 

Recollections of 
James Russell Trumbull 

Historian of Northampton, Massachusetts. 


On the 21st of December, 1825, an only son was born in 
Haydenville, Massachusetts, to Guy and Clarissa (Nash) Trum- 
bull. This New England boy was the eighth generation in an 
unbroken line of New England ancestors, which can be traced 
back on both sides to the first half of the 17th century. 

William Nash, the progenitor of his race in this country, came 
from England to Boston in 1637 and the following year joined a 
party who sailed around to the coast of Connecticut and made a 
new settlement, then called Quinipiac, now New Haven. His 
son Timothy moved with his family to Hadley, Mass., the next 
generation settled in Hatfield and the following one went to 
WilHamsburg, where a permanent home was established on Nash 
Hill. One of this line of Nashes, Thomas by name, married 
Martha Smith, daughter of Canada Wait, so named because she 
was born while her mother, the wife of Benjamin Wait of Hat- 
field, was a captive of the Indians in Canada. The great grand- 
daughter of Thomas and Martha (Smith) Nash was Clarissa, 
who was born and brought up in Williamsburg and became the 
wife of Guy Trumbull. She was a woman of sterling qualities, 
very skillful in everything pertaining to the household, a beautiful 
sewer and an indefatigable worker. But her own efficiency 
caused her to be somewhat stern and exacting in the bringing up 
of her children. The rules she laid down for them made small 
allowance of time for rest or play. "Don't sit still !" she would 
say, "If you are tired, lay down what you are doing and take up 
some other work. That will rest you." Early widowed, she 
made a brave fight to support her three children, and lived to see 
them all grown up. She died at the age of 80 years. 

Jonathan Trumbull, great great grandson of Governor Trum- 

144 Smith College Studies in History 

bull of Connecticut, in his biography of this illustrious ancestor, 
has traced the name Trumbull back to the year 1315, when a 
Scotch peasant was mentioned in an official document as "Wil- 
lielmo dicto Turnebull," because he had saved the life of King 
Robert, the Bruce, by turning aside an infuriated bull. The 
grateful monarch rewarded his deliverer with a grant of land and 
a coat of arms, bearing the device of three bulls' heads and the 
motto : "Fortuna favet audaci." This peasant is without doubt 
the progenitor of the once powerful Scottish Clan of Turnbulls, 
which existed until about the middle of the 16th century, when 
it was broken up by rival clans and English armed forces. There 
is little doubt that the Trumbulls of New England were descend- 
ants of this Scottish Clan, the change in the name being accounted 
for by the prominence of the "r" in the Scotch pronunciation. In- 
deed, "Scotchmen tell us that the name is spelled Turnbull and 
pronounced Trumbull to this day." 

The first of this name to cross the Atlantic was John Trum- 
bull, who came over from England or Scotland in 1643 and settled 
in Rowley, Massachusetts. Soon afterwards he moved to Suf- 
field, Connecticut, where he and his descendants bore their full 
part in the colonial, revolutionary and later history of New Eng- 
land. The most famous of these descendants were the two 
Jonathans, both Governors of Connecticut, the elder being, as is 
supposed, the original of the term "Brother Jonathan." John 
Trumbull, son of the first and brother of the second Governor 
Trumbull, also added fame to the family name by his well-known 
paintings in the city of Washington and elsewhere. 

Guy Trumbull's ancestor was Ammi, brother of the first Gov- 
ernor Trumbull's father. This Ammi moved from Suffield to 
East Windsor, Connecticut, where his sons and sons' sons en- 
gaged for many years in manufacturing. Here his great grand- 
son Guy was born in 1786. From his earliest childhood the boy 
showed a remarkable inventive genius. The following story was 
frequently related in our family as an absolute fact. One day 
when he was about four years old, he came into the house from 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 145 

play, crying as if his heart would break. On being asked what 
was the matter, he sobbed out : "I can't make my toads hop to- 
gether !" His mother investigated and found that he had made 
a tiny yoke and yoked two toads together with a little drag at- 
tached in imitation of those drawn by oxen. The tragedy was 
that the toads had so little comprehension of the scheme, that first 
one hopped and then the other. 

As he grew older he displayed great skill in the use of car- 
penter's tools. In the attic of the Trumbull house in this city 
stands a cradle of quaint design which he made for his children 
and in which they were all three lulled to repose. We were 
told that he could tune any instrument and that he made several 
violins, though not one of them has been preserved. 

His business, however, was the manufacture of machinery. 
As a young man he came to Massachusetts and became a member 
of the firm, Hayden, Trumbull & Company, Manufacturers of 
Machinery, Looms, etc., in Haydenville. Among his papers are 
still preserved letters patent, signed by James Madison, President, 
granted in 1812 to Gilbert Brewster, Guy Trumbull and James 
Mathes for a machine for spinning cotton wool, flax and tow; 
also drawings and specifications of a loom made by Guy Trum- 
bull for weaving broadcloth. There is besides a petition ad- 
dressed to John Quincy Adams, Secretary of State, for a patent 
on Guy Trumbull's invention of the substitution of "glass instead 
of metal or wood for steps and collars for spindles to run in 
and uppon." Another invention of his was a liquid by which 
steel rods could be rendered pliable so that they could be straight- 
ened when they had become bent. At his death a little of this 
liquid was left in a bottle, but the chemical analysis of those days 
was unequal to the task of discovering its ingredients, and the 
secret was lost. 

Guy Trumbull was a man of genial, kindly nature, full of 
quiet humor, which broke out in the most unexpected ways. In 
a business letter now in our possession, which he wrote to his 
brother-in-law under date of November 20, 1825, he concludes 
as follows : 

146 Smith College Studies in History 

"I am writing by a very bad lamp, four like it would make a 
total darkness, that is all the excuse I have for the bad spelling." 

Strictly honest, generous almost to a fault, affectionate and 
kind in his family, it is no wonder that he was universally liked 
and respected, and that his children adored him. Julia, the oldest, 
who was four years old when he died, often recounted to her 
children the few incidents of her dearly loved father which she 
could recall ; and James, nearly two years younger, was the prin- 
cipal actor in a pretty family scene, which a sister of my grand- 
mother used often to relate. Sitting in his high chair at the table 
beside his father, the little fellow would lay down his spoon and 
throw his arms around his father's neck, crying : "O my dear 
papa ! my sweet papa ! my pretty papa ! how I love you !'' 

Guy Trumbull died of brain fever when he was but 42 years 
old, leaving his family, to which a third child, Martha, was added 
a month after his death, without financial resources. Those were 
bitter days for the mother, but she bravely undertook the task of 
supporting her children, learning to make men's garments, which 
at that time were commonly sent out from the tailor's shop to be 
finished. It was a hard life, plying the needle all day and much 
of the evening and receiving but little money in return. Yet with 
the strictest economy and the help of kind friends and relatives, 
she was able to accomplish it. 


Not long after the death of her husband, grandmother moved 
with her little family to Southampton, Massachusetts. So the 
first conscious years of her son's life were spent in that small 
town where everyone knew everybody else and each shared the 
other's burdens. In such a New England community there may be 
gossip, jealousy and petty bickerings, but the sympathy and help- 
fulness always manifested toward anyone in sorrow or need, can 
be fully appreciated only by those who have experienced them. 
Everyone was attracted to the delicate, sensitive, affectionate boy, 
who soon acquired in this new home a circle of uncles and aunts, 
and one of the near neighbors was always "Grandpa Chapman" 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 147 

to him. This Grandpa was accustomed to regale the Httle lad 
during his daily visits, with some dainty such as he seldom had 
at home, where the fare was necessarily very plain. His mother, 
finding this out, forbade the child to ask for anything to eat when 
he went to the neighbors'. The next day as he appeared at the 
door, grandpa called out: '"Good morning, my little man, and 
what did you please to want to-day?" "Oh anything," was the 
quick reply, "a piece of pie or a piece of cake or an apple or any- 
thing you please to give me." 

Just how long this little family circle remained unbroken I 
have been unable to discover, but we know that James left home 
while he was still a small child, and went to live in the family of 
his father's sister Sarah, who was the wife of Major George 
Howard, and lived in Tompkinsville, Staten Island. Between the 
boy and his three cousins, daughters of the family, a strong at- 
tachment was formed which is evident from letters written long 
afterward, in which they always addressed him as dear brother, 
and manifested great interest in his welfare. Further than this 
we know little of this period of his life. 

Meanwhile his younger sister, Martha, was taken by another of 
the father's sisters and went in 1837 to live in Steubenville, Ohio, 
where she remained six years with Uncle and Aunt Marsh, who 
had no children. So for two years Julia was the only one at 
home with her mother, as James did not return to Southampton 
till May 8, 1839. This home-coming was very likely due to the 
illness of his Aunt Howard, who died in September of that year. 

Two weeks later the 13-year-old boy went to live with Luther 
Edwards, father of the late Henry L. Edwards of Northampton. 
With this Mr. Edwards, who was a Southampton farmer, James 
lived for the next three years, working on the farm while attend- 
ing Sheldon Academy. To this change in his life no reference 
can be found except the record in the family Bible : "James came 
home Wednesday, May 8th, went to Mr. Edwards' Thursday, 
May 23, 1839." 

The following letter, written a little over a year later by the 

148 Smith College Studies in History 

oldest of the cousins, Mary (Howard) Hitchcock, shows how 
large a place he occupied in the family : 

Staten Island, July 11, 1840. 
Dear Brother James : 

I was very glad indeed to receive your letter, news from you 
will always be interesting to me, for you seem very near to me, 
as near I think as a brother could. Little Dan often talks about 
Uncle Jim. "Where is he, mama?" he will say. "I want to see 
him." Mr. Hitchcock says: "Tell James to keep his eye to the 
windward and not let the whigs get the ascendancy." Yesterday 
we sent a speech of Mr. Duncan of Ohio and a "New Era." We 
will for the future often send you one. I am very glad that you 
are improving so much in your writing and orthography. Do 
not criticise this letter for I am in great haste. When Pa and 
the girls were in Windsor, they expected to visit you, but on 
account of Pa's business, we were obliged to write and call him 
home a week sooner than he expected, and that is the reason why 
you did not see them. Tommy is well and he told me to give you 
his love. Mother Hitchcock often talks about you as her beau 
that used to walk to church with her. She will never forget it. 
Sarah talks of visiting Priest Bartlett's family this month, if she 
does she will endeavor to come and see you. Now James you 
cannot tell how much it pleases us all to know that you are doing 
well. You must write to me again soon. You will see some 
more papers travelling up there soon .... You and mother 
must write again soon. Julia and Sarah and all send much love, 
and believe me James. 

Your ever affectionate sister, 


Grandmother's three children had each received some years 
before, a small legacy, probably about $60. With this amount 
and the accrued interest Julia entered Mount Holyoke Seminary 
in 1840 and graduated in 1843, in the sixth year of the institution. 
Those were the days when great stress was laid ui)on the writing 
of compositions. A package of compositions which she wrote 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 149 

during these years is still in my possession and with them also 
a few, written by her brother in 1840, '41 and '42, no doubt as 
part of the tasks which were required of him at the academy, but 
showing evidence of her interest and oversight. To one of these 
papers, which was copied by her, a word of praise was appended 
by the Academy teacher, Mr. Lewis Clarke. 

For a lad of 14 to 16 years these compositions show a rather 
unusual command of language, a sense of humor and a vivid 
though crude imagination. In one of the earliest he discovers, 
after a search through his father's library, that "Composition is 
derived from the Latin word Compo, writing, and the Greek 
word Sition, to put together;" and that the word was invented 
by an old German Demagog "who, tired of using the rod, set his 
wits to work to find a substitute. How well he has succeeded, 
even beyond the expectations of the most sanguine ! But for my 
part I wish he had stuck to the good old proverb : 'the rod for the 
fool's back'." 

That 1841 and '42 were years of uncertainty and anxiety as 
to his future, is evident from a package of letters which he pre- 
served and which were written to him by the Howards. One of 
these, dated August 19, 1841, advises him to accept the offer of a 
position in the store of his cousin, Horace Trumbull, in Hartford, 
Connecticut. But this cousin writes on the 25th of that month 
to say that he has made other arrangements and that James "need 
not take any further trouble about the matter." 

In April, 1842, Cousin Mary again writes : 
"Dear James : 

I suppose you are anxious by this time to hear something more 
from this quarter of the globe. I have intended writing for the 
last week or two, but have been prevented by one thing or an- 
other .... Father sends his love to you and says he 
wishes you for the present to apply yourself to your studies and 
improve as much as possible, and as soon as he can find any em- 
ployment for you he will send for you. So you see James you 
are not forgotten if the times are hard. Everybody is com- 

150 Smith College Studies in History 

plaining now of hard times and no money, and of course we can- 
not expect to be exempt. As for Mr. Hitchcock he has had 
nothing to do since he left the custom house. . . . It is very 
sickly here at present and has been all winter. I am sitting in 
Sister Julia's bedroom with herself and husband. Father is here 
too. I came in to sit a while with them and thought I would 
write a few lines to let you know that we think and talk of you. 
Father told me what to say to you from him. My youngest boy, 
your namesake, is as fat as butter. You would like to see the 

children, they have grown so much Goodbye, James, 

I am called home by the little ones. 

Your affectionate sister, 

Mary Hitchcock." 

The fact that this letter, which was addressed to Southampton, 
was forwarded by his mother to Northampton and a reference in 
the next one to type-setting indicate that James had already begun 
work in the Gazette printing office. 

To the above letter his mother added the following postcript : 

"Dear Son : 

This letter was handed me yesterday from the mail. I shall 
embrace the first opportunity to send it to you. I have consulted 
Mr. White. He advises not to write yet. He is going to New 
York in a few weeks and will go and see them. It strikes me 
that it is altogether the best way. You know that one cannot 
write what they would say. I am quite encouraged it will all 
come out right yet. Write a line when you can and let me know 
what you think of it. I am very lonely now Julia is gone, but 
I think it will not be very long before I shall see you both. 

The middle of May brought two letters in one which must 
have created considerable excitement in the boy's mind. 

"Dear James : 

Father and Mr. Hitchcock have just purchased a farm and 
are going to commence operations at once. Father wishes you to 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 151 

pack up and come down without delay. We shall all of us be 
very happy to see you once more, I can assure you. I suppose 
you are almost six feet high by this time. The farm is about four 
miles from here, beautifully situated and we are all delighted 
with it. Father has lately enlarged his library and has a very 
valuable and useful set of books, with which to employ leisure 
hours. This will afford you an opportunity to improve your 
mind and spend your leisure time usefully until some change 
takes place in the business world. Father and Mr. Hitchcock have 
concluded that farming is the most profitable business nowadays. 
We will expect you soon, I suppose you can by this time travel 
alone. At all events I think you will be able to find us out. You 
have not quite forgotten the old quarters. I must wish you 
goodnight and pleasant dreams. Give my love to your mother 
and ask her to write by you. 

Your affectionate sister, 

Mary Hitchcock." 
"Dear James : 

You will take the advice of your mother upon the above sub- 
ject and govern yourself accordingly. I think that you can make 
yourself useful to me and finish your education at same time. 
My library is much increased since you left us. The Rev. Mr. 
White called on us on Saturday and I was much pleased to hear 
you were not idle, although type-setting does not amount to much. 
You can find some merchant coming on to New York who will 
take charge of you and on your arrival there — you know where 
the ferry to Staten Island is at White Hall, it runs almost every 
hour. The boats are the "Samson" and the "'Staten Islander." 
I have no more to add but the sooner you come the better. 

Yours in haste, 
Geo. Howard." 

An entry in his journal, dated June 1, 1843 — a year later, 
proves that James obeyed this summons : "One year ago to-day 
and where was I ? I set my foot for the first time in three years 
in New York. And ere the sun had reached his meridian I was 

152 Smith College Studies in History 

at my old home. I little thought then that before the earth had 
performed another circle around the sun, I should be here." 

We know not what circumstances led to the boy's return to 
Northampton. It is possible that the farm venture on Staten 
Island was not a success, or perhaps a more favorable arrange- 
ment in the Gazette Printing Office was made for him. Certain 
it is that early in 1843, when just 17 years old, he became an 
apprentice under Mr. William A. Hawley, who was then owner 
and editor of the Hampshire Gazette. The following letter, dated 
December 11, 1843, shows that this change met with the approval 
of his Uncle Howard, and illustrates as well the rhetorical style 
of advice, upon which the youth of that day were fed. 

"Dear James : 

Your letter of September 4th in answer to Mr. Roff's was 
the first intimation I had of the proposal, which would place you 
in a subordinate situation in a grocery store in New York. 

I was much gratified with your prudent and becoming answer 
to his probably well-intended ofifer, and highly pleased that your 
mind was fixed on business and a trade. The one you have chosen 
affords an opportunity for improvement of the mental faculties — 
is an honourable occupation — opens the way for advancement in 
the higher pursuits of learning, and brings you to a more 
immediate knowledge of your fellow-men. 

Now is the time of life when you should press forward to the 
attainment of those beautiful branches of science which fit a man 
for the most dignified station on earth, and point him to a glorified 
state of existence in the world to come. I repeat that I am 
pleased with your determination, and hope your good sense will 
continue to be as well expressed in all the movements appertaining 
to a sojourn amidst the evanescent scenes of life. 

I feel a strong solicitude that you should prosper and by your 
industry rise to distinction — the more obstacles you shall over- 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 153 

come in the attainment of your object, the greater will be the 
victory and the richer your reward. 

A strict accordance with the wishes and will of your em- 
ployer — a rigid course of industry and application — and an un- 
swerving determination of adherence to honest and honourable 
principles will, (with God's blessing) enable you to reach the 
summit of human distinction. 

I have taken private quarters in my native town where I 
am happily removed from the turmoil and confusion which al- 
ways infect the atmosphere of New York and Staten Island. I 
shall remain here till spring and perhaps longer, and if possible 
will visit you at Northampton. 

When you see or communicate with your mother say to her 
that she still occupies a lively place in my remembrance, and 
present to her my affectionate regards. 

Write me at Windsor, Connecticut, and advise of all matters 
which may be of consequence. 

With the feelings of a father, I am 

Yours etc., 

Geo. Howard." 

A kind fate has preserved for us the journal of the young 
apprentice, covering the period from May 12 to July 14, 1843, and 
giving us our first glimpse into his daily life. 

To the country boy Northampton with its 4CXX) or more 
inhabitants, its business life, its county court, its beautiful old 
residences and its refining and gracious social life, was an educa- 
tion in itself ; and many references in this journal to the events 
of the day and to the buildings and various activities which he 
observed in his daily walks, attest the interest with which they 
inspired him. But this journal has for us by far the greatest 
significance in the fact that the young man paints for us all un- 
consciously a portrait of himself. At the beginning of every 
entry he reports his hour of rising, which varies from a quarter 
past four to five. Twice he accuses himself of lying abed until 

154 Smith College Stuidies in History 

half past five. He roomed in the office building and had his meals 
at Mr. Hawley's, which were none too appetizing or nourishing 
according to present day ideas of the needs of a growing boy. 
He always refused codfish in later years, excusing himself by 
saying: "I served my apprenticeship on codfish." The breakfast 
hour was probably six o'clock or soon after, for regular work 
in the office began at seven. 

Journal for 1843 

"Friday, May 12. Rose at half past four. Worked till break- 
fast time. After breakfast went to laying on sheets at the press. 
Commenced at 7 o'clock and got oflf at 11. Distributed till 3 
o'clock and then started for home. Left N. at about half past 3. 
Called at Easthampton for L. H. E. but found him at home. 
Walked on slowly, saw some snow on the road. Walked on snow 
the 12th of May, a thing I never did before. Arrived at home 
about 10 minutes past 6. Found Julia at home and very glad to 
see me. Slept at mother's that night. 

Saturday, May 13. Rose at 5. Sat down to breakfast with 
mother, Julia and Aunt Ann, there was one still absent, one 
other sister — the table seemed lonely, but hope whispered con- 
solation in the ear. The time may not be far distant when we 
three shall sit together. After breakfast piled up some wood for 
mother. After dinner went to Mr. Edwards', found them glad 
to see me. Went out in the lot with Mr. E. and talked upon 
many things. In the evening went into Catherine's room and 
remained there till 9 o'clock. She appears much better and 
seemed glad to see me. After 9 I had a long talk with Henry 
relative to reading and study. Retired at 10. 

Sunday, May 14. Rose at 6. Left Mr. E's at a quarter of 
9. Went to church. Sermon by Rev. Mr. White." It seemed 
good to get home again and sit in the accustomed slip, surrounded 
by familiar faces and listening to my favorite preacher. At noon 
the funeral of Mrs. Joel Lyman was attended from the church. 
The Sabbath-school scholars walked in the procession. I could 
not keep the thought from my mind, as I saw the long train of 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 155 

friends and relatives that followed the deceased to her final rest- 
ing-place : These will stand round the grave, shed one tear as 
the cold clods fall with a deadening sound upon the coffin lid 
and turn to leave the place, but ere they leave the burial ground 
forget the dead, and as they mingle with the world even forget 
that there is such a thing as death. This afternoon there were 
two children baptized, Mr. Saul Birt's and Mr. Sam Lyman's. 

After church went to mother's and staid till about half past 
6, when F. H. Axtell came with Mr, E's colt and carried me 
as far as Easthampton. Here I left him intending to walk the 
rest of the way. But before I had gone a mile I was overtaken 
by a man who invited me to ride. I of course accepted it and 
rode as far as the middle of South Street, from thence I walked 
in. Got the key of Mr. Hawley and retired at 9. 

Monday, May 14. About half past 3 Lewis Graves came in 
and told me Aunt Ann wanted to see me. I immediately went 
and found her at Stodard and Lathrop's. I did several errands 
for her and came back to the office. After supper I went to 
the court-house and heard the pleas of Mr. Bates & Forbs on 
the case of Sheldon L Strong. Verdict in favor of Strong, 
damages $4. It was rather a mean business there were a great 
many people from S(outhampton) in. 

Tuesday, May 15. Geo. Wilson at work here. To-day Mr. 
Hawley accused me of not spacing my matter well. In the even- 
ing studied Latin some and heard Burnell read from an old 
manuscript he found up stairs. Someones travels, perhaps Mr. 

Wednesday, May 17. Went to distributing till 10 o'clock, 
when I attended the ordination of Rev. Mr. Rogers as pastor 
over the Edwards Church. Exercises as follows : 

Rev. Theodore J. Clark, scribe ; Rev. Mr. Clapp, moderator ; 
Rev. Mr. Clapp, invocation and reading the scriptures ; Rev. Dr. 
Hawes, installation sermon; Rev. Dr. Osgood, installing prayer; 
Rev. John Todd, charge to the pastor; Rev. Willey, [probably 
Wiley] right hand of fellowship; Rev. Mr. Bement concluding 

156 Smith College Studies in History 

prayer. The services passed off well. The church was pretty 
well filled. The music was good. The exercises commenced at 
half past 10 and closed at 15m past one. Dined with Mr. and Mrs. 
H. and Mr. and Mrs. Stowe and Mrs. Colton. Went to work at 
2 o'clock on the paper. In the evening wrote composition part 
of the evening. Retired at 10. There was an alarm of fire about 
half past 9. It proved to be over on the hills and I did not go. 

Thursday, May 18. In the evening went up stairs and wrote 
a composition and then down below and saw John French try 
to mesmerize Wm. Jones. He tried some time but did not suc- 
ceed. We had a fire this morning in the office, rather cold 
weather for May." 

Little did he think that the above mentioned composition writ- 
ten on the 18th of May, would fall into the hands of his niece 
almost 80 years later. The theme, "The Offering of Isaac" is 
one, which, like many others from the Bible, was a great favorite 
in those days, no doubt because it afforded opportunity for prac- 
tice in the description of a dramatic scene. It was this constant 
and untiring practice in writing which developed the facility of 
expression, so characteristic of his mature work. 

"Friday, May 19. Read Latin till breakfast time. Went to 
work on the press. Commenced at 7 and got off about 20m 
of 12. We stopped three times to correct errors. One time in 
pulling off the plattin we pulled out the staples in the top of the 
blanket, these were soon mended. In the afternoon I distributed. 
After supper I went to Mr. Whitmarsh's place where they are 
moving his cocoonery down a steep bank almost perpendicular. 
They take the building in detached parts, it must be a work of 
great expense." 

Thus casually does the boy refer to one of the boldest and 
most alluring enterprises, namely the culture of silk worms and 
the manufacture and weaving of silk, that ever fired the imagi- 
nation of business men of this region. Samuel Whitmarsh, the 
promoter of the scheme, was a man of great enthusiasm and 
absolute confidence in the success of his project, and he had the 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 157 

ability to enlist the cooperation of other men of affairs, not only 
in this locality, but all over New England and even in other 
parts of the country. Mulberry trees scattered here and there in 
this section, are most of them, witnesses to the eagerness with 
which their propagation was undertaken at that time, and many 
of them remnants of large orchards then planted. The amount 
of money involved in the enterprise was for the time huge, and 
great was the disaster when the bubble burst. 

Returning to the journal entry for May 19, we read : "From 
there we went to Mr. Reed's house. They have got that propped 
up and are busy rebuilding the foundations. Returned to the 
office and read Blair's Letures on Rhetoric. Have been trymg 
to think of some method of dividing my time so that I can carry 
on my studies and reading too. Writing my journal and study- 
ing Latin till breakfast time, rising at 4 and ^ o'clock. Read- 
ing at noon and some reading and study at night. Don't know 
how well I shall be able to carry out this plan. 

Sunday, May 21. Went to church at the Edwards. Mr. 
Rogers preached his first discourse after installation, it was upon 
the duties of the ministry — very appropriate. In the afternoon 
I attended at the same place. Mr. Rogers is a very smart man. 
I remember one sentence, or rather this is the substance not the 
exact words. 'Quench the light of Christianity and Ignorance 
with her attendant handmaids, Superstition and Crime would 
howl her funeral ode.' This sentence has lost its beauty by not 
having the connexion, but it is still good in itself. 

Monday, May 22. Rose at half past 4. Studied Latin till 
breakfast. Worked on the paper all day. In the evening read 
Blair's Lectures. Retired at 10. 

Tuesday, May 23. In the evening I made a curtain and fixed 
it to my window. To-day I received a letter and a book from 
Julia. Did an errand at noon for Aunt Ann. Sent out a bundle 
to mother. Read some in Blair's Lectures. 

Wednesday, May 24. Mr. Hawley and wife went to Amherst 
last night and got home to-day about 2 o'clock. After tea I 

158 Smith College Studies in History 

went with S. D. Smith to take a walk. First we went to see a 
large barn now building. It is the largest in town. From there 
we went through Hawley Street to the Episcopal church which 
is a neat little edifice. It is extremely small but it is done off 
in very good style. Then we went to the burying ground. Here 
the dead have been buried for centuries. The tombstones are 
thick. Some are bronzed by the hand of time and some have 
just been erected. And many rest there without even a simple 
stone to tell that they once lived. Here is the tombstone of 
David Brainard, that eminent missionary to the Indians. But 
man has helped more to demolish than time. Persons going 
there must needs have some memorial of that distinguished man 
and they have carried off pieces of his tombstone. Here also 
is the simple stone of Col. Seth Pomeroy who died in the Revo- 
lution, and by his side lies his wife. From thence we returned 
home through Market St. 

Thursday. Just as I had finished my supper to-night Mr. 
Hawley spoke to me and told me that there was to be a meet- 
ing of the Parish at the house of Mr. Rogers and he would 
like to have me go. Got there about half past 8. Were shown 
into a room where we left our hats. And then for an intro- 
duction to Mr. R. At first, I had an introduction to Dr. \\'alker, 
but while he was introducing Burnell and Jewett. Mr. Hawley 
came to me and offered me his arm. I was introduced first 
to an old lady who I suppose was his mother, next to Mrs. 
Rogers and finally to Mr. R. After this I escaped from the 
room some how or other, and stood in the hall behind the 
door some of the time, a stranger in a strange place. After 
a time they brought round some cake. It was passed to me half 
a dozen times at least, till I got sick of the sight of it at last. 
About half past 9 they sung a hymn and Mr. R. made some 
remarks and concluded by a prayer. The people then began to 
disperse. I staid and heard some songs by Miss Wells, Delano 
and Mr. Reed. They were beautiful. Then went home and to 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 159 

bed. Retired about a quarter of 10. Saw Austin Edwards to- 
day, he came into the office. 

Friday, May 26. Broke the pitcher this morning. When I 
came down I took up the pitcher to get some water to clean my 
teeth and it sHpped out of my hand and broke in pieces. I 
immediately sent for another for which I paid 25 cents. This 
noon I saw Aretas Bridgman of Westhampton. He seemed very 
glad to see me. Read in the evening some of the time and pasted 
scrap-book some of the time. 

Saturday, May 27. In the afternoon went to work on a job, 
Mr. Reed's concert bills. I set up the body and Burnell the 
head. It was the best concert bill that has been set up. Toward 
night we took down the stove and pipe and carried them up 
stairs. We also moved the imposing stone a little. In the even- 
ing washed up. Stephen slept with me. In the night and toward 
morning Mr. Hawley's youngest child, Joseph, had a fit. The 
last time they sent for the Dr. 

Sunday, May 28. Rose at half past five. Went to the Ed- 
wards church. Rev. Mr. Rogers preached a discourse on the 
gospel as the great leveler of all things. A fine discourse. In 
the afternoon I was so sleepy I did not hear much. In the even- 
ing went to the meeting at the vestry. It was pretty well filled. 
Retired about half past 8. 

Monday, May 29. Swept out the office. In the evening read 
some in Blair's Lectures, and then went to work upon a job — 
some verses to Julia by W. B. Jones. Stephen set up the body 
and I the border. Burnell said it was a scientific job. 

Tuesday, May 30. W. B. Jones feels very bad about those 
verses, he says that by some means they have got around among 
the girls. He was told of one that had been seen by the girls. 
It is rather a bad business, when we set it up we had no inten- 
tion of showing it to any individual out of the office. However 
it is done and cannot be helped. In the evening I took a walk 
with Stephen Smith over to South St. to see the building they 
were moving. While coming back we saw a boy learning to 

160 Smith College Studies in History 

drum. Dwight Norton came in to-day and said that he had 
been out to Mr. Edwards' and said they were going to try a dif- 
ferent course of medicine [for Catharine]. I hope it may prove 
successful. Yesterday I saw Mr. L. F, Clark and Miss Hannah 
White, they brought me a bundle and note from home. 

Wednesday, May 31. Rose at 5. Went to distributing till 
about 8, when I went to work at the press with Stephen putting 
on wrappers for the Paper-Mill. Worked at the press till 11. 
In the afternoon I distributed for a little while and then went 
to setting. Stephen and George went to putting on sheets till 
George pulled the blanket and then he sent me to the press. 
Worked there till 5 and then washed six rollers. In the even- 
ing I read some in Paul Jones, intending to read it through, but 
shall give up that idea. 

Thursday, June 1. One year ago to-day and where was I? 
I set my foot for the first time in three years in New York. And 
ere the sun had reached his meridian I was at my old home. I 
little thought then that before the earth had performed another 
circle round the sun I should be here. How little we know what 
a day may bring forth. And is it not best as it is? There is 
not one man in this whole inhabited globe but will answer 'Yes'." 
If man could see through the 'dim distant future.' suppose you 
he would long wish to live here? This is one of the coldest 
days we have had lately. Last night Burnell and myself bought 
a thermometer which stood at 39 this morning. Went to work 
on the paper, got up about 4 and then set out an old case till 
5, loafed the rest of the afternoon. There was one piece of 
poetry of about half a column in which not one error was 
found. I heard Mr. Hawley say to Mr. Thayer that that was 
pretty clean proof. (It was some of my setting.) The weather 
was so cold that we wanted the stove back again, we kept a fire 
in the fireplace. The thermometer ranged about 50 on the aver- 
age during the day. Burnell went up to Hatfield to-night and 
got home about 11. I set up some border for a job. Albert 
Ingram and John Panton came in and sat by the fire most all 
the evening. 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 161 

Friday, June 2. Thermometer stood at 39. Still very cold. 
Pasted in my scrap-book till breakfast. After supper I read in 
Blair and wrote some. 

Saturday, June 3. Thermometer at 48. In the evening read 
Milton. About half past 9 I heard a noise of someone talking 
very loud and swearing, at first thought it was down in Eustas' 
shop, but finally it turned out to be up stairs. I immediately went 
up to see what the matter was. But no sooner had I got up there 
than Capt. Hutchins seized me by my arm and jerked me around, 
asking me if I made all the noise. At first I knew not what he 
meant but Burnell went up to him and told him that it was 
not me. He then swore that it was me and said that one of us 
had got to die, (he having a gun in his hand all the time). Then 
Burnell went up to Mr. Hawley's and I talked with him. Finally 
I told him that I had not been here but two months, upon which 
he begged my pardon and I went down stairs. Fie followed me 
down, first having put up his gun which he said was loaded with 
six buck shot. On finding no one here he went back. In a few 
moments Stephen came in and then Burnell. In the course of 
half an hour Capt. Hutchins came down again and began to go 
at Stephen. Thi's was about 10. We talked till about 11 and 
then the old man went up stairs quite sobered down. I never 
saw a person more infuriated than he was when he first came 
into Burnell's room. Brandishing his gun, threatening our lives 
and accusing him of lying. Mr. Hawley told Burnell that he 
would speak with Judge Lyman to-day and have him turned 
out. The next day we learned that Mr. H. came from the house 
up here about 11 and found us all in bed. Retired at 11, but 
before we had been in bed 15m Burnell thought he heard the 
cry of fire, most probably the effect of a disordered imagination, 
as we listened some time and heard nothing more. 

Sunday, June 4. Rose at 5. Went to the house and read till 
church time. Went to the Edwards all day. Mr. Rogers preached 
from these words : 'Offer your bodies unto God a living sacri- 
fice, which is your reasonable service.' He preached from the 

162 Smith College Studies in History 

same text both morning and afternoon, but I was so sleepy that 
I did not hear much. I expect it is owing to my business being 
confined so much over the case, my senses become benumbed. 
Went to the monthly concert in the evening. Air. R. preached 
an excellent sermon in favor of home missionaries and foreign. 
Retired at 9. 

Monday, June 5. Thermometer at 60, cloudy and the appear- 
ance of rain. Scjuire Wells went twice to see Capt. Hutchins 
but he was not in. 

Tuesday. Rose at 15m of 5. Went to breakfast at 5 and 
went to work immediately, got the paper up about 10 but kept 
it open for the election returns. Got to work on the press at 
noon, got off about 5. In the evening went up to Knight's and 
got measured for a pair of shoes, for which I am to pay $2.25. 
Read some, Ab. Ingram came in. I saw to-day Mr. Osmyn 
Baker and the Hon. Lewis Strong. 

Wednesday, June 7. Finished setting out my case and papered 
the bottom, then went to distributing. At noon Mr. Washburn 
came in with two bills which we were obliged to work immedi- 
ately, I set one, the Horse Bill, and Stephen Smith the other, 
I rolled for both while S. S. and G. M. J. worked off some 
wrappers. In the evening read Milton. Retired at 10. 

Thursday, June 8. In the evening went to a temperance lec- 
ture in the Town Hall from an old bald-headed sea-captain, who 
proved to be nothing but a bore. Staid there about 15m and 
came home. Received a letter from Julia to-night. 

Friday, June 9. Burnell went home about half past 4. 
Stephen Wilson and myself went in bathing about 5 o'clock, 
found the water quite cold. In the evening wrote to Julia. Night 
before last we were awakened about 2 o'clock by some music. 
It was the Belchertown brass band, they played several tunes 
most splendidly. Retired at half past 9. The ther. stood at 82. 

Saturday, June 10. W. H, Day came in, he came up the 
night before. We were all glad to see him. Stephen went home 
at noon. Got the paper up about half past 2. Loafed the rest 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 163 

of the day. About 5 went in bathing with Bill Day, John Wells 
and G. M. J. Read in the evening, 

Sunday, June 11. Rose at 5. Went to the Edwards in the 
forenoon. Mr. R. preached from Revelations : "He that is un- 
just let him be unjust still." In the afternoon he preached from 
Proverbs. I do not recollect the words. In the evening I at- 
tended a meeting at the vestry. Mr. R. spoke in favor of Sabbath- 
schools. After meeting I wrote till 10 and then retired. 

Monday, June 12. In the evening went with Burnell to the 
great barn and walked around by Hawley Street, coming home 
I met Bill Day and a lot more fellows who were going to try 
their fireworks. Went with them down behind the school-house 
and got my shoes all mud, the fireworks went off pretty well. 

Tuesday, May 13. Yesterday I went with B. up in Drs. 
Barret Thompson & Co.'s oflice where Dwight Norton gave a 
shock from a small galvanic battery. The shock is entirely dif- 
ferent from electricity. Sent a bundle to Julia by Mr. Judd, the 
Post Rider. In the evening read from Milton. 

Wednesday, June 14. Rose at half past 4. Ther. at 57. 
About 10 Knight came in with my shoes, but I did not like them 
and carried them back. I then went down to Sackets and got 
measured for a pair which are to cost $3.50. Rather extravagant 
Burnell says. I must be more careful in the future, if these 
are not done on Friday at noon I shall not take them. In the 
evening I went out with Freeman Smith, we walked up by the 
Mansion House and back to the Temperance Hall. Here we 
found about half a dozen reformed drunkards, devising means 
to celebrate the 4th of July. In the first place they took a vote 
to celebrate the 4th, and then someone moved to appoint a com- 
mittee of 7 to arrange the matter. They then nominated till they 
got seven and then they wanted one more, but not satisfied with 
this they put on two more and then adjourned. The president 
then attempted to tell a story, but he acted as if he had been 
corned. Upon the whole it was a meeting that seemed as if it 
was composed of reformed inebriates. I then went down to the 

164 Smith College Studies in History 

American Hotel and listened about half an hour to a person 
playing on a violin. I then went home and read till 10 and went 
to bed. 

Thursday, June 15. Rose at 5, went to work on the paper 
got up about 4. Then went with Burnell, Stephen and Bill Day 
to Burnell's pond, went in swimming then went into the saw- 
mill, and from there to the grist-mill. The grist-mill is the largest 
one of the kind I ever saw. It is a new building, the old one 
was burnt down last year. Went all over it through the ma- 
chinery. From there we went into the sash factory, then to 
Bullen's blacksmith shop, then we tried to go across the river 
but found the bridge gone and we could not go across. We then 
came home. After supper I went to work on a job which kept 
me till 10. I had a little of Burnell's help. Rec'd a letter from 
mother stating that Aunt Marsh and Martha were now in New 
York and expecting to come on here in a few weeks, perhaps next 
week. O how I long to see my sister. It is now six years since 
I have seen her. It is true I know little about her but still she 
is my sister. 

Friday, June 16, 1843. Rose at 5 went to work on the press. 
Hayden turned, Edwards had gone off somewhere and got Hay- 
den in his place. Bought me a pair of half boots for v/hich I 
paid $vS.50. Rather extravagant, but I got Knight to make a 
pair and they were not fit to hoe corn in. In the evening I read 
and worked on my job some. 

Saturday, June 17. Heard from Norton to-day that a man 
had been found drowned in the Connecticut, he fell in somewhere 
about Turners Falls and had been in 3 or 4 days. Mrs. Havvley 
came home this afternoon from Boston. 

Sunday, June 18. Went to the Edwards Church all day. 
Mr. Rogers preached in the forenoon from the 2d of Peter 2d. 
Mr. Wiley exchanged with him in the afternoon but I do not 
recollect the text. Went to the third service at half past 6. Mr. 
Oliver Warner's son preached from Luke but I do not remember 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 165 

the chapter. In the evening after meeting I wrote a letter to 
mother to send out by Dwight Norton to-morrow morning. 

Monday, June 19. Mr. Hawley camje honije about half 
past 3. Worked on the paper all day. After supper Burnell 
and myself went to take a walk, in the first place we went 
up to Mr. Breck's but saw no one. We then went down 
to the canal and seeing a fire at some distance on the bank, we 
went to it and found some people fishing. We then walked 
down Summer St. to King St. and passed the place where the 
house of President Edwards formerly stood. There are at pres- 
ent two noble elms, the largest I ever saw. Ages they have 
stood and flourished, generation after generation of man has 
passed away and the brave old trees have stood in all their 
height and majesty. The tired Indian has rested his weary limbs 
here when the sun beat down fiercely ; when returning heated 
from the chase, his beautiful daughter fanned his pallid brow 
and the cool breeze invigorated him. Then we came up to the 
reading-room where we stayed about an hour. 

Tuesday, June 20. After supper went with Bill Day over 
to Charles Smith's to look at his summer coats, thought of taking 
one but have not made up my mind. Rec'd a letter from mother 
by Brown. Think some of going home Saturday. I do not 
know as Mr. Hawley will let me go and stay the greatest part 
of a week but I hope so. In the evening read some in Temper- 
ance Tales, No. 21. 

Wednesday, June 21. Went to distributing till about half 
past 10, then went to setting the first part of Webster's speech 
in new minion, set the rest of the day. After supper went to 
Charles Smith's and bought me a coat for $2.50 rather on Bur- 
nell's suggestion than at my own. Went in a swimming with 
Kingsley, Thomas, Stephen and Towar, a young man from 
Greenfield whom I never saw before. We went down behind 
the jail and some of them called out to the inmates, but it was 
rather mean business so that we did not stay long. After swim- 
ming we went up to the large barn there building and from there 
came home. The ther. stood at 88. 

166 Smith College Studies in History 

Thursday, June 22. Went to setting on the paper, got up 
about 4. Joy and myself then carried the roller box down cellar. 
Stephen, Thomas and myself went up to Burnell's pond to 
swim about half past 5. Stephen and Tom swam across, but 
I only went about half way and back again. After supper 
Thomas and I read Mr. Webster's speech at laying the corner 
stone of Bunker Hill Monument, 18 years ago. Retired about 
10. Ther. about 89. 

Friday, June 23. Saw Horace Edwards down under the 
horse shed, he halloed to me and I asked him to come up, but 
as he did not I supposed he did not intend to. so at half past 
5 I went up to the river to go in swimming with Burnell, 
Stephen and Bill. I was afterwards sorry that I did not stay 
for Horace came in a few minutes after we had gone, and we 
did not go into the water ; when we had got almost there we 
saw a canal-boat coming and nothing would suit Burnell and Bill 
but that we must get onto the boat and sail back. So on we 
got and sailed back to the storehouse. We went into the school- 
house and saw the laboratory and library and a small case of 
minerals. Then we went home to supper. After supper I came 
up to the office and read till 9 and then retired. Ther. stood at 
90. I was very sorry that I did not see Horace. 

Saturday, June 24. Henry Edwards came in about half past 
four, I was very glad to see him. After supper he came again 
and v/e walked as far as the Mansion House and then went into 
the Edwards church where they held a singing-school, finding 
that the school had not commenced we went to Barrett Thomp- 
son & Co.'s office and found Dwight. While there Frank Searle 
came in and we had a meeting of Southampton folks. Pres- 
ently Frank went off and we went again in a few minutes to 
the church to the singing-school where we remained till it was out. 

Sunday, June 25. Went to the Edwards all day. Mr. Rogers 
preached in the forenoon and Mr. Hopkins in the afternoon. At 
half past 6 there was a third meeting, designed for the young. 
Mr. R. preached from the text: "Remember now thy creator in 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 167 

the days of thy youth." He gave some account of the manner 
in which he spent his early Hfe, viz. he was a reckless and way- 
ward youth, visited the theatre and ball-room, etc. His con- 
version too he dated at the supposed death-bed of his mother. 
His sermon was very affecting and well calculated to take hold 
on the young. After meeting I went with Henry and Frank to 
take a walk, we went down Pleasant Street, through Hawley to 
Mr. Kirkland's, where we met with two more from Southamp- 
ton, Miss Clark and Miss Sheldon, we expected Dwight to make 
out the number but he did not come. It was a very pleasant 
meeting for us all. I left about half past 9. Henry is going to 
Southampton to-morrow at 7. He promised to call before he 
left town. 

Monday, June 26. Mr. Graves came and brought a book and 
letter from Julia. Besides a present from Cousin Esther which 
I intend to get framed. After supper I came to the office and 
read. The new type that Mr. Hawley bought in Boston came 
to-day. Burnell and I opened it and looked them all over. 

Tuesday, June 27. Mr, L. Edwards called in to see me this 
afternoon, he staid a few moments, talked with Mr. H. and then 
went home. Went in swimming with Burnell and Cook in 
Burnell's pond. Read some and retired at 10. Ther. at 90. 

Wednesday, June 28. A load of paper came this noon. I 
helped Joy bring up some of it. Went to setting in the after- 
noon. In the evening I came up to the office and read and sung 
and carried on some. 

Friday, June 30. Rose at 5 and went in a swimming with 
Bill Day and Tom Burnell in the Lickingwater. In the evening 
Burnell printed some cards for Julia for me. I set up some border 
around the order of exercises for the Celebration on the Fourth 
of July. Burnell printed some and the rest I left for Bill Day 
in the morning. 

Saturday, July 1. Rose at 5. Went to swim in the river 
with Freeman Smith. Went to work on the paper, worked till 5. 
Then having 9 columns up we quit work. After supper I went 

168 Smith College Studies in History 

in swimming with Burnell in the Mill Pond. There were quite 
a number of boys in with us. After we came out we walked 
round by his uncle's, where we stopped and got a drink of water. 
We came down and saw both engines try their power on the old 
church to see which could throw the highest. The deluge rather 
carried off the palm. 

Sunday, July 2. Rose at half past 5. Went to church at the 
Edwards all day. Mr. Rogers preached in the forenoon and ad- 
ministered the Sacrament in the afternoon. Attended the third 
meeting at half past 6. To-day the Sabbath-school was omitted 
on account of the excessive heat of the weather, the thermometer 
standing at 96. In the afternoon we had a tremendous shower 
and it rained most all night. In the evening Kingsley Burnell, 
William Strong, Burnell and myself went up in our room and 
read loud from the Cause and Cure of Infidelity. Burnell read 
most of the time but I read several chapters. 

Monday, July 3. Went to work on the paper. Went to 
press about 2 o'clock, got off at 6. In the evening read and fixed 
things for going home. Retired about 10. 

Tuesday, July 4. Rose at half past 3, got ready and went 
home. When I started it was quite dark. I arrived at home 
about half past 5. It was the stillest morning for the Fourth 
of July I recollect of having seen, hardly a gun. Saw Martha 
and Aunt Marsh. Martha resembles Julia very much, she is pale 
and not very well. Aunt Marsh looks the same as ever. She 
brought a letter to me from Sarah and a lot of papers from the 
rest. Julia and Mr. Miller came over about 11, and staid till 2. 
It really seemed good to see us all together again after a separa- 
tion of 6 years. In the afternoon I went up to Mr. Edwards'. 
Staid to supper. Mr. Shad Clark and wife there. Left there 
about 7. Stopped at Col's, had a chat with Horace and then 
went down to Mr. Chapman's to accompany home Mother, Aunt 
Marsh, Aunt Ann and Martha. Slept at Mr. Graves'. 

Wednesday, July 5. Rose at 6. Went over home to break- 
fast. Aunt Marsh went over to Springfield with Mr. Brown. 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 169 

Started about 8 o'clock. I staid at home till about four in the 
afternoon, and then went up to Mr. Edwards'. Found the Doc- 
tors there, they had been giving Catherine some galvanic shocks. 
Yesterday for the first time since last Thanksgiving, she came 
out to the dinner table with help. Had a talk with Mr. E. about 
matters and things in general. Had for supper a good dish of 
strawberries and milk. 

Thursday, July 6. Rose at 6. Started for home about 7. 
Brought up some wood and chips for mother. Had an oppor- 
tunity to ride with Mr. Graves. I improved the chance and got 
in about 9. Worked on the paper all day. 

Friday, July 7. Distributed in the afternoon till about half 
past 5, then fixed my picture in a frame. In the evening I wrote 
a letter to Sarah, which I intend to finish tomorrow. Had the 
nose-bleed twice in the afternoon. 

Saturday, July 8. Went to work on the paper. Got all up 
about 5. Then copied my letter to Sarah, and wrote one home. 

Sunday. Went to the Edwards Church all day. Mr. Rogers 
preached all day. In the evening heard a Missionary preach at 
the town hall. He told of the number of conversions in the 
Sandwich Islands, it was 60,000, while a million and a half had 
been made heathen at home ; rather poor encouragement for the 
missionary. After meeting came up to the office and finding the 
lock out of order, we could not get in, so Burnell went up to his 
Uncle Breck's to stay and I went down and slept with Stephen. 

Monday, July 10. Rose at 5, did not come to the office till 
after breakfast and then found Joy had opened the door and got 
in somehow. Stephen and I took off the lock and found it was 
broken, and by fixing we made it so that it would work and put it 
on, I don't think it will last long. In the evening read till half 
past 9 and then retired. 

Tuesday, July 11. Rose at half past 5. (Rather late). Joy 
sick, had to be devil. Got to work on the press at 10, got off at 
4. In the evening I read some and studied problems some. 

Wednesday, July 12. In the afternoon went to setting on Dr. 

170 Smith College Studies in History 

Segur's address. About 4, Thomas, Bill Stephens and myself 
went up to Union Hall to see the compound solar Microscope. It 
has a great magnifying power so that a pin with some of the 
crumbs of cheese upon it would seem a crowbar with animals as 
large as small dogs running around upon it. He showed a fly's 
leg, it seemed larger than a man's. Flies and ants &c he showed. 
It was worth 12^/2 cts. The box containing the lenses was placed 
in a small opening in a window, the rest of the room being dark- 
ened, and the images are thrown on the opposite wall. While 
there the room was full of school-children who made so much 
noise that we could scarcely hear what the operator said. We 
have the privilege of going again free. After supper we went in 
swimming. Spent the rest of the evening trying to decipher a 
cryptograph but did not succeed. 

Thursday, July 13. Did not get the correcting done till half 
past 6. In the evening commenced a letter to Julia. Went to 
the town hall at 8 to the meeting of the citizens to devise means 
for the relief of the sufferers at Fall River by fire. It seems to 
have been an awful calamity. A million and a half of property 
destroyed and about 200 families houseless and homeless wan- 
derers without the necessaries of life and with barely food enough. 
A collection is to be taken up a week from next Sunday. A man 
from there gave an account of the fire. It seems that the prin- 
cipal part of the town is swept away by the devouring element. 

Friday, July 14. Went with Step. Smith to Union Hall to 
see the microscope, but there being no sun, we saw nothing. In 
the evening I went to the town hall to hear a lecture on Palestine, 
Syria and Egypt, illustrated by splendid paintings shown by the 
Hydro-Oxygen light, and magnified to about 17 feet upon the prin- 
ciple of the compound Solar Microscope. Some of the pictures 
were splendid, especially the pilgrims bathing in the Jordan. 

Saturday, July 15. Set at the rate of two sticks full an hour 
and got up a short column of Burgeois before dinner. 

Sunday, July 16. At the third service Mr. Rogers preached 
from the words: "Take heed how ye hear." He told several 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 171 

classes of hearers and some of them shot pretty straight. In the 
evening I commenced a compo entitled : "The last Plague of 

Monday, July 17. After supper I wrote part of a letter to 
Julia and then went to the town hall to a second lecture on Syria, 
Palestine and Egypt. First he presented a map of those countries, 
then a map of Palestine, then a view of the present appearance 
of Palestine from an eminence near Mt. Tabor, It seemed as if 
covered with bushes and rough and uneven. They have no roads 
except those made by their beasts of burden who commonly go in 
single file. He showed a picture of the Temple of Memnon in 
Thebes and two statues, one of the vocal Memnon which always 
uttered a noise at the time of the rising sun, but for some cause 
it has ceased to murmur. A recent traveller found a small metallic 
plate under one of the arms, which emitted a fine tone when 
struck. He showed the Lord's Supper. The picture was drawn 
to represent the time when Christ told his disciples : "This night 
one of you shall betray me." They were all in commotion, some 
bending eagerly toward him, some in earnest conversation. But 
there was one — the black fiend-like visage was turned upon Christ, 
and it seemed as though I could almost hear that diabolical voice 
as he asked : "Is it I ?" The last painting he showed was the 
ascension of Christ. He had his picture so arranged that the 
figure of Christ ascended and a cloud came and covered him, 
then appeared angels and then the cloud covered all. The light 
went out very frequently and we were left entirely in the dark. 

Wednesday, July 19. After supper finished my letter to Julia 
and found that I had lost a fourpence. Went to a juvenile con- 
cert under the direction of E. H. Swain. It was a first rate thing. 
A contribution was taken up and I hope he was well rewarded 
as he was one of the sufiferers by the fire at Fall River. One 
piece, a song by a miss, was first rate, it was called for again 
after it had been sung once. The singers' seats in the Old Church 
were filled with the children. It lasted about an hour. 

Thursday, July 20. After supper I went with Bill Day to 

172 Smith College Studies in History 

Deacon Hibbin's to get some cherries. We went all over the 
garden, got a few raspberries and found a few sour cherries. 
Then we found one tree that had a few black ones on it. We 
stood on the ground and reached a limb when two women came 
in and we thought one of them was crazy. Bill was standing on 
a small ladder or steps. The woman came along looking as cross 
as a meat axe, and said: 'T want those steps, and let me have 
that limb too." We got down and she got up. We then went up 
into the tree. We then went down across the aqueduct and I 
went to get John Panton to cut my hair. 

Sunday, July 23. In the afternoon we had an Agent of the 
A. B. C. F. M. soliciting aid. He said that if all the heathen in- 
habitants of the earth, 600,000,000, were brought together in one 
compact mass, they would cover a spot one mile wide and 100 
long. All these pass away once in 30 years and not a vestige re- 
mains, and these heathen too &c &c. 

Tuesday, July 25. Mr. Hawley went to New York to-day, 
don't know w^hen to expect him back. Rec'd a bundle by the 
Amherst Post Rider to-day. I do not know where it is from, 
it is for mother. Yesterday Mr. Hawley said his four boys were 
not worth four cyphers. In the evening we had a serenade by a 
band of four persons that came up with the reformed drunkards. 
About half past 11 were awakened by the same band perambu- 
lating the streets. 

Wednesday, July 26. In the evening went to a performance 
called the Reformed Drunkards. It consists of a band of young 
fellows and one female, who go around the country exhibiting 
the different stages of the drunkard's character. It consisted of 
10 scenes. In the first place a man came out below the stage, 
and told the audience the object of the exhibition &c. Then came 
the performance. First was the departure of boon companions 
and pledging each other in the wine cup and carousing. Then the 
parting of the brother and sister, and so on. I cannot recollect 
the rest of the scenes, but we saw the moderate drinker, heard 
the pleadings of his wife and saw them rejected. Then he passed 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 173 

on from stage to stage. The sheriff came and seized his property, 
his wife was taken to the Alms House. Then the jail, the pardon 
and reform, all depicted in a most natural way. There were 
several other characters, among them one Tom, an old drunkard, 
he was quite facetious. But the pleadings of the wife and children 
were most affecting. They were enough to draw tears from many 
a one and I presume they did from some. That girl was the most 
lovely girl I ever saw. As she clasped her hands in prayer, and 
two young girls came and bent over her, it was quite affecting. 
They were accompanied by a band of four musicians who played 
extremely well. They played as the curtain fell while they were 
shifting the scenes. This drama was claimed by one of the per- 
formers as his own writing, it was very well written and the 
scenery some of his first attempts at painting, all executed very 
well. It was well worth the ninepence. It was first started in 
Meriden N. H. at the instance of some of their friends. I can 
see nothing immoral in their drama. I think it may do much 
good. The house was full. They have been well received at 
other places and come well recommended. 

Thursday, July 27. In the afternoon we had a tussle with 
Joy. Such swearing I never heard. Stephen and Bill Day put 
him out of the door. When Burnell came he turned him out, but 
Joy begged and pled so hard that Burnell let him back. 

Friday, July 28. The boys received some "All Sorts" to-day 
from Fall River. In one we found a letter from Joy. I wrote 
an answer to Joy's letter which I showed to Burnell, he told me 
to send it by all means. 

Saturday, July 29. Copied my letter to Fall River. After 
breakfast shov/ed it to Bill Day, who wrote something to the 
editor under the head of private, and sent the letter. 

Monday, July 31. Rose at 3. Studied Latin Grammar for 
an hour and a half. In the evening went to hear a Mormon 
preacher in the town hall. After he had finished he called upon 
any person present to ask him questions. Dr. Graham and Dr. 
Allen got up and wound him up, finally he went off amid the 

174 Smith College Studies in History 

hissings of the rowdies who thronged about the door. He was 
very ilhterate but seemed to be candid. 

Wednesday, August 2. Went home about half past 2 with 
Mr. Edwin Kingsley. Staid at mother's till about dark, then 
went up to Mr. Edwards'. Staid there that night. 

Thursday, August 3. Rose at 4. Got the horse ready, and 
started for South Hadley about 15 minutes past 7. Arrived 
there at a quarter before 8. Went to the Seminary and staid 
through the exercises,^ The hall was crowded but I managed 
to get a seat some of the time. The recitations were pretty good 
generally but I could not hear all. The compositions were first 
rate. One piece of poetry by ?il. E. G. v/as excellent. After 
the compositions were finished they sang several tunes accom- 
panied by the pianoforte, and very good singing it was too. 
From the Seminary we adjourned to the meeting house, but not 
near all who were present could get in, I for one was obliged 
to remain outside or stand in the door, but preferring the former, 
I retired to the tavern. The address by the Rev. Dr. Beecher 
was lengthy, and the whole of the exercises including the giving 
of diplomas took nearly three hours. The company then ad- 
journed to the Seminary and took dinner. I went to the tavern 
and waited till they had had time to get through dinner, and 
then went with Horace Edwards to the Seminary and looked 
around. Everything is done on a large scale. They have a 
windlass to raise the wood up from the woodhouses to the upper 
stories. The washing apparatus is quite a curiosity, they have 
a great number of copper kettles set in brick, and a great quantity 
of pumps for water, and the tubs and lines are all numbered. I 
then went back into the Seminary and found Julia, she intro- 
duced me to Mr. Edwin Graves and Cousins Esther and Fanny 
Graves, and Mrs. Graves, all of Hatfield. I then got my horse 
and we started not far from six. Before I had got half a mile 
I found that the tire to one of my front wheels (for 1 had Mr. 
E.'s old wagon) was loose. I was very much afraid it would 

* This was the day of his Sister Julia's graduation. 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 175 

come off. It staid on however till I got across the river, when I 
stopped at a house and drove in some nails. It did not come off 
at all, those nails helped keep it in place. While coming home 
I got on the wrong road, but did not go far before I found out 
my mistake and retraced my steps. Arrived at home about 15m 
past 8. I immediately went up to Mr. Edwards' with the horse, 
before I had my supper. I do not know but they thought strange 
but I did not mean any harm. 

Friday, August 4. Rose at 6. Got breakfast and went down 
to Mother's to get ready for a start. Did not get away till half 
past 7. Arrived at Easthampton at half past 8. Went to Henry's 
room and knocked but rec'd no answer. I then started on, went 
into the tavern to get a drink, turned round to go out and met 
Henry in the door. He was in a kind of doze when I knocked, 
but supposing it to be some of the scholars, he paid no attention 
to it. But soon after I had gone he recollected that it might be 
me and started on and overtook me. We sat down and talked a 
few minutes and then I went on and he back to the schooj-room. 
I got back to N. about half past 10 instead of getting here before 
breakfast as I was expected to. I told Mr. H. how it was and 
he said it was well enough. I found that while I was away my 
communication from Fall River in the "All Sorts" had arrived 
and that Joy was as mad as he could be, and laid the blame of 
writing the letter on Burnell and Bill Day, so that I got out of 
that scrape. Joy swore that he would kill Burnell because he 
showed it. 

Saturday, August 5. This evening the Torrent Engine came 
out in their uniform. They looked splendid, red shirts and white 
pants with fireman caps &c. 

Sunday, August 6. Attended church twice at the Edwards 
and once at the Old Church. In the forenoon Mr. Beecher, son 
of the old Dr. preached, soliciting aid from the churches here 
for those at the west. At half past 7 I went to the Old Church 
expecting to hear Dr. Beecher but he did not arrive till just time 
to commence his discourse and his son opened it. He followed 

176 Smith College Studies in History 

with some remarks, the meeting was kept up till half past 9. The 
young man is the most noble looking person I ever saw, a fine 
large forehead with a bald spot on the top of his head. Both he 
and his father appear perfectly at home in the pulpit. 

Monday, August 7. Read all the evening in a book entitled : 
"An Hour's Talk between a Father and Son," Willy Strong, 
Kingsley, Step, Burnell and myself, we took turns in reading. 

Wednesday, August 9. We all went to setting with the pur- 
pose of getting the paper up to-day and going to commencement 
tomorrow. We succeeded finely and got up quicker than we 
generally do Thursdays. After supper Isaac Parsons came and I 
went in swimming with him at Burnell's Pond. After we came 
home I went with Burnell over to Mr. Clapp's in South Street 
to make arrangements about studying Latin, he advised me to 
take up Cicero. I am to recite once a week at present, Wednes- 
day night. I said nothing about terms but I shall next Wednes- 
day. Bill Day expects to go to Oberlin next week. 

Thursday, August 10. Rose at 5. Began to get ready to go 
to Amherst with Burnell and Willy Strong. Started at 15m past 
8, got over just as the procession entered the meeting house. 
The pews were all filled so that we were obliged to stand on a 
platform raised upon some of the back pews. But as some got 
tired and went out I at last found a place to sit on the back of 
one of the pews. The speaking was very good but I should judge 
not very extra, but I never attended an exhibition of the kind 
before. The salutatory address in Latin was very good, I could 
not carry the translation through but I could get some snatches 
of it. The rest of the pieces were very good but I could not now 
particularize. They had but one colloquy but that was fine and 
well acted. The exercises were too long, they would be long, of 
course. It made it rather tedious for those who were obliged to 
stand. After the exercises we went up to the colleges and went 
through the chapel. We saw the laboratory where there were a 
large number of chemical apparatus. Then into the cabinet, this 
is superior to any college of the kind in Mass. and has one of 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 177 

the greatest professors in that department at its head. We then 
went into the library, then upon the top of the cupola, but the 
weather being cloudy we could not see much. We then came 
down and on the steps I met L, H. E. with whom I went into 
another of the buildings, where they room. Then we went down 
to the hotel, and finally after a while we came home, got home at 
6. On going to the house we could not find anything but some 
gingerbread. Step, and I ate some of that and he left a fine 
mess on the table of crushed gingerbread. 

Friday, August 11. Joy was turned off yesterday, so that I 
am now youngest apprentice. Willy Strong and another fellow 
came in and I pulled myself up by my hands on a bar 14 times. 
Studied Latin in the evening. 

Saturday, August 12. Rose at 5. Did chores. Mr. Hawley 
came home in the afternoon. Studied Latin in the evening. 

Wednesday. I distributed a lot of pi left by Joy. In the 
evening I went over to Mr. Clapp's in South Street and recited 
my Grammar lesson. James Hibbin came about half past 8 and 
about 9 Kingsley Burnell. Burnell read after they went out in 
the American Mechanic till half past 10. 

Friday, August 18. About 4 o'clock Mr. Miller came into 
the office and told me that Julia and Martha were here. I went 
out to the tavern and found them there. Sat there with them 
nearly an hour. They then went home and I to my work. 

Monday, Aug. 21. Rose at 5. Went to work on the paper. 
Mr. H. not satisfied with our work, wants us to work faster. 
Says that one hand in Stowe's office sets as much as the whole 
of us. Willy and King came in and staid till 10, but they came 
down stairs and I had the room to myself to study in. 

Tuesday, August 29. Geo. Wilson came here to work. In 
the evening I went to Harvey Kirkland's to see Catherine and 
Mrs. E. Rec'd a letter from Peter Roff, offering me a situation 
as clerk in his store. 

Wednesday, August 30. About half past 10 Mr. Miller came 
in and said that Julia was at Warner's. I immediately went down 

178 Smith College Studies in History 

and showed her my letter from Peter Roff. She was on her way 
to Hatfield. Studied in evening. 

Thursday, August 31. Mariette E. and Dorcas Durant came 
in this afternoon and I showed them around. In the evening ate 
a watermelon and read. 

Friday, Sept. 1. \\'ent to press at 7. We run off the platin 
to correct and Step, tried to lift up the form after it had been 
unlocked (not thinking) and pied considerable. But we all went 
to work and in about an hour we were ready for operations. In 
the evening I recited to Mr. Clapp of South St. but my lesson 
was none of the best. 

Saturday, Sept. 2. In the afternoon I went home with Mr. 
Edwards. Went up to Mr. E. at about 8 and staid there that 

Sunday, Sept. 3. Went to church, sat in Aunt Rosy's pew^ 
Mr. White preached. Sacrament was administered in the after- 
noon and Lorine Frary assisted in the exercises. In the evening 
wrote to N. Y. concluding not to go. 

Monday, Sept. 4. Rose at half past 4. Started from home 
at half past 5, walked all the way, and got back here by 8 o'clock. 
Went to work on the paper. Worked on it all day. The weather 
was very warm. In the evening I studied Latin. 

Tuesday, Sept. 5. Wilson and I had a dispute about washing 
the rollers and neither of us would do it, so they were left and 
Burnell washed them about 11 that night. 

Thursday, Sept. 7. Henry E. and mother came in. Saw 
them at noon at Mr. K's. He came up here. In the evening 
went to Mr. Clapp's but did not recite. Had a scrape pulling 
sticks and knocking off hats in the evening with Wilson, Willy &c. 

Saturday, Sept. 9. Mr. E. and wife carried Catharine home, 
appeared to feel very bad, both in tears as I met them on my way 
to dinner. 

Monday, Sept. 11. We got the stove down this morning and 
built a fire. Saw Henry as I went to dinner, who told me that 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 179 

Catharine was dead. She died without a struggle about 7 o'clock 
Monday morning. He appeared to feel very bad. 

Tuesday, Sept. 12. In the evening attended a mnemonical 
lecture in the Town Hall. He remembered 50 names as they 
were read off to him, so that by giving him the name he would 
give you the number or vice versa. Put my name down to join 
his class, four lessons of two hours each for one dollar. 

Wednesday, Sept. 13. At 11 1/2 started for Southampton 
with Mr. Kirkland to attend Catharine's funeral, got out there at 
25m of one, got dinner at home and went up to Mr. E's. I went 
with the mourners, drove the third wagon with Mrs. Parsons. A 
sermon was preached by Mr. White. The scene after the services 
was very affecting, the family stood around the coffin taking the 
last look. It seemed as if they could not give her up. After the 
services Mr, E. wanted me to return to his house, but I had a 
chance to ride with Mr. Kirkland and improved it. In the even- 
ing attended the first lesson in mnemonics. We dwelt on the 
value of the letters principally. 

Thursday, Sept. 14. Rose at half past four. Did chores. In 
the evening attended a class of mnemonics or the art of memory, 
this evening we by the aid of symbols were enabled to remember 
40 words. 

Friday, Sept. .5. Our new boy came to-day, Robert Haugh- 
ton, a native of Ireland. In the evening attended another school 
of mnemonics. 

Saturday, Sept. 15. In the evening Step, and I had a lot of 
roast corn, with King and Willy to help eat it, and a muskmellon. 
Willy shaved me in the evening. 

Monday, Sept. 17. In the evening went to mnemonics. 

Tuesday, September 18. Mr. H. as cross as a bear all day. 
The band to the distributing rollers broke and Burnell went off 
to get it fixed, was gone so long that Mr. H. went after him in 
a terrible huff, but met him at the foot of the stairs. Henry E. 
went to Amherst. His father called to see me to-day. 

Thursday. Rose at 6. Went to setting, but four columns to 

180 Smith College Studies in History 

set up, got up and corrected before 5. We had the best proof I 
have seen. To Union Hall in the evening. 

Sunday. Attended church all day at the Edwards. Rev. Dr. 
Osgood from Springfield preached three times. His sermons 
were excellent. Before church time in the forenoon I copied 
some verses in reference to Catharine and wrote a note to Julia 
in reference to them. 

Thursday, Sept. 28. In the evening went over to Mr. Clapp's 
and found him getting better after having been sick. 

Through negligence I have not made any entry for a week. 
The summary is that I have attended some lectures on Oratory 
& Music by Prof. Bronson in the Town Hall. Commenced a job 
of printing some lines on the death of Catharine. Set up one 
night till 1 o'clock and another till 11 l)ut have not got it done yet. 

Tuesday, Oct. 10. Got off about 4. Mr. Edwards came in 
and brought me a few peaches which were very nice. I sent out 
a bundle by him. In the evening attended Mr. Bronson's Lec- 
ture and a grand one it was. Willy Strong cut my hair. 

Wednesday. Rose at 15m before 6. Distributed most all 
day. In the afternoon I tried to see how much long primer 1 
could set in an hour. I set 3 sticks full and 6 lines. In the 
evening Burnell worked my job for me. Mr. H. came in and 
said it was very pretty. Retired at 11." 

This chapter out of the daily life of a printer's apprentice, por- 
traying incidentally scenes and activities of Northampton and its 
surroundings which are for us almost ancient history, and ending, 
as it does, so abruptly, always awakens my desire for more and 
has occasioned many a fruitless search through the old Trumbull 
house, to see if perchance some forgotten nook or cranny might 
not at length yield up other records of the succeeding years. 
However, these pages suffice to give us a vivid picture of the 
earnest young man, who was in reality only a boy. Somewhat 
shy and reserved and unused to social functions, he nevertheless 
loved companionship, for he never spent his recreation hours 
alone; and we have reason to believe that he himself with his 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 181 

eager interest in everything about him and his keen sense of 
humor, was an agreeable companion. Like his father he had a 
strong family affection, which is expressed in his letters as well as 
his journal. His love of music is here plainly revealed. I never 
saw anyone who enjoyed so keenly a thing about which he knew 
so little. He used to say with his whimsical smile : *"I know 
two tunes, one is Yankee Doodle and the other isn't." Yet I 
have seen him sit enthralled by really fine music, for which the 
average man would have no appreciation. 

Every journal entry records the hours devoted to the different 
kinds of work comprising his daily tasks, though these references 
have for the most part been omitted to avoid reptition. His days 
were spent in almost unremitting toil. No theaters, movies nor 
club meetings varied the monotony; there were no weekly half 
holidays and few diversions of any kind. With a persistance 
which nowadays seems incredible in a 17-year-old boy, he ad- 
hered to the plan for combining work, reading and study, of which 
we read in the journal entry for May 19. 

Letters to His Family 

This close application to work and study proved too great 
a strain for one who had never had robust health. On the 6th 
of May, 1846, his mother went to Baltimore to visit her cousin 
and remained away all summer. To this fortunate circumstance 
we owe several letters, written to her by her children, which she 
preserved. From these we learn that her son's health was seri- 
ously impaired. Previous to this visit grandmother had come to 
Northampton to make her home with her elder daughter, Julia, 
who was then living with her husband and little boy on South 

The first of these letters was written from Southampton, 
whither James had gone for a rest and was dated May 18, 1846. 

"Dear Mother: 

Julia and Martha have written thus much of the sheet and the 
remainder is left for me. This letter should have been sent be- 

182 Smith College Studies in History 

fore, but the pleasure of hearing from all your children will com- 
pensate in some measure for the delay. I came to S. last Wed- 
nesday with Mr. Edwards when he came back from carrying 
Henry to Amherst ; and shall probably remain till next Saturday. 
I cannot say that my health has improved very rapidly, but I feel 
better than when I came out. Most of my time is spent in the 
open air. The first day after I came out I assisted Mr. E. in 
planting potatoes. The next I spent in the woods with my gun. 
The morning after, Worcester and myself started at about 3 
o'clock for Mt. Tom to see the sun rise. We arrived at the 
summit just in time to see it come above the horizon, but the 
weather was cloudy and foggy and we could see nothing at all. 
We thereupon cut our names in the rock and started for home, 
where we arrived at noon. We had no expectation of seeing the 
sun rise, as the weather was cloudy when we started, but Wor- 
cester had never been there and thought he should not have 
another opportunity, so we went. In the afternoon I went up to 
Mr. E's and wrote a letter to Kingsley Burnell. Yesterday I 
heard two good sermons from Mr. White and attended third 
service in the vestry at 5 1/2 o'clock. So much for a journal. 
I am now at Mr. Edward's writing but shall go down town after 
dinner to see Mr. Chapman's people off. The weather looks 
somewhat rainy and if it should prove so they will postpone 
moving for the present. I have spent a number of nights at Mr. 
C's. Saw Mrs. Sheldon, Mrs. Clark and Mary the other day, 
they all enquired particularly for you and seemed to think it a 
good thing for you to go to Baltimore. On Tuesday last Henri- 
etta and Lovisa Sheldon were married. The wedding took place 
at 2 o'clock in the afternoon, the party then rode to Col. Edwards' 
and took some refreshment. From thence they went up to Mr. 
Strong Clarke's and finished oflf. They had the largest wedding 
party that has been in town for years. Taylor Clapp was also 
married last week. So we had three brides out yesterday. Joseph 
and Austin and their brides were dressed alike and made a very 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 183 

pretty appearance. Mr. Samuel Pomeroy came out with his bride 
a few Sunday's ago, and last week when Ingram and myself were 
here Stephen Searle and wife made their first appearance. What 
a place Southampton is for Marriages ! 

I left Julia all alone. Nancy [her sister-in-law] went home 
on Monday. Her father came over on business and she thought 
she had better go home with him. I am inclined to think that 
Julia will be somewhat lonesome, but Henry will be some comfort. 
You will find your letter considerably soiled but it could not very 
well be helped. I brought it from Northampton in my pocket 
and brought it up to Mr. E's in the same place. But I suppose 
you will not care for that so long as you can read it. You cannot 
imagine how glad I was to receive your paper, I did not get it 
till Monday night. I have sent you a Gazette and a Courier. 
Julia will send you the next Gazette. My vest is done and it sets 
beautifully. I paid 25 cts for getting it finished. Ingram gave 
it to one of the girls in the shop to do instead of doing it himself. 
You have probably heard of the fire at South Hadley Canal. You 
might have seen the ruins as you passed on your way to New 
York, but you had other things to think of at that time. I hope 
you will write soon and give a description of your journey, your 
place of residence, etc. You must excuse the wandering manner 
in which this letter is written, as I had but little space to tell a 
long story, or a number of stories, in. Mrs. Chapman and Ed- 
wards wish to be remembered. 

Yours in haste, 


"Northampton, June 1, 1846. 
Dearest Mother : 

Your letter was duly received and you cannot imagine how 
glad we were to get it. It seems but yesterday since Julia and 
myself saw you starting from the depot, but you have been absent 
a number of weeks. My visit to Southampton I enjoyed much. 
I remained nearly two weeks with Mr. Edwards. On Saturday 

184 Smith College Studies in History 

afternoon he brought me as far as Southampton, from whence I 
intended to take the mail carriage, which leaves there in the after- 
noon, but I found that their price was 25 cents. So thinking it 
would be cheaper to walk I started on foot and arrived at North- 
ampton about half past three. I found Julia rather lonely but 
glad to see me. I took tea with her and then went to the office, 
where I found the hands all glad to see me. While at South- 
ampton, after I had written you, Corinth, Susan [Edwards] and 
myself went one afternoon to the west part of the town. Susan 
went to her Uncle Strong Clark's, while Corinth and myself went 
to Mr. Theodore Parsons'. We spent the afternoon very pleas- 
antly and arrived home about nine o'clock in the evening. My 
health is improving, while at S. I gained just a half pound. Al- 
though this does not amount to much yet it shows that there is 
some improvement. Since I came back I feel considerably better, 
am able to do more work, indeed I work most of the time and do 
not feel as tired at night as I did before I went out of town. 

Mr. Hawley commenced the publication of' a daily paper on 
Wednesday last. Quite an undertaking for Northampton. His 
intention of publishing was not made known till the first number 
appeared. People were taken by surprise. The enterprise will, 
I think, ultimately succeed well. Everybody is pleased with it, 
and the papers sell well. This makes more work for us in the 
office, but not so much as you would at first suppose. Mr. H. has 
engaged Thomas Burnell. He came in town last Monday and 
will remain permanently I suppose. You cannot imagine how 
pleased I was to see him. He rooms with me at the office, so 
you see I shall not have to stay alone this summer. We are going 
to have our room fitted up in style. Mr. Hawley has purchased 
us some new chairs. Mrs. H. will get us some curtains, and 
when we get everything arranged we shall have as neat a room 
as need be. I am glad to hear that your health is improving also. 
You seem to be very pleasantly situated, and I hope you will not 
give yourself any uneasiness about Julia and the rest of us. You 
must throw all anxiety and care oif your mind and enjoy your- 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 185 

self as much as possible. That is the way I did when at South- 
ampton, and to that was probably owing the good effect of the 

Martha I have not heard from since she went to Westfield 
but hope to soon. She seemed to feel rather bad at leaving 
Southampton. She will probably be homesick for a few weeks. 
She said she had made up her mind to be so before she went. I 
have not written to New York yet, but intend to in the course of 
a few weeks. I shall write to Mrs. Hitchcock. When you v/rite 
again please state what your intention- is about going there. It 
will be but a few weeks now before we shall see you again. 
How I long for the time to come. Yet I would not abate a par- 
ticle of your pleasure by wishing you back while you are enjoy- 
ing yourself there. If the weather is no pleasanter with you 
than it is here, you cannot have much comfort. We have had 
but one pleasant day for a week. It has been cloudy all the time 
and rained some. Henry Guy has got so that he cries when I am 
over there and attempt to come away. He will take his mother's 
wood and scatter it all over the floor. Do all sorts of mischief, 
and the more mischievous he is the louder he will laugh and 
crow. I must apologize for the brevity of my letter, for we are 
all three of us intending to write again, and must of necessity 
be short. I write on this letter of Aunt Marsh's to save postage. 
Write as soon as convenient. 

From your aff. son, 
Jas. R. Trumbull." 

"Northampton. July 13. 1846. 
Dearest Mother : 

After waiting till I am inclined to believe you regard us as 
having almost forgotten you, we have at length commenced an 
answer to your last letter. I say we, because Julia and Nancy 
are intending to write also. We have been waiting till after the 
Fourth, and this is the first leisure time I have found since then. 
In the first place I will give you an account of our Fourth of 
July excursion. On Friday, July 3, Julia, Nancy, Henrie and 

186 Smith College Studies in History 

myself left in the stage for Southampton. We arrived there in 
time to visit the Fair, which, for reasons best known to the ladies 
of Southampton, was held on the afternoon of the day preceding 
the Fourth. The fair resembled that of last year in arrangement 
and quality. The only thing lacking was visitors, and as we did 
not get there till late in the afternoon, most of them had probably 
left. By the way, the first visit we made was to the old premises, 
and they looked as natural as you please. In the evening I went 
to Mr. Edwards' and spent the night. I shall confine myself to 
my own movements as much as possible, to avoid repetition of 
the same thing in the other letters. In the morning I took Mr. 
E's horse and drove down to Mr. Sheldon's and took Julia, Nancy 
and the baby to ride. We rode around the square and left Julia 
and Henrie at Mr. Sheldon Bascom's, while Nancy and myself 
continued our ride. In the afternoon, after seeing Martha, as 
she went through town to a ride, we all went to Mr. Edwards'. 
I will leave an account of the visit with Martha for Julia to 
describe. We saw Worcester too, he took dinner at Mr. Bascom's, 
but Nancy may tell you about that. At Mr. Edwards' we found 
Henry and a Mr. Waters, an Amherst student. Julia, Hen. and 
myself spent the night there. Nancy can inform you best about 
her ride down the hill with Henry Edwards and her feelings after 
she got to Mr, Sheldon's. Sunday I attended church all day, 
preaching by Mr. Butler, agent of the Am. Bible Society. Mr. 
White is unwell and has been for a number of weeks — was get- 
ting better when we left. In the evening I went to Mr. E's again, 
took his horse in the morning and we all went to Westfield. 
Found Mat. and Mrs. Sheldon in the washtub, or rather by the 
side of it. We told them Saturday that we should not visit them, 
but succeeding in getting a horse, contrary to expectations, we 
came upon them unexpectedly. Here we spent a pleasant day, 
visited the cemetery and Miss Baldwin's school, and arrived in 
Southampton about 8 o'clock in the evening. Julia and Nancy 
spent the night at Mr. Gains Lyman's, while I went to Mr. Ed- 
wards' again. In the morning we all came back to Northampton 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 187 

with Mr. Lyman. On the whole I don't know when I have spent 
a Fourth of July more pleasantly, than I did this year. 

I have written to New York and received an answer. Mrs. 
Hitchcock says that nothing would afford them more pleasure 
than seeing you. And if you will write when you leave Balti- 
more, by what route, when and where you land in New York, as 
near as you can, Mr. Hitchcock will either meet you at the boat 
himself or deputize someone who will see you safe to the Island. 
I think perhaps you had better write to Mrs. Hitchcock yourself, 
just before you start, as you can make your calculations nearer 
than if you should write to me and wait till I should write to New 
York. You must be particular and observe the directions con- 
tained in her letter. These you can ascertain from Mr. Williams. 
Mrs. Hitchcock says the only thing will be, they will quarrel 
who shall have you. Mrs. H. has been unwell, suffering from 
nervous headache and weak eyes. She has a son just three 
months old, Mrs. Harcourt (Julia) has a daughter three weeks 
younger. She wishes me to come on there and escort you home, 
a thing I should like very much to do. You spoke of leaving 
your baggage at the landing in New York, in case you should not 
meet anyone at the boat. I should not think it safe to do so, you 
had better speak to Mr. Williams about it. You might perhaps 
through the influence of Mr. W. be placed in a cab in the city by 
the conductor of the cars or captain of the steamboat and be taken 
immediately to the Staten Island ferry, and after you land on the 
Island, anyone would direct you to Mr. Hitchcock's, and your 
baggage would be safe at the steamboat landing till sent for. 
But I have something of more importance to myself to com- 
municate to you. It is this : 

Dr. Thompson has advised me to go to Saratoga Springs. He 
thinks the change of life and effect of the water would have a 
beneficial effect on me. I do not know as I am any worse now 
than when you left. On the whole I think I feel some better, but 
I feel as though the principal difficulty had not been reached, and 
that is in the assimilative and digestive functions. As long as I 

188 Smith College Studies in History 

am confined to the office, medicine will not have as good an effect, 
or to use the words of Dr. T., it does not act kindly upon me. 
He says I do not need a great deal of medicine. He will not 
assure me of being cured, but speaks confidently of obtaining 
benefit. He thinks I had better start soon and remain there 
about a month. I must go, he says, during the warm weather. 
It will cost about $30. I shall draw from my fund in the Savings 
Bank at Hartford $50, go to Saratoga, stay a month, go to New 
York and come home feeling pretty well, I hope. That is if it 
meets with your approbation. My money cannot be appropriated 
to a better use. HI should recover, I can easily earn more, but 
if not I do not want the money. I had rather go this summer 
than wait till next, when it may be too late, and if not too late I 
shall be obliged to lose time then which I shall not now. I have 
not spoken to Mr. Hawley about it yet, but I will repeat what I 
said to one of the hands, that if I make up my mind to go, I 
shall go if he should tell me that I need not come back again. I 
would like to have you write immediately on the receipt of this, 
as I would like to get away by a fortnight from to-day, and I 
must write to Uncle Lewis for the money. The reason I take so 
much is, because I must get a few things before I go, and I wish 
to have sufficient. I do not wish to have you give yourself any 
uneasiness about me, for I do not feel as much pain in my breast 
as I formerly did. 

From your aff. son, . 
Jas. R. Trumbull. 

P. S. I would not have you fail of going to New York for any- 
thing. You must not be in any hurry to get home, Julia is doing 
well, and Nancy has promised to stay till you come back. I will 
write to Maj. Howard immediately. J." 

The following letter, written to his Sister Julia from Saratoga 
under date of July 25, shows that he started on this journey just 
one week after tlie preceding letter was written, waiting neither 
for an answer from his mother nor for the money to be sent from 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 189 

"Dearest Sis : 

At last I have reached the far famed watering-place, and like 
others who have only one coat to their back, am playing gentle- 
man to my heart's content. We arrived here on Thursday after- 
noon at six o'clock. Long enough coming, don't you think so? 
Well, I suppose you want to know all about our journey, but to 
write all about it would take more time, paper and patience than 
I can well spare just at present. We left Northampton Monday 
morn, at 25 minutes past 8, took dinner at Greenfield, where we 
remained a number of hours and finally reached Brattleboro at 
about six in the evening. Here we put up at the hotel of a Mr. 
Shaw, formerly of Northampton and brother of the man who 
kept the American Hotel when it was burned. Brattleboro is 
situated on a steep bank of the Connecticut, which is so narrow 
here that it seems as though you could jump from one bank to 
another. The town is not so large as Northampton, but it has a 
much more lively appearance. There are now about 300 patients 
there under the treatment of the Hydropathic Dr. — some jaw- 
breaking Dutch name, which can neither be written nor spoken 
by anyone but a German. We passed, between Greenfield and 
Brattleboro, extensive slate quarries lining the road for miles, 
situated in the town of Guilford. All day we did not see a 
squirrel and only a few birds. Brattleboro, you are aware, is 
called the Gretna-Green of New England, and we some expected 
to be called upon to act as witnesses to some runaway match but 
fortunately escaped. I have nothing more of consequence to re- 
late concerning our first day's ride, so I will proceed to the second. 
We started about six in the morn, on our excursion across the 
Green Mountains, this part of which has been denominated the 
Switzerland of America. From the door of the hotel the ground 
commenced rising and we went up and down and down and up 
all day long. The ride was a magnificent one. At one time we 
wound around some mountain side, while far off stretched moun- 
tain above mountain, hill over hill all covered with a dense growth 
of wood clothed in its garment of green. At another time we 

190 Smith College Studies in History 

would follow along the track of a mountain torrent down it 
seemed into the very center of the mountain, while along its rocky 
pathway a little rivulet murmured, the only remnant of the once 
furious torrent. One of these streams in particular we followed 
many miles and when we lost the sound of its moving waters it 
seemed as though a friend had gone. Some of the way our road 
led through deep defiles in the mountain, and on either side from 
both sides of the road, rose the almost perpendicular mountain 
steep. Then again the gorge would widen and ? few acres of 
cultivated land and a neat farm-house would diversify the scene. 
Then we would toil over some precipitous height and then plunge 
into a deep ravine. Sometimes our road lay north, sometimes 
south, sometimes east and sometimes west. We dined at Wil- 
mington, spent an hour or two and then pushed on. About three 
o'clock we were overtaken by a shower, but we covered up well 
and did not get wet. But here we saw the most beautiful sight 
in the whole route, one which I never expect to witness again. 
After the shower we stopped at the top of a hill to fix our bag- 
gage, which was in danger of being wet by the rain that had fallen 
into the carriage. While engaged in this manner our attention 
was arrested by a most beautiful rainbow, formed in the hollow 
below us. It was perfect in all its parts and extended merely 
across the road, and not a hundred rods from us. Oh ! it was a 
beautiful sight. But I must hasten on. For the rest of the trip 
over the mountain I refer you to my journal, and even that is 
more imperfect than I wish it was. When we reached the bottom 
of the Mt. on the other side, we found it very stony, more so than 
I ever saw before or ever hope to see again, if I have got to ride 
over it. The stones are so thick that I should think the inhabit- 
ants would be obliged to sharpen the spears of grass, so that they 
can find their way between them. It is getting dark and I must 
postpone writing for the present. We spent the night in East 
Bennington. But I have forgotten to tell you, when half way 
across the Mt. I .saw a chip squirrel run into his hiding-place. 
The next morning it rained quite hard so we remained at the hotel 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 191 

till after dinner. While waiting, a gentleman came up who 
wanted to send his horse over to Troy, one that he hired there, 
and concluding to finish his journey by stage, wanted it sent back. 
So about two in the afternoon we started, one in each carriage. 
When about half way to Troy it commenced raining, but we 
bundled up and drove six miles in 35 minutes, and did not get 
much wet. We reached Troy about six o'clock. Stopped at Mr. 
S. F. Mather's, a sister of Mr. Reed. So I have seen Troy with- 
out cost. When I go to New York I shall take the boat at Albany. 
The next morn, we left Troy about 10 and arrived at Saratoga 
at six. We stopped at the Prospect Mansion first, but Mr, R. 
not thinking the rooms large enough for himself and wife, we 
drove to Montgomery Hall. Here Mr. R. engaged rooms and I 
went back to Prospect Mansion. I have a room on the second 
floor and board for $3.50 per week. In the morning (Friday) I 
went to the Congress Springs and drank six glasses before break- 
fast. Here I found Corinth and Mary and Mrs. White of 
Southampton, Julius White's wife. They board at Rev. Mr. 
Crawford's for $2.50 per week. The Southamptoners form quite 
a company and all board at this place. My journey of four days 
board and all cost $4.74, while if I had come by Rail Road, it 
would have cost $6. The girls came from Westfield for $4.50 
each and probably carried their dinner. I am perfectly satisfied 
with the cost of my tramp. The only thing that troubles me is 
not hearing anything from my money. I took but $20. from Mr. 
Hawley and if I do not get more I cannot stay but two weeks. It 
seems strange that Uncle Lewis has not sent some word. I told 
Mr. H. if he did not hear from it to write to me, and I have 
watched every mail but received nothing. I did not imagine that 
my leaving Northampton was of so much consequence. For I see 
the very day I started the Daily Gazette stopped. Have you 
heard from mother yet? If so, send me the letter. Is Nancy 
going to Ohio? I am anxious to hear from you. Did you go to 
South Hadley? How's Henrie and Mr. M.? remember me to 
him. I am most worried about my money. The only way I 

192 Smith College Studies in History 

can account for it is on the supposition that Uncle L. has left 
home and no one there is competent to transact the business. I 
cannot write to mother nor to New York till I ascertain whether I 
am going there are not. You wish to know how my health is I 
suppose. I have not been here long enough to see any great change. 
Have a first rate boarding place, not far from 20 boarders and 
among them a Mr. Alvord from South Hadley. I generally get 
up in the morn, about six, go to the spring, drink two glasses of 
water, walk around for sometime, take two more, walk again 
and drink two more. We breakfast at seven, dine at one and 
take tea at six. I sent you a paper last Friday. We should have 
been here a day earlier but for the rain. It was our intention to 
have come directly from East Bennington to Saratoga, but we 
could not do it in half a day and it would cost less to stay over 
night in Troy, so we went there. I have not told you half that I 
would like to about our ride, but have not room for more. I will 
give you a description of Saratoga in my next. I make it a point 
to call on the girls once a day and sometimes twice. Do write 
as soon as you receive this. We have had very unpleasant 
weather taken as a whole since I left home, and it seems as if I. 
had been gone a month. Love to Sister Nancy and Henrie Guy. 
Does Hen. miss Uncle James any? I do not think he does. H 
my departure affects everything as it does the daily paper. Woe 
to Northampton till I get back. Write soon and accept a kiss 
from Brother James. 

Sunday, July 26. We had a fire here last night about half 
past three. It burned an old barn. I did not go to it. I have 
served my time as fireman in Northampton, have no idea of trying 
again at Saratoga Springs. There is not as much company here 
as there generally is. How glad I shall be to see you again. 
Now I do not wish to have you imagine that I am homesick, for 
I am not in the least. There is plenty to be seen and plenty of 
amusement, but one wants more spare shillings and sixpences 
than I have got now. Have you had the blues yet? If you have 
time I wish you would write to Aunt Lewis about my money even 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 193 

if you put off writing to me. Once more I will say write soon. 
Don't feel lonely and bad but just think how soon I shall be back. 
Perhaps in a fortnight and maybe not in a month. And if I go 
to New York not even then. I expect Dr. Thompson here in a 
few days. Give Hen. a kiss and ask him where Uncle James is. 
I will write to Mat. when I hear from you." 

"Saratoga Springs, Aug. 10, 1846.* 
Dear Mother : 

Yesterday I received a letter from Mrs. Hitchcock, informing 
me of your arrival at Tompkinsville. I have been at the Springs 
three weeks to-day. My health is somewhat improved, but not so 
much as I had expected. I have gained some, was weighed about 
two weeks ago and had gained two pounds then. Do not know 
how much I weigh now. It was my intention to have written 
you immediately on my arrival here, making arrangements to 
meet you in New York, but not receiving my money from Uncle 
Lewis as soon as it was expected, I determined to wait until that 
came, so as to be sure of going. Before the money was received 
your letter came, saying that we had better not write to you while 
you remained in Baltimore, so I have taken the earliest oppor- 
tunity of being sure of addressing you. Yesterday's mail also 
brought a letter from Julia. She was well as usual. Nancy went 
home last Monday. Henrie Guy is as brisk as a bee. Says 
"Baltigore" to perfection. But he will not remember either his 
Grandmother or uncle, when they get home, I suppose. This 
Saratoga life is not just the thing for me. I am sick of it. I 
■shall leave town next week Thursday, one week from to-day; 
remain in Albany through the night ; and go down the river in the 
morning, so as to arrive on the Island in the last boat. How I 
long for the time to come when I shall see you. I little thought 
when you left of meeting you in New York. It was my intention 
when I left home to have staid in New York about a month, but 
I am afraid they will not care about keeping us both so long. 

* It is evident from the preceding letter and also from references in this one, 
that the latter should have been dated August 13, which fell upon a Thursday. 

194 Smith College Studies in History 

And now I wish to ask your advice about seeking, while there, 
for some other employment than printing. I feel as long as I re- 
main at work at the case, that I shall never get well. My time is 
almost out with Mr. Hawley, and if I do not follow the business 
after I am twenty-one, it will be of no use to stay with him any 
longer. I would like to have you advise with some of them on 
the Island about it and let me know when I see you. I should 
like above all things, and I believe it would do me as much good 
and more than anything else, a short voyage to sea. I suppose 
you would not give your consent, but I should not go as a sailor, 
I would like to be a clerk on board ship or something of that kind. 
But enough of this for the present. Nothing of this kind has 
ever been hinted to anyone yet. I would like you to speak with 
Mr. Hitchcock or Dr. Harcourt or Mr. Rofif, or some of them 
about it, if you think proper, 

I am boarding at a Methodist minister's. Rev. Mr. Crawford's, 
with Corinth Edwards and Mary Clarke. Mrs. Chas. Frary, Mrs. 
Julius White and a Mrs. Hitchcock from Southampton have been 
boarding here, but they left a few days since. We have had 
quite a Southampton company amongst us. In the first place I 
went and for two weeks boarded at Prospect Mansion for $3.50 
per week, but that being a great distance from the Iodine Spring 
(and the Dr. told me to drink of that water after I had been 
here for some time) I moved to Mr. Crawford's, where I pay but 
$3. It saves me one dollar, you see. Last week Dr. Jas. Thomp- 
son and wife, Mrs. Kirkland and Rev. Mr. Swift came out here. 
The Dr. and wife and Mrs. Kirkland left on Monday for New 
York. Mr. Swift is here now. Dr. T. gave me some directions 
while here and I feel some better than before. 

I suppose you do not know how I came out here. It was one 
of the pleasantest journeys I ever had. Mr. Jas. Reed of North- 
ampton, was coming with his own horse and carriage and offered 
to bring me provided I would pay half the expenses. We started 
from N. on Monday (three weeks ago last Monday), spent the 
first night in Brattleboro, the second in East Bennington, Vt. third 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 195 

in Troy, and reached Saratoga about six o'clock on the afternoon 
of the fourth. The second day's ride was most delightful. You 
see I had the benefit of a ride across the country, and it did not 
cost so much as it would to have come by Rail Road. Mr. Haw- 
ley did not make any objection to my coming. I only told him 
that it would be necessary for me to stay three or four weeks. I 
shall not go to work at printing again till / am well. That I de- 
cided upon when I left home. And if this does not cure me or 
place me in a situation to be cured, I must go onto a farm, if 
nothing else can be found for me to do. Time passes slowly 
enough with me. It seems as though I had been gone from home 
almost a year. And yet I am in no hurry to get back again. 
Nothing gives me more pleasure than to hear that your health is 
better. I do not see but Julia gets along pretty well, considering. 
Nancy has been there since a week before the Fourth of July. 
And Martha is there now. I was expecting to hear that she was 
lonesome enough after I left, but she does not show it in her 
letters. Mat. came there soon after I came away. You spoke 
in your letter about getting things for my tour. I only got some 
shirts and one vest. I have not had that black one on since I 
left home. Julia and Nancy made my shirts and fixed me ofif. 
But I will tell you all about it when I see you. 

This morning Mary Clarke and myself went to Saratoga Lake, 
about four miles from here in the omnibus. We started from 
home about nine and got back about half past one. We crossed 
the lake in a small steamboat. On the other side is a sulphur 
spring. The water is the clearest I ever saw but its taste is 
nauseating in the extreme. Day before yesterday a company of 
four from our boarding house made arrangements to go, but they 
went ofif and left us because they were full. We were determined 
to go, some of us at any rate. So Mary and myself started this 
morning, Corinth did not wish to go. We had a very pleasant 
time. The weather for most of the time since I came here has 
been very warm. It is so now, but it is not, of course, equal to 
what you have experienced in Baltimore. Corinth and Mary 

196 Smith College Studies ix History 

leave for home on Tuesday next. They will be obliged to stay 
in Albany over night. I have four or five letters to write to send 
by them before that time. I hope you will look al^out the city all 
you can and I am sure you will enjoy yourself much. The Major 
sent me an answer to my letter saying that he should be very glad 
to see you but should not leave home this summer. He would be 
glad to see you on your return home. Perhaps we had better 
stop in Windsor and go and see Uncle Ammi too. I am afraid 
he does not receive any papers since I left. Thomas Burnell is 
in the office yet. In fact, if it had not been for him, my journey 
would have cost me considerably more, or rat:her I would have 
been obliged to buy several things which he has lent me. 

Give my love to them all and accept much for yourself from 

Your aff. son, 


Several letters signed R. which appeared in the Hampshire 
Herald during the summer of 1846, describe graphically and with 
all the enthusiasm of youth, the drive from Brattleboro over the 
mountains to Saratoga, the trip from Saratoga to New York City, 
as far as Albany by a miserable railroad, and from there down 
the Hudson by boat. Two of these letters, dated from Staten 
Island, give us the assurance that he carried out his intention of 
visiting his old home, where he found his mother who was await- 
ing his escort home. 

He wrote twice also to Mr. Hawley at this time, giving his 
impressions of the city of New York, and these letters were each 
printed in the next following issue of the Gazette and signed 
J. R. T. An extract or two may be of interest, as showing the 
immense difference between the New York of 1846 and the 
present Metropolis. 

"Among the public buildings of the city the Custom House, 
Merchants' Exchange. City Hall and the Astor House rank first." 

"The fact that the district of nearly 30 acres, burnt about a 
year ago, is now, with the exception of a few houses entirely re- 
built, shows the enterprise and activity of its business men." 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 197 

"The object of greatest interest near the city at present is the 
encampment of the California Expedition on Governor's Island, 
comprising a thousand men under Col. Stevenson. They make a 
striking appearance in their uniforms of gray mixed cloth trim- 
med with red. There were also 2000 troops on the same island, 
whose destination was Mexico." 

It seems probable that his mother did consult the Staten Island 
friends in regard to her son's future, but what their advice was, 
we have no means of discovering. We only know that he re- 
turned to Northampton and finished the period of his apprentice- 
ship, which no doubt expired upon his twenty-first birthday in 
December of that year. 


These years of faithful application to daily tasks, to study and 
to reading, together with his constant practice in composition, had 
made him a valuable member of the office force, and before the 
end of his apprenticeship he had not only been made foreman of 
the printing office, but had been entrusted often with the over- 
sight of the editorial department during Mr. Hawley's frequent 
absences. It may well be believed that Mr. Hawley was glad to 
retain him as journeyman, and he remained in that capacity until 

What others thought of his ability as a writer in those early 
days, may be judged by a letter, written under date of Jan. 26, 
1847 by Samuel Bowles of Springfield and addressed to J. Eden, 
Esq., Northampton, Mass. 

*'Dear Sir : 

First among the published letters from Printers who were 
invited to attend the late Franklin anniversary at Rochester, I 
find one from James R. Trumbull, Northampton, covering a very 
able and capitally written article upon "The Press." I think if 
Mr. Trumbull (by the way I don't know the man) could write 
such articles as that, I should have heard of him before. No ! my 

198 Smith College Studies in History 

mind, at once, turns to you as the writer of that article — so just 
and eloquent in thought. 

I suppose you have the Rochester papers, containing these 
letters in reply to invitations. Just mark a coincidence in the 
commencement of James Harper's letter and mine — that both of 
us have worked with P. Canfield, the Chairman of the Committee. 

If you intend to publish in the Gazette (as I understand you 
have the editorial chair there now) any of these letters, or mine 
with them, please make several corrections — Say Editor of Re- 
publican instead of Gazette — spell my name Bowles, and in the 
sentiment at the close of the letter, say People's rights, instead of 
Printer's rights. Yours truly, 

Samuel Bowles." 

This Mr. Eden, about whom I have been able to learn nothing 
more and who was so far as I can ascertain never editor of the 
Gazette, very generously turned this letter over to the young 
author of the article in question, w^hich appeared on the front 
page of the Gazette in the issue of February 9, 1847. 

But the young man's health was still precarious, and in the fall 
of 1848 he was again forced to seek rest and recuperation in a 
trip which he describes in the following letter to his sister Martha, 
who was still living in Westfield. The Ireland, to which he re- 
fers, is Ireland Parish, a part of Holyoke, where his Sister Julia 
and her family were then living. 

"Northampton, Nov. 12, 1848. 
Dear Sis : 

My promise to write immediately on my return from New 
York, remains as yet unfulfilled. It has not been for want of in- 
clination on my part, I can assure you, that it has not been at- 
tended to before. Since my return from N. Y. I have been as 
busy as possible, hardly finding time to write up my other corre- 
spondence, which has been woefully behind. But now that it is 
all closed up, as a last tax in the way of letter-writing, I intend 
to trouble myself with at present, is this epistle to you. 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 199 

At New York I found things situated altogether different from 
what I anticipated. In consequence of the prevalence of the Yel- 
low Fever on Staten Island, Mr. Hitchcock and family had 
moved to the city. So I spent all of my time in the city. There 
were no vessels going out to sea that would return within the time 
I had fixed as the limit of my absence from home. As an only 
means, therefore, of accomplishing the object for which I left 
home, I took passage on board a Boston Packet for Boston, via 
Long Island Sound. We set sail from New York on Wednesday 
noon and arrived in Boston on Sunday morning. Our passage 
was fine. The captain said he had not experienced so smooth a 
passage during the season. So you see I did not obtain the benefit 
I anticipated. The weather was not rough enough to give scarce 
any motion to the boat. We had fine moonlight nights and warm 
sunshiny days. In fact the sun was so hot, that it burned my 
face to a blister. Off Cape Cod we had splendid weather, too 
good altogether. My stay in Boston was short. I left on Mon- 
day for Springfield in the first train. While in Boston I visited 
Bunker Hill Monument, but it being Sunday could not get into it, 
so I was obliged to remain content as one of the "outsiders." 
This was the only place of interest that I had even the pleasure of 
seeing the outside of. I arrived at home on Monday in the three 
o'clock train from Springfield, covered with dust, and more in- 
clined to take a warm bath than anything else. 

My health is not much benefitted by the journey, although I 
feel better now than when I went, but I am always better in 
cold than in warm weather. It is my intention to remain here 
through the winter, and in the spring if no better to take a trip 
through the western country and catch the fever and ague, curing 
one disease by contracting another. But at present I can de- 
termine on nothing. The result of the election, I am inclined to 
think, has had a good effect on my health. At all events Hurrah- 
ing for Taylor and Fillmore at the Whig Reading Room, as the 
returns were received, made me so hoarse that for a day or two 
it was impossible for me to speak much above a whisper. 

200 Smith College Studies in History 

The election of "Old Zack" by such an overwhelming majority 
has exceeded the expectations of the most sanguine. We all sup- 
posed it would be a close struggle and many doubted whether he 
could be elected at all when they saw the feeling of dissatisfaction 
which pervaded some parts of the North. But enough of politics. 
Having elected our candidate we are satisfied, and I for one am 
glad the contest is so near over. To-morrow will decide the cam- 
paign both in the presidential and state elections, and no one will 
rejoice more than myself at its close. Julia and Nancy were both 
here Cattle Show. I was down to Ireland two weeks ago to-day. 
They were as well as common. I think Mother looks better than 
she did. But I am somewhat afraid she will never be contented 
to live where she does now. Hen. is as mischievous as ever. 
While I was there he heard me say something about hurrahing 
for Taylor, and afterwards he would "hurrah for Taylor" every 
little while. This was the first time he had ever heard the word 
used, and then only in conversation not directed to him. He will 
make a good whig I rather think, if his father doesn't turn Van- 

Well Martha, how are you employing your time this winter? 
not, I hope, as a great many young ladies with whom I am 
acquainted, reading novels and works destructive rather than im- 
proving to the mind. Let the reading of your leisure hours tend 
to instruct while it pleases — to elevate and ennoble the thoughts 
and feelings. I wish you were here to attend the course of Insti- 
tute Lectures which are now about commencing, I hope you 
will write on receipt of this and tell all about what you are doing 
and what you propose to busy yourself about this winter. 

I have not been to Southampton to spend those few weeks as 
I intended some time ago. Sydenham Parsons and myself went 
out there and staid one night last week at Mr. Theodore Parsons'. 
We went for the purpose of hunting and a fine time we had of it 
too. The squirrels, to be sure, were not very plenty, but we 
managed to waste some powder and shot against fences and guide 
boards besides killing six squirrels. We wandered all over 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 201 

"Breakneck" and I thought that break-leg would be a much more 
appropriate appellation before we got through. 

Remember me to Mr, and Mrs. Chapman, Worcester and all 
the rest. I hope you will write soon. If I spend any time in 
Southampton, I shall endeavor to come to Westfield and make 
you a visit. 

From your aflf. Bro. 


Editor of the Amherst "Express'' 

With his health impaired and no encouraging prospect for the 
future, these must have been among the darkest days of his life, 
although he maintained a cheerful appearance and a brave heart. 
It is always darkest just before dawn, and this phenomenon of 
nature often finds illustration in human life. His health im- 
proved, by what means we know not, and in the spring of the 
next year, 1849, the reward of his devotion to duty and his per- 
sistent effort came to him in the opportunity to purchase and to 
become editor of the "Hampshire and Franklin Express," pub- 
lished in Amherst. How quickly the aspect of everything had 
changed ! His dreams had come true ! He was established in 
his chosen profession, in a position which he filled with success 
four years. 

In a little less than a year after the date of the last letter, on 
the 6th of November, 1849, he married Harriet Kingsley, one of 
the prettiest girls in Northampton. She was the daughter of 
Edwin Kingsley, whose house and blacksmith shop formerly stood 
on the site of the Academy of Music. The young couple made 
their new home in Amherst in one half the house on Amity 
Street, which belonged to Dr. and Mrs. Stratton, who themselves 
occupied the other half. With the doctor, who was a dentist, and 
his wife they formed a pleasant acquaintance, which lasted as 
long as they lived. 

Under Mr. Trumbull's management the paper prospered, and 
in May, 1852, its pages were enlarged from six to seven columns 

202 Smith College Studies in History 

and printed on entirely new type. A glance over its files for 
these four years carries one back to a time when other interests 
filled men's thoughts, to be sure, and other problems confronted 
them — a time, nevertheless, which was just as all-engrossing and 
perhaps just as important in the development of the country as 
the present. 

The fugitive slave law and the fate of fugitive slaves are 
frequently discussed in these pages — a reminder that a bloody 
conflict was impending. The campaign of Winfield Scott, the 
whig candidate for the presidency, with references to the meet- 
ings, speeches, banners, etc., and especially the admonitions to 
the voters, all have a familiar sound. Robberies and other crimes, 
and also accidents to life and limb, seem as frequent as to-day, 
till we remember that this paper was issued but once a week in- 
stead of daily. 

European news came only by the slow going ships, there was 
no Atlantic Cable. The question of bringing the telegraph into 
the town of Amherst, or at least as near as Northampton, was 
brought up in one of the papers with the encouraging suggestion, 
that only energy and initiative were needed to accomplish it. 

Kossuth's tour through the United States was continually re- 
ferred to and a full report given of his visit to Northampton on 
the 24th of April, 1852. 3000 persons were crowded into the 
First Church to hear him speak and $700, was raised for the cause 
of Hungarian Freedom. 

Jenny Lind's wonderful singing, her concert in the First 
Church, Northampton in 1851, her marriage in Boston, her three 
months' honeymoon on Round Hill, Northampton during the fol- 
lowing winter and spring, and numerous anecdotes of her gener- 
osity and her love for America, especially for Northampton, read 
like an entrancing story. 

In those days some rather surprising projects were entertained 
and discussed, among others the annexation of Cuba, and the 
transfer of the State House from Boston to some more centrally 
located town in the state. 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 203 

The editorials of the "Express" bear witness to the integrity 
and sound common sense of the editor, as well as his devotion to 
the whig party. In his farewell editorial, March 15, 1853, he 
says: "Believing the principles professed by the Whig Party 
best calculated to promote the permanent welfare of the country, 
they have ever found a prominent position in the paper. . . . 
Advocating always the distinctive principles of the Whig Party, 
it may, and undoubtedly has been his (the editor's) misfortune 
to utter sentiments in the excitement of a political campaign, 
which in calmer moments would have remained unwritten. If so, 
you must pardon something to inexperience and something to the 
heat of youthful passion." 

Editor of the Hampshire "Gazette'' 

On the 15th of March, 1853, Mr. Hawley sold the Hampshire 
Gazette to Stephen W. Hopkins, Sidney Bridgman and Henry 
Childs who were booksellers and stationers and therefore needed 
someone to edit their paper. Their choice fell upon the young 
man, whose management of the Amherst Express for four years 
had been, as J. G. Holland states in his "History of Western 
Massachusetts," so "ably sustained." J. R. Trumbull was an- 
nounced as editor and assumed his new duties at once. This 
position he maintained till January 1, 1858, when Thomas Hale 
of Windsor, Vermont, became half owner and editor. But Hale's 
connection with the paper was destined to be short-lived. Though, 
to quote from his own pen, "the business of the Gazette has not 
been so good at any time for the past five years as now," yet, 
"from considerations of a personal nature, and with a view to 
other business arrangements," he agreed to the transfer of the 
paper, and Mr. Trumbull bought the entire plant, assuming the 
control on the first of October. Mr. Trumbull then entered into 
partnership with Henry S. Gere, editor of the Northampton 
Courier, and in November of the same year the Hampshire 
Gazette and Northampton Courier were merged into one. For 
eighteen years, until Mr. Trumbull's retirement, the firm of Trum- 

204 Smith College Studies in History 

bull and Gere published the Gazette and Courier, and carried on a 
successful job printing establishment. 

When Mr. and Mrs. Trumbull moved from Amherst to 
Northampton, they first occupied a house on Green Street, from 
there they moved to Maple Street, then to the Prindle House, 
which stood where the park next to the Academy now is. The 
last home they rented was in the Mayer house on Elm Street, 
located on the lot now vacant between Chemistry Hall and the 
Tenney House. While living here Mr. Trumbull built the resi- 
dence at the corner of Park and Prospect Streets, completing it in 
1869 and there they spent the remainder of their days. 

It was during these years that Mr. and Mrs. Trumbull, having 
no children of their own, took Sister Julia's 12-year-old daughter 
Nancy into their family, regarding her always as their own, 
though there was no legal adoption. Her home was with them 
as long as they lived, and in their declining years she was able in 
some measure to repay them for all their goodness to her. 


Meanwhile the struggle against ill health still went on, until 
in the winter of 1874-5 severe hemorrhages from the nose made 
it necessary for the busy man to drop everything and abstain from 
all exertion, mental as well as physical. What such enforced 
idleness meant to so active a man, can scarcely be imagined except 
by those who have experienced it, but no word of complaint ever 
passed his lips. For nearly two years he was unable to attend to 
business, and in January, 1877 he severed his connection with the 
Gazette and Courier. 

As he grew stronger, he spent much time in the open air, dis- 
playing great taste in the arrangement of his grounds, which at 
that time covered an acre and a half. He took keen delight in his 
flowers, especially in his water garden in the lower part of the 
grounds, where the Smith College laundry is now being built. 
This was supplied from a natural spring which had been dis- 
covered when the cellar for his house was dug. This water was 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 205 

collected in a tub in the upper part of the garden, thus supplying 
the force for a small fountain which played into the pond. At 
one time there were 16 varieties of water plants in the pond ; and 
the goldfish which had been put into it, flourished until there 
were four or five dozen of them, which became so tame that they 
would eat cracker out of our hands. A pleasant part of the daily 
program was a walk down to the pond to feed the fishes. 

Though Mr. Trumbull never became very strong after the ill- 
ness which necessitated his retirement, yet his days of usefulness 
were by no means over. In 1876 he published a Directory and 
Historical Register of Northampton which contained 218 pages. 
In 1884 he was elected City Treasurer and filled that office six 
years, being elected year after year without opposition, till in 
1889 he declined a renomination. He was a member of the Clark 
Library committee for over 30 years, and in 1894 became one of 
the trustees of Forbes Library, holding this office until two years 
before his death. He was also one of the Board of Almoners for 
the Whiting Street Fund, and for many years clerk of the First 
Church Parish. 

Mr. Trumbull's intense love of nature, which has appeared in 
his descriptions of the short journeys he took, led him to become 
an enthusiastic member of the Northampton Natural History 
Society, which was formed some time during the '80s. Among 
his papers is an article on the wren family, which was undoubtedly 
prepared for a meeting of this society. This and a collection of 
butterflies, which he made, show not a scientific knowledge of the 
subject, to be sure, but genuine interest in all living and growing 

The History of Northampton 

But the most important work of his life was still to be accom- 
plished. For ten years before his retirement, he had been look- 
ing up the early records of the town, and in 1881 he came into 
possession and half ownership of the Judd Manuscripts, which 
he and Deacon George Hubbard bought of the heirs of Sylvester 
Judd. These remarkable manuscripts, supposed to have been 

206 Smith College Studies in History 

compiled in 27 years from 1831 to 1858, are of enormous extent, 
comprising 54 volumes or 19,000 closely written pages. 

As the Hampshire Gazette Supplement, issued in celebration 
of the fifth anniversary of the Daily Hampshire Gazette, states: 
"The books are a collection of facts relative to persons, families, 
records, deeds, anecdotes and of town meeting doings, of towns 
from Northampton to New Haven, with information about towns 
in Eastern Massachusetts. The four volumes on Northampton 
contain extracts from deeds and records, showing the allotment 
of home lots, long lists of inventories of estates, births, marriages 
and deaths. One volume relates to early families. He gave the 
name and site of the original allotment of lands and traced them 
nearly to 1800. There are interviews with many aged persons 
relative to ancient customs. The contents form no continuous 
story, and are put together just as Mr. Judd found leisure to get 

This valuable material was of little practical use without an 
index, and to the work of indexing Mr. Trumbull first applied 
himself. This almost Herculean task occupied him for years; 
but at length he completed the indexes to 16 volumes, namely: 
eleven volumes entitled Connecticut, one of deeds and the four 
upon Northampton. Just when he began the work of putting 
the mass of material together for the History of Northampton, 
it is impossible to say, but it seems probable that it was about the 
year 1876. 

My own most vivid memory of my uncle is confined to these 
last 25 years of his life. The regular program for the day in- 
cluded two hours or so spent in the garden, and it was a pleasing 
sight to see him walking about among his flowers, nearly always 
followed closely by the dog and cats, for he was a great lover of 
pets, and all animals recognized him as a friend. Indeed it was 
a common saying in the family, that they never paid any attention 
to anybody else when he was present. After this time in the 
open air, he was for the rest of the morning and a ])art of the 
afternoon to be found in his study, a pleasant soutlnvest room 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 207 

on the second floor. Here with the fire-proof safe containing 
the precious Judd Manuscripts at his left hand, he sat at his table, 
writing or pouring over the yellowed pages with their records of 
the past. It was a labor in which he found the keenest pleasure, 
and no effort, no expenditure of time necessary for the verifi- 
cation of his statements, was ever a burden to him. I think we 
scarcely realized in those days what he was accomplishing, until 
in December of the year 1898 he completed the publication of the 
first volume of his history. But before this the second volume 
had been practically finished ; a most fortunate thing, as he w^as 
able to do comparatively little work of any kind during the last 
winter and spring of his life. 

Last Days 

His last three years were marked by increasing feebleness, 
and though he appeared uniformly cheerful and courageous, it 
seems when we look back, as though he were trying to hide the 
melancholy realization, that his days on earth were numbered. 

A package of letters, written by him during this period to the 
little niece of a deceased friend of the family, and lovingly pre- 
served by her through all these years, has recently been sent to 
me for perusal. Although these letters are bright and entertain- 
ing, suited to the comprehension of a child, yet it is easy to read 
between the lines the consciousness on his part of his growing 
weakness and of the narrowing of his sphere of activities. A 
few extracts from them will serve to illustrate Mr. Trumbull's 
droll way of telling things as well as his habit of putting the best 
foot forward and making light of his infirmities. 

"Prospect Cottage, 
Northampton, Aug. 16, 1896. 
My Dear May: 

Your very nice and interesting letter was duly received and I 
was very glad to know that you could write so well and so cor- 
rectly. It was always a great pleasure to me to get letters from 
Aunt Ida when she was away on her vacations, and 1 hope you 

208 Smith College Studies in History 

will find enjoyment enough in mine to enable us to keep up a 
correspondence that may grow in interest to both of us. 

I have often thought of you during the hot days of last week, 
and wished that I could enjoy the bathing and the fun you have. 
. . . . The next thing I am expecting is that you will have 
a wheel of your own. Tell Mamma that will be the next thing 
her little girl will be teasing for, and then she will want to go to 
the post office every time and not give Paul a chance to get the 
mail .... 

I wish you could come up here and help us feed the fishes 
and pet the cat. That reminds me to inquire about the kittens 
we saw at Duxbury. How is the little lame one and have the 
rest all grown up to be big cats? Our fish are as tame as ever, 
and always crowd to the edge of the pond when anyone goes 
near it, and then they are always hungry, fairly tumbling over 
one another to get a chance to nibble the cracker, and when the 
cracker is gone they bite your fingers. In the pond with the 
fishes are a great many bullfrogs, and a few days ago Jamie, and 
Nat Faxon, a cousin of his from Stoughton, came over with 
Jamie's air-gun and shot half a dozen or more of the frogs. 
They were big old fellows and the boys carried off their hind 
legs to have them cooked. It is said that frogs legs are equal 
to the nicest chicken. I never have eaten any, but am willing to 
take anybody's word for it, rather than try to eat them myself." 

Under date of August 1, 1897, he writes: 

"My Dear May : 

Your letter of the 25tli was duly received. I was much inter- 
ested in the cobweb party, and would like to know something 
more about it. Were you dressed in cobwebs, and where did you 
get them all? Did you stand out on the lawn till the spiders 
spun their webs all over you, or did you have veils made of cob- 
webs, ornamented with live spiders in the act of catching flies? 
You see I never had the pleasure of attending such a party. 
When I was young spiders were never industrious enough to 
spin webs for parties. I suppose you must have a new kind 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 209 

now, probably sea-shore spiders, that by constant bathing are 
able to work faster. When you come up to Prospect Cottage 
again, maybe if it is the season for spiders, we will try to get up 
a genuine cobweb entertainment." 

The following extract is from a letter written March 13, '98. 

"We were all so sorry to hear that you have been sick, and 
sincerely hope that you are better. We have all been hoping that 
we should see you at the Easter vacation. Now that you cannot 
come, the only way will be for us to go to Boston and visit you, 
but I don't know when there will be any chance of that. I am 
expecting to publish the first volume of my history of North- 
ampton in June, am very much hurried in getting it out. Aunt 
Nan is helping me and I hardly know how I should get along 
without her. I hope you will get well soon, or at least well 
enough to come up to our sanitarium where we can cure you up 
with good air, green grass and lots of fun. 

All of our invalids are slowly improving, and with good 
weather, quiet dispositions, good consciences, I think will all be 

"March 27, 1898. 
My Dear May : 

As I haven't heard from you for some little time, I am very 
much afraid that you are worse, though I had much rather hear 
that you had forgotten to write, than to know that you have been 
prevented by sickness. 

We are all slowly improving at Prospect Cottage, and hope to 
be all of us quite well when the spring has fairly opened. 

The weather has been unusually mild for March, and we have 
peas planted and hotbeds made, a week or ten days earlier than 
usual. Our tulip and daffy beds have already started, the daffies 
are all in bud and will soon be in blossom. The fish-pond has 
been uncovered, and they are all there, Sampson, Jumbo, Sieg- 
fried, Prince of Orange and all the rest, large as life and fat as 
butter. We have already commenced our summer work of daily 
feeding them with cracker, and they all come sv/arming up to us 
whenever we go near them. 

210 Smith College Studies ix History 

Now we all want you to pack your little gripsack, put on your 
little bonnet, and get inside of your little red cloak, and come up 
with Mary Frary, and make us as long a visit as Mamma is 
willing to spare you. If you are sick, we have all of us our 
medicine which we have to take every day. and I think we shall 
be willing to spare a little if you should need it. It is a good 
kind of medicine, is doing us all good, and no doubt will have the 
same effect on you. 

There are lots of robins, English sparrows and other birds that 
I cannot name, all over the lawn, and then Bennie has found his 
voice, and it seems as if he could not sing enough. 

Then you and I can play ball, croquet or anything we like on 
the lawn. There is no knowing what lots of good a little of the 
Prospect Cottage fresh air will do you. When you get ready to 
go back home, maybe we can induce one of the saucy robins to 
go as chaperone. If they should all decline on account of family 
duties, I will undertake the task myself, if you will only come." 

The following letter, dated May 1, indicates that this urgent 
invitation was accepted, and Mr. Trumbull went as far as Spring- 
field with the child and put her in care of an acquaintance for 
the rest of the trip home. 

"My Dear May : 

"Your unexpected letter of the 28th was duly received. You 
need not send me the money for the fare, but keep it as a birth- 
day present from your old friend and admirer. 

I accomplished all my business in Springfield and reached 
home in time for dinner. I suppose you had a good time on the 
cars with Representative Crouch, and that he entertained you so 
thoroughly that the way did not seem long. 

I have decorated my room since you left, by hanging the 
American flag in the front window in the shape of a curtain. It 
shows that we are all patriotic at P. C, and perfectly willing 
that Spain should be soundly whipped. The flag shows well from 
the street." 

Two letters, written in January, 1899, speak of his poor health. 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 211 

In the first he says : "My health is improving but I am not well 
yet. I am not doing anything. I go down town most every day 
unless the weather is too unpleasant, and generally spend the 
afternoon on the lounge, sleeping most of the time in company 
with 'Nig,' the kitten." 

January 16 he writes : "I felt so miserable yesterday, that I 
could not get up courage to answer your letter. To-day I am 
not feeling much better but will send you a short screed, so 
that you will know that we have not entirely forgotten you. I 
have not been out of the house for several days, and don't 
think I shall go to-day. I spend a good deal of the time in sleep. 
Most of the afternoons I am stretched on the lounge with 'Nig' 
for company, and we both sleep as hard as we can. In some 
respects I am improving but don't get strength as fast as I wish." 

The letter for February 6 begins : "Yesterday I spent most 
of the day before the open fire in the library, holding 'Nig,' and 
both of us had our brains baked so hard that it was impossible 
for either of us to write letters. To-day I am not much better, 
but as I have not seen 'Nig' since breakfast, I suppose he is as 
well as usual." 

"Northampton, March, 5, 1899. 
My Dear May : 

Your nice letter of the 20th came duly to hand. Your two 
riddles are too hard for us. The first one about the flower in 
the face, Mrs. Trumbull guessed at once, she said it was tulips, 
and I guess she is right. The other about the Spaniards is a 
poser. No one has had the gumption to get any answer to it 
as yet. It must be that our guessing caps are worn out, and we 
shall have to get a new supply. But in the meantime wo should 
be glad if you will send us the answer in your next letter. 

To-day is rainy and no one but Johanna [the maid] has gone 
to church. Aunt Nan wanted to go but the wetness overhead 
as well as underfoot prevented. The rest of us — well, we had 
our usual Sunday infirmity, and concluded that we had rather 

212 Smith College Studies in History 

sit by the fire in the library, and so we did. Aly health is some- 
what improved but I havn't got entirely well yet. 

We are beginning to count the days when we can again feed 
the fishes. They have been housed up under the ice all winter 
and no doubt are lonesome. Just as soon as the snow and ice 
are gone we shall endeavor to make up lost time and delayed 
cracker with them. We shall all be glad when the snow has dis- 
appeared and gardening time comes again. 

If you have any more conundrums, send us easy ones. You 
don't know how it wrenches our intellects to try to guess such 
hard ones. We had a show of Mrs. Jarley's Wax Works at 
the Town Hall the other evening, and last night Miss Capen had 
it repeated in her gymnasium for the benefit of her school." 

"March 19, 1899. 

As usual we are all at home to-day. In fact the going is so 
bad that none of us dared to venture out. Everything is cov- 
ered with ice, sidewalks, trees, roads and everything out of doors 
that has no umbrella over it. Then we are all sick. Aunt Nan 
has rheumatism, Mrs. Trumbull is too tired, Martha is afraid 
of falling on the ice and I have a bad cold. Havn't been out of 
the house for a week. I am improving and hope to be all right 
in a few days. You can imagine Prospect Cottage turned into 
a sort of hospital. 

We were all so glad to hear from your mother that there 
was a chance that you would make us a visit. You don't know 
how rejoiced we shall be to see you once more. Perhaps you 
may not think it very great fun to visit a hospital, but we will 
try and get well before you come, and then we won't be selfish 
either, but will give you some of our medicine, share and share 
alike. Let us know in your next letter when you propose to 
come, and we will make all arrangements to get well before the 
time comes. Tell us all about how you are coming. Hope I 
shall be well enough to meet you in Springfield, if you come that 

How very sad and to us very sudden was the death of Mr. 

Recollections of James Russell Trumbull 213 

Henry Burt. He was here at the house a few weeks before his 
death. He was a very pleasant and agreeable man and I shall 
miss him very much, as we had much in common in the work 
we had in hand. 

We all send lots of love and kisses to you all, and long for 
the time when you will be with us again. 

From your loving friend, 

J. R. T." 

This visit was, I think, never made, probably because of his 
ste)adily failing health. Yet in his next letter of May 7, he still 
speaks of getting better. 'Tt is about time for me to answer 
some of your nice letters. I am so glad that you do not wait 
for the invalid to answer them, but do the writing and answer- 
ing yourself. I am happy to say that my health is slowly im- 
proving. I am still able to lie down, and manage to get down 
to the pond once and sometimes twice in a day unless the weather 
is bad. 

Many thanks to you for the nice May flowers. They were 
very fresh and fragrant. It was so good of you to remember 
the lazy invalid of P. C. who has not had spunk enough to write 
even an apology for a letter. 

Did Aunt Nan tell you how kind the neighbors have been? 
They have been sending me trout and wine jelly and cider. I 
suppose that is the reason that I have improved so much. I am 
still weak and cannot exercise scarce at all without getting very 
tired and out of breath. I wish you could be here with me this 
summer to cheer me up and do some errands occasionally. 

It would be so nice if you could come with your mother. 
Perhaps if you coax her she will come and bring you. You could 
paddle in the pond with the bullfrogs and fishes, and have just 
as good a time as at Duxbury, and there would not be the least 
danger of getting your mouth full of salt water." 

The very last of these letters to his "little sweetheart" as 
Mr. Trumbull was wont to call the child, was dated May 23, 
1899. Here again he speaks of "slowly improving in health 

214 Smith College Studies in History 

though not yet very rugged." He mentions also the painting of 
the house, the garden, the cat and kittens and the fishes in the 
same cheerful tone. 

From this time on it was a steady decline until the third of 
July, when he passed into the higher life. Mrs. Trumbull died 
in December of the same year, surviving her husband only five 

Much has been said about the value of his legacy to the city 
of Northampton, and many have been the expressions of esteem 
and of sincere appreciation of his work. But we who knew him 
in his own home, cherish above all his achievements our memory 
of the genial, unassuming, thoughtful, gentle man. His ready 
sympathy and kindness, his unfailing patience and courage in his 
struggle against ill health, his quaint sense of humor, always con- 
tagious, even though it found expression in oft repeated witti- 
cisms, endeared him to his friends, while his calm good sense and 
his absolute fairness and integrity filled them with the deepest 


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