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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 7, page 175, November 20-30, 1855

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Identifier: DX03972125

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 7, page 175, November 20-30, 1855

Description: Describes telling Jesse Haney about his unstable state of mind.


Once I looked in at the Bleecker Street basement of an evening, and as usual found Sol [Eytinge] and W. W. [William Waud] hippish, blase, lazy and recriminating. I have had, and written a letter, from and to Alf [Waud]. Sometimes a horror of my room [at 290 Broadway] seized me, — sometimes I fled to it as to a refuge. And always the dread grew more and more. Most of all I br feared the afternoon part of the day, — and that if I went mad, I should see my mother [Naomi Butler Gunn] no more. Of home, of Chacombe, of my past life, of a thousand things, my mind ranged incessantly. I felt complete Despair, not one faint gleam of hope irradiating the black slough of Despondency in which my soul was drenched. And one afternoon, (a bitter cold, though sunny one ‘twas,) the dread of coming Insanity so overpowered me, that I rushed across the Park to the Picayune Office, with the intent to tell [Jesse] Haney of my state. By the way I met [A.F.] Banks, (whom I’d not seen for some time,) and rather startled him by my look. In the Office were [William] Levison, Haney and [Frank] Bellew, (—the latter of whom I had heard of being in New York before.) I requested Haney to call at my room on his returning up-townwards, and he complying, told him all. He was very kind. I went up town with him, supped at the boarding house, sat awhile in the Basement (where Sol was blaspheming Levison, — his every second sent sentence being a request “to go to H—l;”) — and then to [James] Parton’s boarding house, to see Colonel [Hugh] Forbes, he having visited me, in the morning about making some sketches for him. From thence we went to the Edwardses, in [745] Broadway, and parted at 11. Haney wished

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1855-11-30

Type(s): Diary

Maker/Creator: Gunn, Thomas Butler, 1826-1903

Subjects: Diaries
Mental illness


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