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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 7, page 65, May 7-8, 1855

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Identifier: DX03858877

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 7, page 65, May 7-8, 1855

Description: Describes a visit to Phillip's Asylum in an attempt to see Harry Price.


her [Mary Bilton]. It is all over.

I couldn’t put that down then, but the murder’s cut now. Tis all well, and so good night to my scribbling for the present.

8. Tuesday. Sam [Gunn] coming, out with him, I having resolved to visit the Bethnal Green Asylum wherein poor [Harry] Price is incarcerated; Sam willing to make an unnecessary call on an acquaintance in the Mile End road, on excuse for a day’s holiday. Up the Monument by the way, then, resisting fraternal exhortations to visit the Tower, eastwards. Leaving Sam to make his call, I reached Phillip’s Asylum, a spacious building, garden grounds environing it. Applying at the Porter’s entrance I was admitted into an inner square where were officials of amerliorated turnkey aspect, and patients, sunning themselves, While crossing, one of the latter, a stout, dark bearded man of forty, (whom involuntarily I half thought a New Orleans American) came after asking my country, taking me, he said, for a Swiss. He proved to be one Wright, an actor, one of Burtons company in New York during 1849; asked after many actors &c most of whom I knew. I learnt he was going out shortly. The turnkeys intimating that they couldn’t undertake the responsibility of showing Harry to me without sanction, I returned to the resident clerk or manager’s office, where I found a curt, crisp, abrupt individual lunching. “Was I a relative of Mr Price’s?” No. "They must decline letting me see him, — it would excite him &c &c." This was done rudely, just after the English railroad clerk style, wherefore I responded with covert irony; and on his admitting that had I a line or so from Price’s father I could see the son, commented on the rules which would then allow me to "excite" him. "Our object is to

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1855-05-07

Type(s): Diary

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

Subjects: Asylums
Mental illness


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