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Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 2, page 61, March 9-10, 1851

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Identifier: DX09952948

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 2, page 61, March 9-10, 1851

Description: Describes a visit to William Barth on Governors Island.


I said nothing, but lay thinking a long time.

9 10. Monday. A bell ringing at about six aroused us. So after lavation and dressing we had breakfast in an adjoining kitchen, with three soldiers in blue jackets and pants. Then, [William] Barth having little[word crossed out] various duties to perform I issued forth and strolled around the margin of the little island. A fresh breezy day, the snow lying thick and crisp on the ground and the sun out. Staten Island all snow crowned, the sails of the vessels down the Narrows and a most picturesque view of New York, the Battery with clustering masts of ships on right and left; busy Brooklyn, and little Jersey. Stood in front of the Fort Williams, on the esplanade, with portholes and grinning painted common mouths behind, gazing, re constructing the scene ere Hendrick Hudsons Half Moon fist [first] voyaged hither, imagining the tall trees and underwood, and leafy verdure clothing these banks then, the wild birds, the sunlight as gay then, the great wild continent with its red inhabitants all unconscious of their destiny and of the wise, wicked, great, restless, glorious race that was surely and slowly to “improve them from the face of the earth.” And other and more personal thoughts were mine. Returned, after gazing at the common with gaping blatant, dumb cruel mouths, and snow on their coverings; and ere long crossed to Brooklyn with Barth, in a boat with a sail. From thence to New York and [177] Canal Street, where he stayed an hour and then departed with [Francois] Rabelais and Tristram Shandy . / Alf Waud not well. / In obedience to a requisition conveyed yesterday by the boy [Fred] Anderson, after dinner I went to Park Place. It was to put a drawing of a church in color. Engaged in it all the afternoon, [Charles] Anderson conversing sometimes of Madeira, and the pleasures of existence in that island; and sometimes of the anticipatory decision of the President [Millard Fillmore] respecting the Capitol Plans. He evidently doubts success. [words crossed out] I

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1851-03-09

Type(s): Diary

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

Subjects: Indians of North America
Armed Forces
Battery Park (New York, N.Y.)
Governors Island (New York County, N.Y.)
Books and reading
United States Capitol (Washington, D.C.)


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