Search Our New Beta Online Collections!

Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 2, page 87, April 25-26, 1851

<< Back to search results

View this document

From collection:Part of:

Identifier: DX01012309

Title: Thomas Butler Gunn Diaries: Volume 2, page 87, April 25-26, 1851

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


his [William Barth’s] being “in love” for the ninety ninth time, and also purpoting [purporting] matrimony, though not immediately. The ladye fair is from Baltimore, none uneuphonious, Margaretta Duff, and from her he had just parted, she being returning for a space to her birthplace. How he first thought of it, — and that she had kept the illegitimate child of a dead sister, unhelped. / Out with him; to [John N.] Genin’s, where I stayed awhile, then persuaded by Barth to the [Governor’s] Island, leaving Genin’s book at a store in Greenwich Street. A bright sunny day, and being rowed across from the Battery, through the sparkling water, found the objects of the late cheerless rain in the lush and lusty green lock of the grass. To the Hospital, reading, and anon an half hours digging at a certain contemplated garden, — the Chapel of Saint Cornelius the Centurion the first Christian Soldier on the right, and farther off the white barracks with the gay flag flying, the fresh sunlight in the water in the distance. Dinner, fowl feeding, the cock as true to old [Geoffrey] Chaucer’s description as when written five centuries ago. Reading, and when Barth dozed, pocketted [William] Shakspere and wandered out to the beach. There for three good hours, thinking of Homer, of Shakspere, of Life and Death, and of Love. The tide in, wave after wave dashing on with a lulling monotony of sound. Here and there were little heaps of wood-refuse and weed burning, and further on beside this fort I met a philosophic fire kindler, in regimental blue. As I came up, quoth he “Not destroying Sir, only changing the shape of matter. He “hailed from” Connecticut, had been a deserter on the Mississippi, quoted Tom Paine, and was half a prisoner, then. / Back to the Hospital, when Hyperions flaming hair had sunk below the ocean line, and supper. Reading [Frederick] Marryatt’s Pacha again, then at 8 to the boat and Connor, and returned to the city.

26. Saturday. Dillon Mapother came, being in town for the day. With him to Holts [168 Duane St], to Greenwich St, for my book, to [Joseph] Richardson’s, the Post Office, and to [Frank] Royals, at his shop. Parted on Hudson Street. Afternoon, crossed to Hoboken, and the old spot. And when there, what a contrast to the bleak afternoon of our last visit. Buds on the trees, a deep rich green sward, and leaves

Rights: NoC-US


Dates: 1851-04-25

Type(s): Diary

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

Subjects: Women
Battery Park (New York, N.Y.)
Military deserters
Books and reading
Governors Island (New York County, N.Y.)
Armed Forces


| More

Disclaimer: We are working to create a web-based collection index. Information available through this website should be considered "draft only."