W1197 TO ELIZABETH FULLER MCQUESTEN from Mrs. Aphia Fuller Sawyer
Jun 19 1855 Tuesday,
To: Mrs. Elizabeth Fuller McQuesten, Hamilton, Ontario
From: 35 Essex Street, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A.
Dear Lizzie [or Lissie?],
My own negligence is unaccountable even to myself but I trust your time had been so occupied that you have not found the leisure to consider the subject at length. We certainly
could not have pleasanter journey without our chosen
protectors and found Father waiting at the Depot in Boston
at 5 P.M. Last Wednesday. One of the newly married couples from the International traveled in company with us, even to
our own door. We seemed fated to meet and to cap the climax
by accident secured the same carriage in Boston. I met
another acquaintance on a wedding tour at Albany and just as we were stepping on board the boat to cross the Hudson who should pay his respects but the Redoubtable Knight of the Adams house on a retreat from Attica without doubt, exceedingly glad to secure the presence of Ladies to cover a [?] from the camp of the Fair Ladies in said city. The youthful gallant was especially delighted to receive congratulating nods of his friends, who saw his company from N.J. He waited on me into the Massasoit House.1 A gentleman
said to him, "I've caught you now Chamberlain. At table the
clerk in person waited on us, and the conductor of the train
guessed he was flush! &c. &c. He told mother a long story
more romantic than the mentioned time at Medford. I have not yet found time to hear it. I presume it will keep until I write again.
And now business. I went out the next morning after I came home and ordered the screen frame. They think the work very handsome and I will believe will make a frame worthy of it. They object to a white satin back as white is so soon
turned yellow by exposure and offers but slight protection
to the colors and also say that they prefer to plait a silk instead of satin as satin folds tho' at first hands on do not wear as well but soon become set, losing the rich sound look the fold should retain. White will of course go next the picture, but I have not decided as to the shade outside.
Crimson is very desirable as it is the strongest color and
will serve to heighten the colors of the work. I thought you might have a decided choice. I also tho't it desirable of the Piano cloth purchased for it to match. I have had the cloth I mentioned taken to Chickerings rooms and spread upon a seven octave Piano. I find it to be very wide, so that the fringe will reach within 5 or 6 inches of the floor on either side. The length is just right. The cloth is on India
Crimson Satin, a deep color, but a light shade if you can
imagine. Look at a peony lined with whited Indian silk (you know it has not a fine finished look like the French silks)and a Fringe 9 inches wide and a narrow [gimp?] heading. The Fringe is variegated. Each color 1 1/2 inches wide. Scarlet, Green, Silver, Orange, blue, white, very rich and heavy. It has a double border and double corner patterns thus with large figure in centre and smaller ones at convenient distances all over it length 100 inches and 88 inches wide. The width of fringe added of course all
around. You might try something of the size upon your piano. I told the clerk I should hear from you in a week or ten days: altho' I thought it was rather wide you might purchase it. In making further inquiry at the other large stores, I
learned that a gentleman in Chestnut St. had another cloth. It has been procured for my inspection. The same size and style lined with light green and has a pink in the fringe instead of violet. Price of 1st $100.00 Second one $90.00. All things considered I should
prefer the first one of any. But my advice is not to buy it
until you have seen it with your own eyes or at least
something similar. Such an article cannot often be bought
in Boston. I do not believe there is another for sale save
these two. But you might
be able to secure such a thing occasionally at Stuarts N.J. or at anytime by sending by a sea captain to India. It is very possible that these same ones may not be sold till you come on.
I hope I have given an intelligible description--and both of the articles and my feelings. I feel that it is much a matter of taste, that I dare not urge you to buy it altho' it is worth the money asked. Wednesday I was so tired writing last night that I make another days delay. Your lace I have not been able to get yet.
I find my health much better than when I left home, yet am often sensibly reminded that there is a point beyond which it is not convenient to go. Warren did not go out of town to board at all for he and they all were daily expecting us home for a week before we came, not crediting the idea that Mother could be persuaded to stay so long away. Mother was quite as much benefitted by our journey and visit as I, and finds her new home pleasanter than when she
left. She had been somewhat low spirited and homesick.
Miss Boyd leaves for Medford in a day or two. Fanny is very well and was perfectly delighted with her new doll. Tell Isaac that by the time he comes on Fanny will be able to read the cards he sent her as well as himself. She is beginning to learn to write, but says 'tis easy to make the marks but they won't all go on one line. I have not felt
quite well enough to day with the East wind or I should have
had Fanny write to Isaac but if he will be patient perhaps
Fanny may be able to send a letter in her own hand writing. Warren has sent the value of the draft to Robert.
Give abundance of love and regard from us all to your home circle. I would write an especial message to each, did not feel so tired. We enjoyed our visit at your house very much as we could not otherwise do, when so much was done for our comfort.
As ever yours,
Aphia [Fuller Sawyer]
1 The Massasoit House is now one of the historic buildings
in Springfield Massachusetts.