Letter from Charlotte Cushman to James Fields, Nov 21, 1862

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Letter from Charlotte Cushman to James Fields, Nov 21, 1862


Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876
Stebbins, Emma, 1815-1882
Fields, Annie, 1834-1915
Fields, James Thomas, 1817-1881
Artists--Sculptors--US American
Atlantic Monthly
Gender Norms
Relationships-- Intimate--Same-sex


Tilton has not been handling the sending of Cushman's belongings very well. Cushman is grateful for the books James Fields has sent her way, but comments on him forgetting to do so as of lately. These two issues cause her describe men (="sex") as weak and the reason for her "spinsterhood." She urges him to send her the October copy of the Atlantic Monthly, at the same time complaining about Annie Fields never writing her. James Fields is "making [his] fortune." Cushman laments that she missed her chance this year: "alas why am not I. If Emma had only been content to stop in America this year. I would have made mine too."
Emma Stebbins has been working on a new statue but has issues with sending the Mann statue as she would lose money because of the exchange rate and is afraid of it being broken on the way.


Huntington Library, James Thomas Fields Papers and Addenda


Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876


Huntington, JTFP, Box 12, FI 689





Letter Item Type Metadata


[page 1] Dear J.T F.
Tilton has arrived. by him I hear many things. among the finest. That he entirely forgot what he was to do with the little +++ sketch painted by Miss Adams & sent by me to trace the walls belonging to my children. I sent a number of things by him--& imagined that they would reach their destination through his care. alas. some of them Ned only recd [received] the day before he left for St Louis. & never knew at all what had become of his little picture & felt awkwardly about asking Tilton about it--thinking it was one of Tiltons [sic] own--& that perhaps he had found a customer for it. Many years ago. I made up my mind that it would be a mistake to trust any of your sex hence my spinsterhood. why was I ever so weak as to trust my property to one of them. I wont [sic] again. so there I have quietly remarked to Tilton, that men

[page 2] are but weak things after all. Then too I have another proof in you having such an opportuny [sic] of sending a lot of books to my fortunates living in Rome. Why we would have been glad even to have paid trade price. if you had bought them in New York & sent them - having forgotten them in Boston - but there. your conscience must have been in a state of bluster [?] ever since, so I wont [sic] +++ you any more! I dare say you think us ungrateful. because I never thank you for those lovely books of Mintheops [?]. lovely & cool & brisk & +++ & new as nature! They have delighted us & many other weary tired souls [?] & we have thanked you over & over again. and now what shall I say. we are back in Rome. a little later this year! & shaking down into our corner. Miss Adams is here & working like a Trojan. She seems very comfortably situated with two good working women & is well & happy. I have not been allowed to go to her studio yet. as she "had nothing to show" - but in a day or two I am to be allowed! Miss Truman is also here with them. as nervous as inscrutable as ever. very clever with her fingers,

[page 3] but oh so painfully shy & silent. Emma. our Emma Stebbins--is at work upon a sketch for a little statue of "Joseph being seventies [sic] years old was feeding the flock" - and then she will get to a "baby nurcery [sic]". Suggested by Shelleys [?, sic] +++ to Mercury [?]. The statue of Mann is not yet just off to Munich. it is waiting for another month [?] to be taken of [sic] in. for fear it should get broken in the sending — & the man who makes them is deeply busy. Besides exchange is at such an awful point [?]. That +++ one quarter or one third of the money would be lost to them by having it sent now. & it would not be right for Emma to lose it--would it?-- Send send oh send the Atlantic Monthly. my soul aches for it Tilton brought the Nov' number. but I have not the October.--I hear you are making your fortune. alas why am not I. If Emma had only been content to stop in America this year. I would have made mine too. but she would not. & I sit here & +++! Our Minister has come & is very nice. so is Mrs Minister so am I so are you. so is Emma so is Annie why does she never write. Ever yours, Truly
Charlotte Cushman 

[page 1 added] P.S. write to Ned about the picture! 


Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876


Fields, James Thomas, 1817-1881


Rome, Italy

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Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876, “Letter from Charlotte Cushman to James Fields, Nov 21, 1862,” Archival Gossip Collection, accessed February 21, 2024, https://www.archivalgossip.com/collection/items/show/146.

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