Letter from Charlotte Cushman to Unknown [Rosalie Sully], Glasgow, Nov 30, [1845]

Dublin Core


Letter from Charlotte Cushman to Unknown [Rosalie Sully], Glasgow, Nov 30, [1845]


Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876
Sully, Rosalie, 1818-1847
Relationships-- Intimate--Same-sex
Cook, Eliza, 1818-1889
Social Events--Travels
Muspratt, Susan Cushman, 1822-1859
Intimacy--As topic


Charlotte Cushman laments the "restrained expression" of the addressee in letters addressed to Charlotte. She met the addressee when the latter was 18 years old. The addressee has blue eyes and Cushman repeatedly assures the addressee of her love. Cushman seems to be with Eliza Cook to whom she repeatedly talks about the addressee. Unfortunately, Cushman and the addressee cannot often meet without being watched by Cushman's sister. Cushman is very busy and also ill. She calls the addressee her "sweet little friend" and refers to herself as a "wanderer." Cushman feels "harrassed" by an issue that required her to engage in a "tedious" correspondence.


Library of Congress, Charlotte Cushman Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.


Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876


LoC, CCP 7:2304-2306



Letter Item Type Metadata


[2304] Glasgow, Sunday 30. Nov
Were I not thoroughly satisfied that you knew my life of toil & constant occupation I should be unhappy that I am not about to devote more time to writing to you – I think of you, I do, most constantly & with earnest love & affection but do what I would towards an attempt ever to write to you this last week. I  have been much engaged in my profession & besides this, have been most +++ harassed upon some matter which required long & tedious letters to be written I often sit down to my table with a resolution not to leave it until I had written at least one time to you. but before I could get through with my business letters I was wearied to my heart & had not a fresh thought & now I am thoroughly unfit to write to you for I am ill, miserably ill. I can hardly hold up my head, a week

[2304 reverse] of worry to one of my +++ nature  is sure to have its marks upon me & last night’s hard work finished me. I was more dead than alive last night at the end of the play & this morning. I managed with great difficulty to leave my bed soon but I could not. would not allow another day to pass without writing to you, my sweet friend, to thank you for your last dear long letter & to tell you exactly how & why you have not heard from your wanderer. Time slowly drags its way – two weeks from this day I shall have you with me oh how I look forward with delight to meeting you: & how I count the hours as they go by: you say "I have had you with me many hours in anticipation." Alas dear one. have you not learned that many of of our brightes hours. our dearest thoughts are in anticipation? & will you be as happy when I am with you as you now believe[?] you shall be?

[2305] I hope so from my heart. You ask "shall we be at Chapel together?" I fear not. My work on the Saturday travelling & acting at night will have me unfit for "Chapel" & I shall send my sister off to "Chapel" with Mr +++ [last three words inserted] while you come & nurse me. Will you do this, will you sit by me & sooth me with your sweet voice & gentle eyes. I know my own strength thoroughly & just what I can endure – I know that my Saturday work will be too much for me consequently I count safely upon the aching head & weary body that Sunday will bring: I wish my sister was not going to be with me for I wish much to have you all to myself. I want to talk to you a great deal & my sister has cold eyes & may frighten you but you will remember that I can be in Sheffield but two days & therefore you will forgive that anybody is near you but your own fond friend & so – you wont [sic] encounter my sisters [sic] eyes & how I wish you were near me now for I need kind words & looks & a loving heart

[2305 reverse] near me. My head is cracking with pain & +++ I am most miserable. I often think death might be a "great relief" & at times sigh for his embrace. You say you will be glad of the '+++' +++ the Book. There are plenty of them then & I shall be ashamed to give it to you so untidy[?] but you will love it for that it was mine. Will you not? +++ so, you were afraid that I should telegraph[?] that I would not be troubled with any more of +++ Ah, me. How little to you know me. Your letters are charms to me. there is freshness about them +++ +++ though they may be at times restrained making[?] me happy in their perusal – I only wish you +++ follow the example I set you of stepping over form & write to me oftener. not waiting for the +++ reply before you can venture a second. you did so this last time & make my heart bound again for this. I felt sure you loved me. Oh write to me often & often think how I may be chained down by +++ & over exertion & write to me very frequently You would not believe the comfort your letters are to me. like “manna in the wilderness”[?]

[2306] and your love for me came "full grown" bless you darling for your sweet assurance of affection believe me your love is [last three words inserted] not misplaced & you may look as friendly into the future as I do. for a shady continuance of it. I have hope & happiness in your love so you will have in mine. why you know me better. I have reflected. how strange it is – for two beings who have seen so little of each other. to entertain such strength of feeling. But then, there are minds so constituted by God’s goodness. that almost as it were by intention. can they find kindred spirits. No conversations. no being together could make that feeling stronger after being once inspired & no. absence. could ever make it less: +++ are of this family. The strong interest with which you +++ me formed a kindred view in your own heart & here shall we, acquaintances of an hour: much in [inserted] true warm friendship which years could not have made stronger

[2306 reverse] How happily & quickly will I listen to you while you tell me the cause of your "restrained expression" which I think I shall guess already. bless your sweet eyes how I wish I could look into their "blue depth" at this moment I think it would make me well. I do speak of you often to Eliza Cook who wished to see you & you shall meet one of these days. You would like her +++  – she is shy at first – but the best & truest of women. I enclose you a song she wrote to me after our first meeting. will you let me have it again. some of her poetry is beautiful in the expression & among this is "love on"-.---- I did not think you were so old as eighteen & I yet your mind was matured enough for me to have believed so. bless you dear one. I fear you will find this a strangely stupid note. but indeed indeed [twice]. I am feeling too ill to make it other. Write to me as often as you find inclination. Love me & trust me
I am fondly faithfully your attached
+++ Friday direct here 118 +++ after Friday direct Theater Royal Newcastle upon Tyne[?]


Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876


Glasgow, UK

Geocode (Latitude)


Geocode (Longitude)


Social Bookmarking




Cushman, Charlotte Saunders, 1816-1876, “Letter from Charlotte Cushman to Unknown [Rosalie Sully], Glasgow, Nov 30, [1845],” Archival Gossip Collection, accessed May 28, 2023, https://www.archivalgossip.com/collection/items/show/389.

Output Formats