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Treasure 8: Letter from Thayer to Mr. Robert Lonsdale, Trieste, February 4, 1868 (M2B021)


Consulate of the United States of America

Trieste, February 4, 1868

My dear Mr. Lonsdale,

Thanks for your last note and best greetings to your wife.

Is Mr. Potter still alive? If so I will thank you to forward the enclosed letter to his address.

The object of the note is to obtain something about J.B. Cramer—i.e. something which will either confirm or [crossed out: deny] refute the assertion of a German literary quack, that Cramer, after making Beethoven’s acquaintance in Vienna, never afterwards used to speak well of him either as a composer or man! If you father is still living, as I hope, perhaps he will kindly give me some note or notes on the pianist either by his own or your hand. Or perhaps Mrs. Cramer, if still living, the widow, might be willing to write me a line.

The fact is that the writer in question has represented matters so as to cast a shade upon Cramer; now as I have learned to look upon that great pianist as one of the first [finest?] in musical history, I wish to be able in my volume II, to refute in toto the attack upon his memory and fame.

The particular point now in question you understand to be, Cramer’s feelings towards Beethoven, and the style of his conversation about him. I have no doubt you will be willing to aid me in this, and perhaps you can write me a note on the subject which I may insert in my book wholly or in part.

 As ever, grateful for you kindness when in London,

and yours truly

Alexander W. Thayer.