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Treasure 8: Letter from Thayer to Graham, Vienna, June 10, 1863(M2B024)


Legation of the United States of America at Vienna

June 20, 1863

My dear Graham,

Your dispatch of the 8th was taken to the Legation, so that I just saw it yesterday on reaching the office. I wrote a dispatch in reply but we all thought that as Fiske would probably be in Heide[l]berg nearly as soon as the dispatch, it was hardly worth while & cost to send it.

I had a note from Fiske [crossed out: Saturd] a few days since saying he thought he stay in Munich over Sunday, whence as, I suppose, he will push on to Heidelberg. I am all in confusion about him and his letters, I am afraid – for there came one from Bayard Taylor (judging from handwriting and postmark, “Gotha’) – which I forwarded under cover to Webster, consul at Munich –

Now from Fiske’s letter I learn that Webster was suddenly taken very severely ill, and who knows but that my letter, enclosing Taylor’s, is still lying unopened! I wrote to Taylor, so I suppose his next will be sent to Heidelberg. –

My mind is so taken up now with my Beethoven work that I have hardly common sense for anything else and if I make great falls and blunders in other matters pl[e]ase forgive and forget if you can.

Do you know what I wish? No? Will it is that you had come hither, and taken summer lodgings in some one of the exquisitely situated villages near Vienna. I know nothing like it near any large city – smaller places, Salzburg, the Swiss towns, & so on, are amid still grander scenery but for beauty of hill & valley, together with the advantage of being near a large center[e] – nothing equals Vienna.

I am slowly but I think surely working my way into Beethoven’s life and really have hopes that the child will be born sometime or other. Are you glad?! – I am.

I have given Fiske a quantity of “researching” to do for me, if it is in his power – it not, I shall accept his good will for the deed.

I suppose, saving the illness of which you wrote Fiske (didn’t you?), you must have had a wondrously good time [in] Italy – I do not envy, but will [crossed out: whi] wish from my hea[r]t I could imitate you!

With all the good wishes in the world to your best of wives

I am yours

With sincerest regard

Alexr. W. Thayer