Cambridge, Mass. 26 August 1874
My dear & honored friend
y our kind and welcome letter of 24th July came a few days ago and I was delighted to hear that you were so well on your way to a return of good, sound health. With health come again I see your wonted good spirits, and I am sure we shall soon see some bright, cheery stories to show that you are yourself again!
I enclose here our half yearly statement of copyright due you with a draft on London (Brown, Shipley & Co.) for [£] 5/17/10 to cover the amount due. No one can be sorrier than we that the sum is so small. The book trade has been very dull and has suffered with all business this past season. Let us hope for better times.
I have been much concerned about a matter relating to you of which I will now speak frankly. The report in an Augsburg or Cologne paper (I think) of a conversation held with you, gave the impression here that not only had foreign publishers (except ourselves, honorably mentioned by you) paid no copyright on your books, but that you were really in need. The report was commented on in the various papers and at length the New York Tribune in an article entitled «The Children' s Debt" called on children to come forward and help their old friend. It was a kind, enthusiastic article, full of affection for you and called out several responses. Meanwhile, 1 was uneasy, for nothing in your letters had given such an impression to me, and yet it was long since I had heard from you, you were sick I knew, and thus I did not feel authorized to contradict plainly, such a statement. I feared you would be pained by being placed in a mistaken light and I wrote privately to the editor stating my views and sent also a letter in the name of the firm which he printed, and I herewith enclose. In this you will see our firm offered to take charge of any sum that might be raised, and this we did because in the correspondence in the paper, mention had been made of a Dane as ready to receive subscriptions whom we suspected as not being a trustworthy person.
I also wrote to Marcus Spring to leam if he had heard anything confirming the report, & he wrote me a kind letter saying that he had not, that he had impulsively written to the Tribune (see the enclosed signed M.S.) upon reading the article there, but with no other advices, and was sorry he had not written first to me. Alast he is now dead - only a day or two since the news came, but probably it has already been telegraphed to your country. Other affectionate letters followed, all breathing the kindest, most sympathetic feeling, but my letter had the effect, I suspect, of arresting the subscription somewhat. This I cannot say certainly, but I have of late seen nothing in the papers. Had there been any occasion for the children thus to show their gratitude, depend upon it there would have been a generous movement throughout the country. Tell me if we did right. I should be grieved indeed if we made a mistake. But I am confirmed in my view by what Mr. Boyesen has said to us. I did not see him, when he came here, for I was away, which I much regret. We all send our cordial greetings to you, and my wife thanks you for your very kind message, & sends her congratulations on your recovery. Let me hear from you soon again and believe me
Always faithfully yours
HORACE E. SCUDDER