July 27 Tuesday – In Weggis, Switzerland Sam telegraphed Frank Bliss, evidently finally arriving at the title for his new book “Following equator” [MTP]. Note: in England, More Tramps Abroad,.
Sam also wrote to Wayne MacVeagh.
We are thus far on our way to Vienna—whither, as the Berlin papers have it, we are going to train Clara’s voice for the operatic stage under Letchitizka [sic] the piano-maker. Some of which is not so, & the rest fictitious. We’ve got a snug & comfortable little villa, submerged in a sea of green woods on a slope of the Rigi overlooking the lake & the passing boats & widely frontiered by mountain crags & domes & steeped in eternal stillness & repose; & we shall not try to tear ourselves out of it till towards October. The next villa is vacant—come & take it. Our first week’s bill is in, & paid—$70 for feeding, liquoring, lighting and housing of 7 persons. Through these profitable economics I could get rich if we could stay long enough. …Susy would have loved the place.
He was looking forward to meeting Charlemagne Tower and discussing MacVeagh with him. If Livy and Clara and cousin Julie Langdon were in his study on an adjacent hill side, he knew they’d send their love to Mrs. MacVeagh and Miss Margaretta MacVeagh.
[MTP]. Note: See Dec. 19, 1893 entry when Sam met MacVeagh, who at that time was the US consul to Italy. He described MacVeagh then as “very yellow & thin & lively, & has a bald circle the size of a Boston cracker on the crown of his head, but he is wonderfully spry & lively” [Dec. 19, 1893 to Livy]. Sam gives the party size at seven; they were: Himself, Livy, Clara, Jean, Sue Crane, her caretaker Ernst Köppe, and Julia Langdon. Sam wrote in a study on a slope apart from the Villa, which is similar to his practice in other stays and places. In his Aug. 22 to MacVeagh Sam thanked him for “providing me a
friend in Vienna,” which Locher identifies as Charlemagne Tower, minister to Austria-Hungary 1897-1899 .
A guest book at the boardinghouse Bühlegg for this date shows an entry with Sam, Livy, Clara, Jean, Sue Crane and Julia Langdon signing [Locher 7-8 (facsimile)]. Note: It’s not clear why there would have been such a delay to sign in, since the group took possession at the Villa on July 18.
July 28 Wednesday – Sam’s notebook:
July 28. There was no hot weather for breakfast this morning. When we looked out over the lake we found that three great mountain forms along the range that is back from the water were draped down to their shoulders in snow. This royal ermine reveals their rank. They are much higher than Pilatus. We had not supposed that. Pilatus has not a flake on him [NB 42 TS 22].
Andrew Chatto wrote to Sam, letter not extant but referred to in July 30 to Chatto.
July 29 Thursday – In Weggis, Switzerland Sam wrote to Franklin G. Whitmore in Hartford. The Farmington Ave. house was not to be rented; “it is withdrawn from the field.” Sam also sent congratulations for the Whitmore’s making “the rank of grand-parents,” and sent the family’s love, “Also, love to the boys of my set” [MTP].
Sam also wrote to Captain Richard Edgcumbe, his old neighbor on Tedworth Square and discussed plans for a get together: “You’ll be wandering down this way, & you’ll look in on us, & we will paddle around the lake on a steamer & have a smoke & a holiday…” [Sotheby’s catalog, June 19, 2003, Item 86].
July 29. Hired a boat in Lucerne—15 fr a week.
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.