January 16 Tuesday – At 30 Wellington Court in London, England Sam wrote to Frank Bliss.
“Yes date the portrait 1900; & if it comes from the engraver clean & nice,—& I hope it will—send it to Mr. Rogers with my best compliments.”
Sam questioned Bliss’ qualification, and the “bulk of the volumes” he was “entitled to copyright (royalty) on”—were there any he was not entitled to royalty on? Did Bliss mean the Harper books? If so, he wanted Bliss to pay those directly to him, not through Harpers, whom he called “those bankrupts,” even should an injunction be needed.
You are having a tough long job, & are fighting it through with good grit, & I wish I did not have to be a hindrance, I would rather be a help if I could. I will touch as lightly as I can. You say you can stand one or two thousand dollars. All right, I will manage with that. By Whitmore’s account I owe the city about a thousand dollars. (for asphalting). Suppose you go to the authorities & assume that debt for me. Pay it in cash if they require it; otherwise get them to wait as long as you please. If you offer interest I don’t see why they should hurry you. …
I want to make things as easy for you as I can. Keep me cheered up with reports of your progress— London is depressing, in these days of fog & rain & influenza & war [MTP]. Note: Harper & Brothers failed in 1899 and J.P. Morgan took over the firm and put Colonel George Harvey in as manager.
Samuel S. McClure wrote, following up his prior letters offering Sam “editor-in-chief” of a proposed new magazine. “It seems clear enough to me that there will under no circumstances, be anything in the relationship that will cause you the least anxiety or loss of freedom.” He felt that Sam would be able to draw in big names for submissions easier than he would [MTP].
January 17 Wednesday – Jonas Henrick Kellgren Osteopath, billed £37.16.0 for the first half of January, Jan. 16 & 17, 1900 included, for Livy and Jean’s treatments [1900 Financial file MTP].
January 18 Thursday – At 30 Wellington Court in London, England Sam wrote a postcard and a letter to Poultney Bigelow (now in Chelsea, London) forwarding Harpers’ Jan. 6 referral of a request by J. Boyd Douglass. Sam asked Bigelow, “Will you transact this business for me?” Sam noted on the top margin about Harpers: “They retire from the position of helping me own my dramatic rights” [MTP].
January 19 Friday – Sam also wrote to Henry Ferguson.
I tried to get that new book out of the Harpers’s hands, but you will see by the Enclosed [HHR’s of Jan.
9, top of] that they say it is in press—& therefore too late.
However, there are two volumes—the shipwreck [Hornet, 1866] is to be in the second one, I believe; so your emendations will reach New York plenty early enough, I have no doubt. They go by tomorrow’s steamer.
I followed your excisions in every case [MTP]. Note: the essay, “My Debut as a Literary Person,” was used as the title piece in the 1903 My Debut as a Literary Person and Essays and Other Stories.
Livy, Clara and Jean traveled to Hindhead, England, and took rooms at the “Royal Huts,” which had been prepared for them. Livy wrote of their arrival and of this first night in her Jan. 20 to Sam [MTP]. Note: Hindhead is in Surrey some 43 miles from London, with the highest point 900 feet above sea level; the purpose of the trip is unknown, but it may have involved an examination or treatments for Jean, perhaps by another osteopath.
January 20 Saturday – From the Royal Huts in Hindhead, England, Livy wrote to “Youth dear”:
SLC used mourning border for most letters from Susy’s death on, then from Livy’s death on.