I found many letters awaiting me. One from dear Downing full of affection and tenderness. My pictures the "Solitaire" the "First Shave" and the "Autumn Song" which I gave to Gertrude on the 20th anniversary of our marriage had arrived. I opened the box and hung them in the parlor and am very pleased to have them here because the two were painted from Gertrude. Poor Mrs. Purinton died this morning after the most prolonged and terrible suffering. Gertrude used to visit her and pitied her so sincerely in her sufferings and thinking of her in connection with her painful death this morning I was very thankful that she had been spared so agonizing an experience. The newspapers are full of Taylors death and in the Tribune are communications from Stedman & Stoddard. I wonder if poor Dick does not think of some of his unkindnesses, of the head but not of the heart. I wrote to Reid today about Taylor but privately. I also wrote to Gussie, a note to Mead[?] about pictures, to Col. Laurence about my beaver skins and to Mary urging her and Calvert to come up for Christmas. Gertrude (Tula) opened the piano and played some plaintive airs this evening. I had not heard the piano before since Gertrudes death and it entirely overcame me. Now as we make our Christmas preparations she is not out of my mind one moment. How active she would have been in all these things and how she would have led in every thing. I try to do just what she would have liked to do and think of her in connection with every thing I undertake.