Jervis McEntee Diaries

Sunday February 7, 1875

Jervis McEntee Diary Entry, Sunday, February 7, 1875, from the Jervis McEntee papers, 1850-1905, in the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution

Yesterday morning went to Goupil's to see Boughton's picture of the "Heir Presumptive." It has all of Boughton's excellence but I think it is lifeless in action and spread over too much canvas, besides there is an inclination to mannerism in modeling his flesh and everything else in color by plastering it on so thick. There was also there a very clever picture by "Kamerer" a Dutch watering place, sparkling and realistic but not beautiful. Spent an hour in the Water Color collection where there are many good things which however I only looked at hastily. Mr. Hurlburt of Cleveland called. Church spent some time with me and spoke in praise of my figures. Mrs. Holt called while Eastman Johnson was here but came back again shortly after with her sister in law and Miss Norton. They made a long call and she invited me to dine with them on Thursday. Mr. Deforest called to see my pictures and I rode with him up to his house where I dined with Mr. and Mrs. Church and Mr. & Mrs. Harris the latter author of Rutledge and seemingly an interesting woman. From there Church, Lockwood De Forest and I went to the Century monthly meeting. There was a crowd there. Saw Bayard Taylor for the first time since his return from Europe, and had a talk with him, Whitelaw Reid and Whipple of Boston. Mr. Whipple was very complementary to me concerning my pictures and said he could always know them even when out of my usual style, in proof of which he knew my figure picture in the gallery (Burning the Christmas Greens") although he did not know I painted figures and had never seen one of mine before. I thought that showed vastly more appreciation than to say as some did "that reminds me of Boughton" whose manner and mine are so widely different. It was a good opportunity for me to see a great many people who did not know I was in town. I staid there until after 1 o'clock. Dined with the Taylors at half past one. It was very cold and I walked up. Had a delightfully social time as I always do and remained to tea. Came home at half past nine and wrote to Gerturde. Was delighted to find the Taylors so happy and cheerful. Taylor is making money lecturing and moreover sees that his old popularity has returned. It was as good as being successful myself. Taylor asked Mr. Whipple last night what he thought of the Beecher Tilton case. I wish I could state just what he said, but it was so earnest and so vigorous and so based on a faith in what is best in humanity that it thrilled me. He scouted the idea of Beecher's guilt as I do. We had a hot talk on it at Mr Deforests. I think the old orthodox all go against Beecher and Eastman Johnson, Platt and I got on it again at the Century. They don't believe him guilty of adultery but think there is some thing wrong. I believe him an innocent man and the victim of a d - d conspiracy whatever verdict the jury renders.

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