Jervis McEntee Diaries

Tuesday July 20, 1875

Jervis McEntee Diary Entry, Tuesday, July 20, 1875, from the Jervis McEntee papers, 1850-1905, in the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution

We left home Friday July 9 on a visit to Booth and his wife at Cos Cob and remained there until Friday 16th having had a delightful visit. One day we went fishing and on my birth day we had a pic nic on Field Point a beautiful point running out into the Sound. We had delightful drives about the country which is very pleasant and altogether enjoyed ourselves greatly. Booth is more cheerful than he used to be, is very fond of his home and has developed a love for a quiet domestic life which I hardly looked for in him. He has given up all his property and really had barely money enough to pay his daily expenses until October when he begins an engagement in N.Y. He has suffered from a lack of business talent and a too ready trust in men. Pays extravagantly for everything he buys and has not valued money. I think he has grown wiser and more careful and will henceforth look more carefully after his interests. He is afraid of people, is easily rebuffed being very sensitive or I have no doubt he could have advised with some one who could have saved him but from conversations I had with him I saw how difficult it would be for him to ask assistance from any one even in business. I came away feeling much better acquainted with him than before. I had my "October in the Kaatskills" sent up to Mrs Booth to pay the thousand dollar note I owe him and the interest ($280 4 years to June 18th) with the understanding that as soon as I am able I am to offer him the thousand dollars in money and he may accept it or keep the picture as he chooses. We left in a rain and when we arrived in N.Y. I went to see John Platt the assignee of his estate in reference to an appraisement of his bust of Michaelangelo, two bronze statuettes Don Quixote and Miss T[?] his theatrical engravings and his Sistine Chapel engraving all of which I valued at $200. Platt did not seem inclined to take my valuation at first but finally concluded to if I would make a list of them and make affidavit to them. I have today written to Booth about my interview with Platt. We went to Vauxs Friday afternoon and remained there until Monday when we came home. We found three of Bowyers friends there, John Olmstead, D[?] & Weld. They went away Saturday morning and with them Downing who had been invited on a yacht cruise for two weeks. Irving Putnam came up that afternoon in his canoe and later Fred Stedman so that the house was pretty full, but Mary bore it all pleasantly and they had a good time. I very much admire Marys character. She has grown into a noble woman, cheerful, helpful and unselfish. At home I found a letter from Whittredge telling me of the birth of a daughter and his trip to N.Y. on Art matters connected with the Centennial. Have written to him today. Yesterday and today have been like some of the days I remember last summer, more like the early Autumn than the summer. My father drove me out on the Marbletown road as far as Genl M[?] old place on the rocks and after landing me on the opposite side of the creek I walked up as far as the Marbletown ford where I met him again. He waited while I walked half a mile above. I was in hopes of finding some nice view to paint but did not. It was a windy day and the landscape did not look interesting. We came home by Lucas' turnpike.

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