Jervis McEntee Diaries

Monday February 22, 1886

Jervis McEntee Diary Entry, February 22, 1886, from the Jervis McEntee papers, 1850-1905, in the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution

Monday, Feb 22, 1886 A fine invigorating morning. I resolved to stay up and have a good walk. Shortly after breakfast Downing and Grant went off ice boating. I started over the hills and came out on the old Steep Rocks road on the plateau near the late slide which I saw today for the first time. It was more extensive than I had imagined. A great number of men and horses were at work on the ice filling the ice house above Steep Rocks and ice boats were flitting about. I saw Chris Leonard at work getting out rocks for a dock crib and went up and talked with him. In 1868 he was a little red headed urchin at Fishkill when we had the work there building the Hudson River Rail Road. I got on the ice there and seeing an ice boat close in shore I went to it and found Downing was sailing it. Van Deusen (Columbus son) lent me his overcoat, gloves and cap and Downing took me over the river on the ice boat and I steered her back and went over to the Strand where I attended to some affairs and had my hair cut and reached home at 1 o'clock having had a delightful morning. Going through the woods near the Roatina I was struck with the beauty of the place and indeed strongly impressed with the charm and freshness of the morning. I forgot that just here my dear Gertrude and I came and got some ferns the last time she every collected any, and I have never passed here since without thinking of her until today; but after I had gone on a short distance, in the midst of entirely other thoughts I suddenly had a strong and vivid impression of her and I wondered if her sweet spirit or some indescribable influence from her did not accompany me through this forest nook sanctified by her having gone there with me. At 2 o'clock Tom brought up the horses and drove Sara and me up to Kingston to make some calls. We went to Genl. Sharpes but Mrs. Sharpe excused herself, then called on Mrs. Osterhondt, Mrs Kate Davis, who was not in, Miss Kitty Forsyth, the others not being at home and as we were coming out from there met Mrs. Kate Davis who got into the wagon with us and we went and called on the Gorman sisters, daughters of Dr. Gorman and sisters of "Bob" Gorman. They are elderly ladies and strongly resemble "Bob". They had a very good portrait of Dr. Gorman at 49 years of age by the elder Vanderlyn. We made a long call there then called on Mrs. John Forsyth and parting with Mrs. David there drove down to call on Mrs. Cornell but she was not at home. We also called on Mrs. Washburne the wife of the Episcopal minister. After dinner I walked up to the station and came down in the 7.25 train. Downing had not get back from his ice boating when I left.

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