« AnteriorContinuar »
2447 to England for more than twenty consecutive months.
During such absences I used to receive the money needed for the house expenses, and always rendered the account of my expenditures to Mr. Forrest on his return. Until the last occasion, he invariably handed me back the account without looking at it, and appeared quite satisfied. Mr. Forrest had had his controversy with Mr. Macready in England, during the said visit, and on his return exhibited excessive ill-temper. He
took the account on that occasion, and it was unsatisfac2448 tory, as I learned, from hearing him storming and speaking violently about it to my sister ; and he went to Bos
' ton, where he had a professional engagement, in great anger, without speaking to me on the subject. The acacount was certainly imperfect, and I had used about three hundred dollars of his money for my own purposes, yet I was equally astonished and distressed at his violence, having conducted matters to the best of my ability, and not having taken any liberty to which an objection could have been reasonably anticipated; Mr. Forrest being well aware that from the weak state
of my health during the greater portion of his stay 2449 abroad I was unable to earn the amount of money
usually acquired by me from giving lessons in music. In my perplexity I conferred with Mr. Lawson, Mr. Forrest's particular friend and business agent; Mr. Lawson said he could find no fault with me, but on the contrary, observed that if he had a sister-in-law residing with him and rendering the same services, he would be happy to make her an allowance for her dress, and to preclude the necessity of her teaching music, which
I had done for five years. It was some weeks before I 2450 succeeded in having a conversation with Mr. Forrest,
the only one I ever had with bim by myself; he disagreed with me in many things, but still our interview closed pleasantly. Mr. Forrest has been paid all his claims on the accounts, except one hundred dollars, which is yet due. I never understood that he wished me to leave his house, but the contrary, still I saw fit to leave at the time before stated, when I went to board with my friend, Mrs. Caroline M. Kirkland, and I have never since resided with Mr. Forrest. On further consultation with Mr. Lawson, after my interview with Mr. Forrest, he disapproved of 2451 the course I had taken in that interview, and said that I ought to have acknowledged myself in the wrong, whether I was so or not, and he added that the love of money was becoming a disease with Mr. Forrest. Mr. Lawson further advised that the cause of the difference between Mr. Forrest and myself should not be inentioned to any one, nor even the difference itself, if it could possibly be avoided ; in which last idea both Mrs. Forrest and I fully concurred, knowing that if Mr. Forrest considered himself pledged to any course he would never retract; and we both resolved that nothing should be said or done which it would be unpleasant for him to remember, when, as we hoped, his better feelings should return. My child was born on the 4th of June, 2452 1847 ; my husband and myself visited Mr. Forrest by invitation, and dined with him and my sister and Mr. Parke Godwin, on the 18th of April, 1847. Mr. Forrest treated us with the utmost cordiality, and it was understood by all the company that the dinner was expressly given by him, and that we were all invited by him. I never heard of Mr. Forrest's being in any way averse to me until November, 1848, when my sister informed me that Mr. Forrest had expressed himself angrily about
I have never had any quarrel or dispute with him, or had an angry word with him until he called at our 2453 house in Sixteenth street, in February, 1850). I have seen the copy of an affidavit made by Mr. Forrest in this action, before Thomas S. Sommers, Commissioner of Deeds, on the fifteenth of November last. I am sure that Mr. Forrest has no reason to believe, nor can I
think that he does believe me to be, in any respect or degree, the character he has described. The first extract
given by Mr. Forrest is as follows: 2454
:6 Willis' House, May 8th. “Mrs. Willis and I are consoling ourselves that they “are both boys, and must expect women to deceive "them all their lives."
This arose from the following circumstances. Early in May, 1848, I called to inquire after the health of Mrs.
Willis, and was informed of the birth of a fine boy, 2455 who, however, was actually perishing of hunger. Mrs.
Willis being unable to nourish him, and the whole family being employed in efforts, so far useless, to find a proper substitute, I immediately offered to nourish the child myself, and did so for some days, until a nurse was found. Mrs. Willis' child being very weak, some management was necessary with him, and to induce my child to draw nourishment from Mrs. Willis, in order to restore to her the power of sustaining her own infant, an artifice was practised upon him with but partial and
temporary success. I succeeded in saving the life of 2456 my friend's child, which gave me infinite pleasure, and
knowing my sister to be in very low spirits, wrote her the liveliest letter possible, and in the extract given made allusion to the artifice so practised upon the children.
The second extract is as follows:
“When I went home this evening, the C.'s came to “see me, awfully disappointed that you will not return
“ till so late. It's all settled about Lizzie, Dr. Hull, 2457 “ &c., &c.”
This extract is unintelligible to me; and I do not believe that Mr. Forrest has, or that I ever wrote such a letter. I know no one to whom I could have alluded by the initial given ; I might have written about its being all settled that “ Lizzie,” that is to say, Miss Eliza
beth Gray, the daughter of Dr. Gray, a highly respect-
2458 “ Dear Catten, things are changed since I wrote you “from R. street, that she had that trick, and added, that “ if all tales were true, the original wanted rather a big “ frame just now.”
I think this must be misrecited; the words are not accurately given; but I did write something resembling
; this; its subject is as follows: When we lived in Reade street, in 1839, some of us taught my little sister Virginia, before going to bed, to bid good night to Mrs. Forrest's portrait, as I had previously done in England.
2459 Just before the birth of Mrs. Forrest's second child, I wrote to her mentioning this ; the allusion to the size of the original, was meant as an inquiry in reference to the birth which I had heard was expected. Again, in 1848, I wrote something like this third extract, reciting my letter of 1839, in connection with a statement that my only little boy-now, in 1848—was in the habit of saluting this same picture of his aunt, in the evening. The fourth extract is as follows:
Speyer has just been here, and Frank opportunely 2460 “ cleared out. He says I have behaved very badly"devilish awkward to tell him how badly. He has not “ heard that I was married within a month of his de"parture. Well, least said soonest mended. ,
He is dying to see you, and was quite flattered at your writing out a paragraph about him. He has changed “ his mind, and is going to stay here some months. He “says he wishes he had taken F. with him.”
“Frank” and “F.” mean my husband; the other person named is a highly respectable gentleman ; it was said he was a suitor of mine, before my marriage. I
do not believe that I ever wrote precisely as stated in 2461 this extract, or to the like effect, although it is possible
that Mr. Voorhies may have written so in a letter of mine. Mrs. Forrest never wrote any thing about this gentleman, to my knowledge or belief. The word must be "cutting,” not " writing.” She cut out of a news
“ paper a complimentary article about him, and sent it to me. He had been engaged in the Mexican war, and Mr. and Mrs. Forrest, and myself, took considerable interest in his adventures.
The sixth extract is not true. I did not write as
therein recited. I once wrote to my sister, something 2462 like it. I wrote that I desired to consult Mr. Magoon,
a clergyman, for whom I then had a high esteem. I did not conceal his name, but wrote it out at length. The seventh extract is as follows:
Wednesday, May 17th. Damned bad marriages seem to be the order of the day in our family; Frank “never reads any of your letters. I do wish you would
come home; I am so tired of everything and every
body." 2463 At the time Mr. and Mrs. Forrest were married, my
mother's step-father observed, in reference to Mr. Forrest, “ handsome enough man, but damned bad marriage,” which speech was repeated to Mr. Forrest, who laughed about it, and often repeated it himself, in reference to improvident marriages, saying, "there's another damned bad marriage.” This extract was in reply to a letter of my sister's, written upon the anniversary of our mother's marriage to our father, whose circumstances were much inferior to her own. In allusion to that marriage, and to my own, which was to a man without property, I wrote playfully, as recited, quoting the words Mr. Forrest so habitually used, and inserting the quotation marks.
As to the extract in these words: