Constance Fenimore Woolson Letter about W. D. Howells

Excerpt from a letter from Woolson the her nephew Samuel Mather, dated April 17, 1890 from Cairo. [Contributed by Sharon Dean]

Somebody has taken the pains to send me, very carefully directed, a N.Y. Evening Post, with containing a savage attack upon Jupiter Lights; as the Post & the Nation are the same, the article will go into the Nation also, I suppose. I seldom see reviews of my books, friendly or unfriendly; & I do'nt much care about them--because they are not sincere. But this Post attack touched me a little, because I think it may come--in spirit--from Mr. Howells, who, strange to say, has turned from a friend to an enemy. He is powerful; & he is on the spot; & he dislikes with a vengeance! When he does dislike. It is the one painful spot in my literary life, because I used to like him so much, & trust him. I usually try not to think of him; it is only when something occurs unexpectedly--like this arrival of the Post--that my mind goes back to the subject.

For the world is wide and there is room for all; the best courage is to do one's best as bravely as one can, & let the rest go.

Letter reproduced by permission of The Mather Family Papers, MS 3735 Container 23 Folder 7. Western Reserve
Historical Society Library, Cleveland, Ohio, Further reproduction is permissible only with written permission
from the Western Reserve Historical Society.

The Howells Society is grateful to the WRHS for permission to post this excerpt.