Excerpt: ... her own heart could never be over-lived. She was already, as Mrs. Hawthorne used to say, "tired far into the future." The woman who had written "Uncle Tom" was not to continue a series of equally exciting stories, but she was to bear the burden and heat of much everyday labor with the patience and the rejoicing of all faithful souls. ...Read MoreExcerpt: ... her own heart could never be over-lived. She was already, as Mrs. Hawthorne used to say, "tired far into the future." The woman who had written "Uncle Tom" was not to continue a series of equally exciting stories, but she was to bear the burden and heat of much everyday labor with the patience and the rejoicing of all faithful souls. We are reminded, as we study Mrs. Stowe's life, of Swinburne's noble tribute to Sir Walter Scott after reading his Journals which appeared in full only five or six years ago. He says: "Now that we have before us in full-in all reasonable or desired completeness-the great man's own record of his troubles, his emotions, and his toils, we find it, from the opening to the close, a record, not only of dauntless endurance, but of elastic and joyous heroism.... It is no longer pity that any one may presume to feel for him at the lowest ebb of his fortunes or his life; it is rapture of sympathy, admiration, and applause. 'This was a man.'" The war, the enlistment of her second son, the eldest having already died, filled her heart and mind afresh with new problems and anxieties. She wrote the following hurried note from Hartford in 1862, which gives some idea of her occupations and frame of mind: "I am going to Washington to see the heads of departments myself, and to satisfy myself that I may refer to the Emancipation Proclamation as a reality and a substance, not a fizzle out at the little end of the horn, as I should be sorry to call the attention of my sisters in Europe to any such impotent conclusion.... I mean to have a talk with 'Father Abraham' himself, among others." Mrs. Stowe lost no time, but proceeded to carry out her plan as soon as practicable. Of this visit to Washington she says little in her letters beyond the following meagre words: "It seems to be the opinion here, not only that the President will stand up to his proclamation, but that the Border States will accede to his proposition for emancipation. I...Read Less
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