Sunday, March 18, 2012

Marlene to Charley-Netherlands

October 1867
Dear Charley-What a pleasant surprise to receive the photo carte of you in the post. it is a most agreeable photograph. I have decided to respond in kind by sending you a photo of myself taken while in Switzerland. our plan was to travel to the Netherlands to consult with the royal family, but the trip was cancelled because of an avalance in Switzerland which buried the railroad racks. By the time we were rescued from the train, we had to return to the studio in Paris as we have (I have) many dresses to stitch before the holiday season begins. I am most anxious to get back to the investigation of the cupboard's contents but must get all the sewing finished first. Marlene

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Charley to Marlene: Canada

June 1867

Dear Marlene,
The trip to Cuba was a smashing success with a less than smashing finale!  Henry and I were afforded a grand tour of Cuba and he made some quite promising sketches.  He was so taken with the landscape that he changed his plans and remained in Cuba.  Nicaise and I continued on to Boston where we originally planned to return home after a short stay, but I took ill shortly after we put into port.  A most capable physician determined it was, as I secretly feared, the fever.  The doctor said he was most surprised at my recovery and determined it must have been due to my prior robust health.  Nicaise returned to England with haste to give word to Mary and to allay her fears.  She came as soon as the news reached her, but by the time she arrived I was convalescing most satisfactorily.  This week the weather warmed and Mary and I travelled to Prince Edward Island for extended rest and rejuvenation.  We are taking the ocean air in daily, which is most agreeable.  Mary convinced me to have a photo carte made which I send to thee most humbly.  She urged me to rest in a chair for the event, but as you can see I prevailed the day!  Mary brought your news from Switzerland and I am most anxious to hear of the cabinet!  Please use caution and send word as soon as you discover the contents!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Marlene to Charley: Switzerland

Switzerland, September 1866

Dear Charley
Msr and I have traveled to the rural valleys of Switzerland to see the yarns produced by the Spoerry brothers-yarns that can “provide textile creations with a unique soul”. I am unsure why Msr. wanted me to accompany him when there is so much work to be done in the design studio. I fear that Msr. is “keeping an eye on me”. Before we left, I was once again trying the key in various cupboards and to my surprise one of them opened! Then I heard the sound of approaching footsteps and I had to hurriedly close and lock the cupboard. I barely managed to do it before he entered the room. He looked at me in a menacing and suspicious way-but I am determined to find out what is in the cupboard.