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Autograph for Miss L. Jewett from Nathaniel Hawthorne, 1850

Date: 1850

Type: Letter

Categories: , ,


This note came into the archives as part of our Autograph Edition of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s works. The “fourteen-mile-long story” that Hawthorne references is The Scarlet Letter. In February of 1850 Hawthorne delivered the last pages of the novel to his publisher, as such he is being quite honest when he says he will soon be finishing a book.


Autograph for Miss L. Jewett
Transcribed by W.H. Demick

Salem. Feb 4th, 1850

I should here have for myself
the pleasure of complying with
Miss Jewett’s request for an
autograph, lest I had soon very
much enjoyed in finishing a
book – one end of which was
already in press in Boston, while
the other was still in my brain
here in Salem, whence it ap-
pears that the story (horrible to think)
is no less than fourteen miles
Miss Jewett will readily ex-
cuse any lack of grace in my
autography, when she learns
that I write this note with the
same worn-out steel pen that
served me to write the latter
portion of the above-mentioned
fourteen-mile-long story.
Very truly,
+ most Respectfully
Nathl Hawthorne
Miss L. Jewett,