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[Written up left side: D.C. French SC.] Miss Wh [envelope torn] Mount Vernon [paper torn] Boston, Mass.
[Round postmark on back of envelope: 9-30-81 8 A]
Sept. 29, 1881
My dear Miss Whitney
I learned, on returning from a journey two weeks ago, that unconsciously I had entered the lists against you. I must confess that I felt like withdrawing, fearing the effect, that competitions often have, of breaking in upon the pleasant relations of the competitors. It was, however, too late to retire & I dismissed the question, earnestly hoping that nothing would occur to divide us.
I was afterwards reminded, of, what I had for the moment forgotten, that you had made a bust of Garrison, which Mr. L.J. Garrison said was simply perfect as a likeness; then I exclaimed, "Why don't they give
Miss Whitney the commission?" I sincerely wish they would, but it is also too late to hope for that.
This morning comes a letter from Mr Garrison saying that you, with a generosity, that would be surprising if it were not so characteristic, wishes me to have a cast of your bust of Garrison to help me, if I cared for it. I do not know how to thank you & I know not what to say. I think there is no other sculptor in the world, who would have made such an offer. That it would help me is so apparent that it is useless to say so; it would be the first thing I should secure were I free to choose as I pleased. It seems to me, however, that this advantage that you have is one to which you are fairly entitled & that you should reap the benefits of it, & I hesitate about accepting your generous offer. It
had never entered my mind that I could use your work in any way, except as I could carry an impression from seeing it at a distance. I had, however, intended to ask you for one or two of the sizes.
I shall come to see you if I may, when I next go to Boston & meanwhile I shall endeavor to decide whether it would be fair for me to avail myself of your kindness. At least I thank you very much
Very sincerely yours
Dan. C. French.
French, Daniel Chester and Wellesley College Archives, "Letter from Daniel Chester French, Concord, Massachusetts, to Anne Whitney, 1881 September 29" (1881). Papers of Anne Whitney (MSS.4): Correspondence. 697.