"The Americans are saying, by the way, that they have discovered a Rudyard Kipling of their own. This is Mr. Richard Harding Davis, a volume of whose stories has been published this week by Mr. Osgood. Mr. Davis is only twenty-six, was for sometime on the staff of the New York Evening Sun. He is now the editor of Harper's Weekly."
That is me. I have also a mother and sister who once went to London and what do you think they first went to see, in London, mind you. They got into a four wheeler and they said "cabby drive as fast as you can," not knowing that four wheelers never go faster than a dead march--" to--" where do you think? St. Paul's, the Temple, the Abbey, their lodgings, the Houses of Parliament--the Pavilion Music Hall--the Tower--no to none of these--"To the Post Office." That is what my mother and sister did! After this when they hint that they would like to go again and say "these muffins are not English muffins" and "do you remember the little Inn at Chester, ah, those were happy days," I will say, "And do you remember the Post Office in Edinburgh and London. We have none such in America." And as they only go abroad to get letters they will hereafter go to Rittenhouse Square and I will write letters to them from London. All this shows that a simple hurriedly written letter from Richard Harding Davis is of more value than all the show places of London. It makes me quite PROUD. And so does this:
"`Gallegher' is as good as anything of Bret Harte's, although it is in Mr. Davis's own vein, not in the borrowed vein of Bret Harte or anybody else. `The Cynical Miss Catherwaight' is very good, too, and `Mr. Raegen' is still better."
But on the other hand, it makes me tired, and so does this:
"`The Other Woman' is a story which offends good taste in more than one way. It is a blunder to have written it, a greater blunder to have published it, and a greater blunder STILL to have republished it."
I suppose now that Dad has crossed with Prince George and Nora has seen the Emperor, that you will be proud too. But you will be prouder of your darling boy Charles, even though he does get wiped out at Seabright next week and you will be even prouder when he writes great stories for The Evening Sun.
I had a great day at the game and going there and coming back. I met a great many old football men and almost all of them spoke of the "Out of the Game" story. Cumnock, Camp, Poe, Terry and lots more whose names mean nothing to you, so ignorant are you, were there and we had long talks. I went to see Cleveland yesterday about a thing of which I have thought much and talked less and that was going into politics in this country. To say he discouraged me in so doing would be saying the rain is wet. He seemed to think breaking stones as a means of getting fame and fortune was quicker and more genteel. I also saw her and the BABY. She explained why she had not written you and also incidentally why she HAD written Childs. I do not know as what Cleveland said made much impression upon me--although I found out what I could expect from him--that is nothing here but apparently a place abroad if I wanted it. But he thought Congress was perfectly feasible but the greatest folly to go there. DICK.
CHAPTER V FIRST TRAVEL ARTICLES