[Boston—Tuesday, 28 July 1863]

July 28th George William Curtis has done at least one great good work. He has by a gentle but continuously brave pressure transformed the Harper’s Weekly which was semi-Secession into an anti-slavery and Republican journal. The last issue is covered with pictures as well as words which tend to ameliorate the condition of the colored race. Mr Curtis’s own house at Staten Island has been threatened by the mob therefore his wife and children came last week to New England. I fear the death of Col. Shaw, her brother, commanding the 54th Mass. (colored infantry) will induce them to return home. His death is one of our severest strokes.

I am deeply interested in Kinglake’s history of the Crimea. The bravery and truth of the writer are amazing even in an Englishman. I wonder and admire. Yet more than even by these qualities I am astonished at the noble confidence he places in England. “She will bear to hear the truth” he seems to say “and shall one be wanting who will dare to speak it.” Therefore he lays a keen edged axe at the root of the tree, there is nothing spared nor any body there is much looking face to face in it. I should think it far easier to die than to live having written so. Indeed this man imposed a terrible task upon himself when he attempted to talk for posterity of his brothers and countrymen!

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