[Boston—Monday, 5 December 1870]

Monday. Dec. 5. Whittier dropped down this morning to breakfast. He seems remarkably well. We did not have any very serious talk, until he became interested about our Coffee Room in which he believes and to which he gave us his “good speed”. He promises to come round there to see how we get on. He is delighted with J.’s “Whispering Galley” and his talk about that opened up a fund of anecdote. He was charmed too with the vision of the vessels in the bay this morning. They were covered with opaline lights. He says it is very unhealthy in the country now; there are fevers everywhere and we ought to be grateful who only have colds. Celia Thaxter turned in on her last visit at his house and taught Lissie his niece (“who is skipper now” he says, “his housekeeper having gone away”) how to cook. She understands all about it and it was great fun he says to see her do it.

William Greene Jr. came in to call afterward. A fair fine youth. He finds the technological school not quite after his taste but it is much after his father’s he says which explains all.

Whittier went down town with J. & was told there of his having concluded to retire now from business. “It is the wisest thing thee ever did in thy life,” he said cheerily. Dear Whittier! He is such a brave encouraging presence to have about!

But now three cheers for the Coffee.

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