Henry S. Butler
Phillips Exeter Academy Exeter, N.Y. Dec. 5, 1872
A letter from Father this day received reminds me that I have not written to you this week and I now make haste to do so. I am well and am glad to learn that you are improving. We had a sumptious feast on Thanksgiving day. About fifty of the club remained here and we probably had as good a substitute for the regular home celebration as could be gotten up. I presided as toast-master. The school goes on in its regu- lar way and, though it takes up so much time, it can be but of small interest to one not connected with it. We have bought a [underlined: carpet] second-hand of some fellows going away, so we will have a room both comfort- table and pleasant against the coming win- ter. I am most happy to hear from fa- ther of your continued improvement 0087
and wish you could be as strong as I am. I want you to be quite well against next boating season and my summer vacation, so we can go to that little cave, which you have so beautifully described without ever seeing. In this respect you are similar to the Author of Waverley, who, after writ- ing a delightful description of Mel- rose by moonlight, confessed that he had seen it only by the light of the sun, or the poet Longfellow who saw the Falls of Minnehaha for the first time the season [underline: after] he had given to the world a complete picture of it. However I think the cave will not fall short of your portrait, nor do I believe that it can be described more truthfully by a view of it. This cave is but one of numberless things connected with that beautiful chain of lakes endeared to me by long association. The roar of Mendota has as great a charm for me as had the "Bells of Shandon" for the poor wandering priest.
[underlined: Sunday]. I wrote this letter during the week but it has hung on till another Sabbath. In the meanwhile I have received a very kind present from you -the note-paper, which will be of great use to me and for which I express my thanks. Our minister - the Rev. Mr Street has just returned fro Europe where he has been for six months recruiting. He was on board the Botaira which came near being wreck ed itself and took the survivers from a vessel which had foundered. Mark Twain was on board and has written a letter on it. Mr. Street gave a description of it in church Love to my sisters and to Father. Your Loving Son, Henry S. Butler.
 John Muir, Esq.
I enclose you this letter. persuaded you will like to see how Henry is getting on. His report from the head of the school is at hand. The highest average of any one in his class of 57 is 94 Henry's average is 92. My wife [underlined: is] better. - I go home to night J. D. Butler
Burlington Jany. 15 
Exeter, N. H.
1872 Dec 5
Original letter dimensions: 25 x 39 cm.
Butler, Henry S., "Letter from Henry S. Butler to [Mrs. Butler], 1872 Dec 5." (1872). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 1495.
Reel 02, Image 0987
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