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Copy of letter written by Eastman Johnson in Düsseldorf, Germany, in 1851 where he was studying when he was 26 years old, to Miss Charlotte Child, Augusta, Maine

Düsseldorf, March 25 1851.

My dear Charlotte:

Yours of Nov. 17th 1849 is rec'd and I hasten to reply - I have also to acknowledge the receipt this day of another of Feb. 19, 1851 from you and Hannah. I find this all right, and as it should be, that you do as you would be done by, and that your resentful and revengeful feelings which you for a time nourished did not triumph but were at last overcome by a kindly and forgiving spirit. There is every reason why this should prevail, for I have been the suffering party - You complain, and feel your case a hard one, but think of mine, and consider what I must have undergone in comparison, in the consciousness of my obligation and ingratitude, in having failed for so long a time to reply to your letters - Let this not be your fault, for you have no conception of the remorse you can bring down upon yourself by so doing - I have felt it much in my time. I particularly in this instance in its fullest force. I have born up as well as I could (and I think I can endure as much in this way as another) till the reception today of yours and Hannah's of the 19 ult. rendered it insupportable, and I resolved to sweep away the weight on my conscience and which has bowed down my good name in the minds of those where I would fain it should still flourish as fresh and green as in the days of old - Speaking of days of old, what a vista opens upon my memory, half pleasant, half unpleasant, in those years of my life that were passed in Augusta (now a city, with its Mayor), but as vague almost as my dreams, with the exception of some few points of reality which are still as palpable to my mind's eye as mortality need be, such as the girls to whom I write etc. (and this I take it you will consider no reflection on your being also quite as spiritual as you need be) This may be owing to the five years that have elapsed since I last left there, and its present remoteness, with the difference of scene, life, circumstances, etc. in which I now find myself placed - But we will let that go for the present. You would probably prefer to know what the difference is - Let me however first thank you for your kind remembrance of me in my wanderings in far off and strange lands and for sending a second letter in search of me after the first had met with such an apparent ill return and be assured how heartily I appreciate your constant regard and especially your continued confidence in mine which I trust you will have no occasion to diminish.

Pray write me soon again - It is a delightful thing to hear now and then from my old home direct, and have the names of acquaintances and companions freshly brot. up to me and an image of the little world as it still goes on there with its various changes, some sad and others pleasant in all of which I feel much interested - Some are married - Very naturally - You girls continue apparently obstina and dont give me to understand that there is anything of the sort going on there - I am prepared however any day for another story - 

Chas. Lambard and the pretty Fanny Johnson I understand have some time since consummated matters, and are probably now in the jogging pace of married life. What a distance ahead of me - when I shall come to this, is, I fancy as utterly a matter of conjecture as can possibly be, especially if I wait for such a pretty girl to fall in Love with me as Chas. has got - Perhaps you imagine it no impossibilit that I should at last bring home a dutch girl. Not at all. I fall back upon "down east" in preference,which according to my experience is the place for saw-logs and pretty girls of all the places in the world.
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