New Canaan, Connecticut
27. October. 1927
Dear Margaret—dear! Oh, yes, nothing is wrong.
Everything is very very right and heavenly. You must have had a letter
soon after this last brief line which is just here.
If there was delay it was only after getting those
two supreme letters of yours—with all
of you in them. It was like passing through an ordination. Meaning so
much that I was rather up and off and away. And yet all the while with a
strange inner serenity and a calm like a long sigh of relief. Have no
fear, beloved soul!
I am as well as possible and happy too.
You see how nice my dear Jack of Hearts1
is! I am sure you will find him helpful and I believe he will find you
so too. Get him to recommend your going to Quebec and Montreal first.
I was in New York to-day securing transportation to
North Carolina.2 I leave here on
the 2nd and read at the University of N.C. at Chapel Hill on the third.
I will send you my itinerary. My surest address will be c/o Professor
A.J. Armstrong3, Waco, Texas. He
is my manager. I have made up my program and all [sic] getting all
read[y] to start. All new country to me. Quite an adventure. I dread
leaving New Canaan, but one must have faith and cultivate a stout heart.
Bless you ever
Gibbon (see Letter 7 n.3). [back]
See Letters 4
n.2 and Letters 25-38. [back]
Armstrong (1873-1954), the Chariman of the Department of English at
Baylor University in Waco, Texas from 1912 to 1942, is remembered
primarily for the collection of materials related to Robert and
Elizabeth Barrett Browning that now forms the nucleus of the
Armstrong Browning Library at Baylor. Armstrong began collecting
Browning material before the First World War, and in 1918 the
University alloted space ("The Browning Room") in the
Carroll Library for his collection, which by the mid-nineteen
twenties included numerous manuscripts, first editions, Robert
Wiedemann Barrett Browning’s Portrait of
[Robert] Browning and three American-made stained glass
windows illustrating "The Pied Piper," "The Guardian
Angel," and "How They Brought the Good News from Ghent to
Aix" (see Letter 36). In December 1927, Armstrong published an
account of his Browning collection as the first monograph in the
Baylor University Browning Interests series. Armstrong is also
remembered for "providing central Texas with artistic and
cultural and intellectual influences from
other. . . parts of the world" by "promot[ing]
appearances by. . . prominent poets, artists and
other outstanding personalities," including Robert Frost,
Vachel Lindsay, Amy Lowell and Carl Sandburg (Jack Herring, "‘A
Local Habitation’: the Brownings at Baylor," Browning
Society Notes 10.1 , 8.) See Lois Smith Douglas, Through
Heaven’s Back Door: a Biography of A. Joseph Armstrong (Waco,
Texas: Baylor UP, 1951). [back]