430 West 119th Street,
New York, N. Y.,
April 1, 1925.
Dear Campbell Cousins:
This seems to be a most appropriate day for me to be attending to my correspondence. My letters are always a surprise, although not always a delightful one.
A couple of weeks ago I received a letter from my brother Roswell addressing me as "Dear Campbell Cousin". Evidently with the true Bostonian aloofness he reuses to make the horrible admission that I am his brother. But I know why it is. He's jealous that I have some hair on the top of my head. If we stand alongside each other with our heads uncovered in a public place he's simply embarrassed to tears. Don't worry, though, about his losing his hair. He lost it long before he was married - in fact way back in the days when he was a freshman at college. It must have been due to over-study (?) .
However, he asked me to write a letter to my cousins and not a dissertation on hair. When one writes to one's cousins, what should one write? What one has been doing? That's just a bit risky.
Last week a baritone from New York and I gave a concert in Hornell, New York. Several of my relatives were there including my father, sister and brother-in-law; also - a friend of mine came on from Buffalo to attend the concert. Now, you wouldn't jump at a conclusion like that - I didn't say it was a young lady friend! The following morning we all rode back to Elmira in my father's new car. Say, by the way, I suppose you all know that I have a new sister-in-law. You just bet your life I have. I flatter myself that I helped to complete the job by pushing down the keys on the organ while my brother Clifford's knees behaved in a most mysterious manner. I am the only one now in the Young family that isn't signed up for life.
Perhaps you will be interested to know that I am still doing my bit toward making New York a noisier place by pursuing the musical profession. Yesterday I started organ lessons with Tertius Noble1, the organist at St. Thomas' Fifth Avenue Church. He is considered on of the greatest organists in the country, but he will not have that marvellous [sic] disposition when he gets through with me.
Having complied with Roswell's request, I shall now look forward to hearing all about my Campbell Cousins who are scattered all over the country. No one state seems to have been big enough to keep more than a few of them.
1. Small World Trivia: The link for Tertius Nobel tells us that for he was organist and choirmaster in Ely Cathedral in England One of Ann Clinch's English relatives, whom I met several times and corresponded with (one of these days I hope to add his letters to our web site), the Rev Cannon Edward Claude Essex, was a cannon at Ely Cathedral.
Utilizing Sandy Buck Garrett's 2012 transcription.
Copyright © 2013 William B. Thompson. Commercial use prohibited.