Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Letters of William Gilmore Simms. Vol. 6, Supplement >> 841a Octavia Walton Le Vert >> Page 174

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Page 174

Correspondence | U of South Carolina P | 2012
Transcription 174 THE SIMMS LETTERS
Woodlands, Midway P. O. So. Caro. March 15. [1857]'
Your letter, my dear Mrs. Le Vert found me along the roadside some ten days ago. It had been covered to me by my wife, with sundry others, had followed me to Washington, & took the back track after me, with such eagerness, that it overhauled me in the heart of North Carolina. Of course you winged it especially after my heart, or it never could have 'fetched[') so successful a compass, in pursuit. It found me, however, quite ill, suffering severely from catahrrhal affection contracted along the highways, and from which I continue to suffer. I seize upon the earliest possible moment, after reaching home, to reply to its genial contents.2—I am quite glad to learn that your 'Souvenirs' are so rapidly approaching completion. Permit me to say that your friends are quite right in counselling you to a single volume. Should you find your materials expand more than you calculate, then make 2 slender volumes, under one title, both issued from the press together, rather than two separate works. I should judge, however, that 900 pages of your M.S. would make a good duodecimo, of popular size, of 580 pages, print.—You are quite right in publishing at the North. There are two essentials for successful publishing, both of which we lack in the South—viz: a large city, & a regular publisher. It is because of these wants, especially, that we have so little Southern literature. I have no doubt that Redfield, my publisher, will be glad to entertain the proposals of your agent, & will deal with him as liberally, and, I am sure, as honestly, as any of the trade. I believe I wrote to you to this effect from N. Y. He authorized me, in fact, to do so.—Let me hope, that, no matter what publisher may enjoy the pleasant duty of introducing you formally to our pretty public, your book will prove
'Dated by Simms' references to his "Northern progress" and to his letter to Mrs. Le Vert of Nov. 24, 1856 (831a).
'For Simms' itinerary on this lecture tour, see note 1, Jan. 1, 1857 (838).