Wlliam Gilmore Simms
The Simms Review (Vol 8: No 2) >> Sallie F. Chapin's Tribute to Simms >> Page 1

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Reviews/Essays | [1872]
Transcription Sallie F. Chapin's Tribute to Simms



In Simms Review, vol. 3, no. 2, David Aiken's "Simms's Death House
Discovered" (pp. 5-8) treats Sallie Chapin's attendance of Simms at his death. As
Aiken reveals, Mrs. Chapin was a neighbour and writer friend, not his "nurse." Mrs.
Chapin's novel Fitz-Hugh St. ('lair, The South Carolina Rebel Boy (Philadelphia:
Claxton, 1872) has one of the finest tributes to Simms within its pages. Chapin places
it in the mouth of one of her novel's characters.
From this tribute, we learn more of Simms's last words at his death ("I am
very weary; let me go to rest"), and the fact that there on Society Street in Charleston
where he died, he was writing "in a room riddled by shells," projectiles lodged there
during savage bombardment by Federals some half decade earlier. We learn that
because of the invader's destruction of his library, he was deprived of books,
including his own, "being compelled to borrow copies of his own works." Finally, we
gauge the depth of appreciation Charleston had for her native son in her well-phrased
words. Mrs. Chapin obviously had talent, and she did honour to her mentor in both
this tribute and in penning and publishing this well-written novel. Fortunately, the
Simms Society can count among its members a direct lineal descendant of Sallie
Chapin, a member who, like her ancestor, continues to honour this friendship.



FITZ-HUGH ST. CLAIR. 245

lie buried in every part of the country. They have
gone, with their_ wrongs, to heaven, and patiently are
waiting the great assize ; but I tell you, no one knows
what it is (until it has been tried) " to have patience"
while your children are starving and dying before
your eyes, and our whole land is filled with the moral
wrecks which tyranny and oppression are making.
A few months ago Carolina's gifted son, Hon.
William Gilmore Simms, the historian, novelist, and
poet, passed away from earth. " `woodlands harp was
mute," and the grand old man, friend and peer of
Irving, Prescott, Cooper, Longfellow, Bryant, and
Bancroft, was laid in the beautiful cemetery he had
dedicated in song to its solemn use. He had toiled in
the fields of literature for fifty years, and Europe and
America united to honor him. " Ile belonged to the

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