POTTER (BEATRIX) Autograph letter signed, to Bertha Mahony Miller, 1940
Lot 144
POTTER (BEATRIX) Autograph letter signed, to Bertha Mahony Miller, 1940
Sold for £4,000 (US$ 6,247) inc. premium

Lot Details
POTTER (BEATRIX)
Autograph letter signed ("Beatrix Heelis"), to the children's bookseller Bertha Mahony Miller, in America, describing morale in England in the aftermath of the Dunkirk evacuation: "We went through a very black time during the Belgian betrayal and the incredible collapse of France. Lately there has been a revival of confidence, and it has been helped by the awakened sympathy of the States. I have never for a moment doubted the good feeling – the real distress that my New England friends were experiencing through their desire to help England. We just felt that your Congress was rather slow to grasp the seriousness of the pressure", and of life during German bombing raids ("...No bombs dropped yet within earshot...The Germans must be losing a great many [planes]...We see some wonderful flying by our own patrols... One thing is certain, I shall not run far..."); she also writes about their shared love of antiques, especially oak furniture and ceramics, including an account of a visit to an auction in Coniston where she bought "3 chests and a coffin stool" and "a Bristol punch bowl, early 18th. cent...it has written in the bottom fill every man his glass"; she also offers to find something suitable for The Horn Book, and concludes: "You tell me you find it difficult sometimes to concentrate so you took refuge in Pig Robinson!! Well – he sailed away and away and found peace; but we will struggle on and find peace – some day – at home", 4 pages, a little dust-marked, small 4to, Castle Cottage, Sawrey, Ambleside, 30 July 1940

Footnotes

  • BEATRIX POTTER TO BERTHA MAHONY AFTER DUNKIRK. This fine long letter is printed by Jane Crowell Morse, Beatrix Potter's Americans: Selected Letters (1982), pp. 117-120.
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