Letter from Ned Cushman to Susan Muspratt, n.d. [before June, 1854]

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Letter from Ned Cushman to Susan Muspratt, n.d. [before June, 1854]


Muspratt, Susan Cushman, 1822-1859
Cushman, Edwin "Ned" Charles, 1838-1909
Cushman, Edwin "Ned" Charles, 1838-1909
Hays, Matilda Mary, 1820-1897
Gender Norms


In this letter, Ned Cushman mentions Hays and Charlotte Cushman's friendship ("friends"). He tells his mother about financial concerns and gossip-related incidents both at the Naval Academy as well as the dangers for girls at boarding schools.


Library of Congress, Charlotte Cushman Papers, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. 


Cushman, Edwin "Ned" Charles, 1838-1909


LoC, CCP, 10:3145-3146





Letter Item Type Metadata


[3145] My dear Mother
I received your letters of the 3rd, and 28th a few days ago, and am very much obliged to you for them. I should have liked to be at home very much, on my birthday. I do not think it likely, that I can get leave this summer, and therefore will be obliged to go out in the practice ship. I do not know what I shall do this year, to get sea stres and such things, to carry out with me. I do not like to ask aunty for the money because I think that she would not be willing to let me have it, and I do not wish you to think of giving me any, for I know very well how you are situated, and besides, the doctor has been ery kind to me, and I do not wish him to send me anymore, than he has done. I do not like to send to Mr Harlan [?] for the chair because he wrote me once, that he would not forward me anything without the written consent of my parents; now this may have been said in a very friendly way, but when a person speaks to me in that way, it makes me think that he is not willing to trust me, and I never will ask any more favors of such a person.

[reverse] You speak to me in your letter, about writing to aunty. I know that I should do it, but not having written to her for so long, it would make me feel, as though she thought I wrote to her, because I want something. The usual leave f absence, is three months, I should have plenty of time to come home, if I could get leave. I am glad that you have given up the idea of coming to this country, for although I should like to see you very much, yet,  think it is for the best that you did not come. Anyhow, I shall be intitled [sic] to a leave next summer, without being under obligations to anyone. Mr Marey is very kind to me. I like him very much, but I am afraid that he is going to leave the academy on July, to go to sea. Mrs Marey is a very kind nice lady, I know you would like her very much. About a year ago, some of the midshipmen got into difficulty, by drinking too much, and were going to be dismissed. The chaplain, a very kind man, persuaded the captain, to let them off, on the conditions, that all the other members of the academy, would sign the pledge not to drink any spirituous liquors while attached to the academy, consequently, I am one who signed it, but it did not put me to any trouble, for I did not drink anything before, but sometimes a glass of wine, when I was invited to dinner anywhere. I could not seny you any measure, for I did not know how to take them, and I felt a delicacy about

[3146] asking Mry Marey to do it. When I come home next year, you can take all my measures, and then all will be right. I am very much obliged to Grandmother for the handkerchiefs she is sending me. Mr Marey may think I have ample means, but sometimes when I have not much money due me, I cannot get some clothes which I want. Now, I have not got any decent cloth clothes, and I am forced to make what I have do me. I am very sorry to hear that the Doctor has been unwell, I hope he has by this time, entirely recoveres. I am very glad to hear that Rose is getting along so well, with her studies, Mother, for gracious sale, do not send her to boarding school until you think she is old enough to know how to take care of herself, and not allow herself to be influenced by others. I know what boarding schools are, and I have known girls, who went to them, & I have have [sic] always noticed their behavior, I have thought about Rose often in this way. You may think it strange, that a son should be talking to his mother in this way, but I think. that you will not blame me for it. Do not show this part, to any one but grandmother or the Doctor. I should like very much to see dear Ida, she must be about as large now, as Rose was, when I left. Mother you have been very very good to me, and now that I am getting to think soberly of my past

[reverse] life, I think that I have worried you very much. I think I shall pass my examination pretty well this time although it is the hardest course we shall ever have to go through. You ask me how tall I am: The last time I was measures, I was 5 feet 4 inches. The summer has not as yet set in, but the trees are now just beg+++ to come into leaf. I hope aunty will not have anything more to do with Miss Hays. She takes  such strange friends, that she can hardly expect much from them. I am very well at present and hope that you are all the same. If you send me any neck ties sen the black ones. If you write to Mr Harlan about the chair, will you tell him to send me one of those which throw back, if they do not cost any more. I remember we had one in Liverpool, or somewhere. Give my love to all at home, and believe me your affectionate son.
C.E. Cushman


Cushman, Edwin "Ned" Charles, 1838-1909


Muspratt, Susan Cushman, 1822-1859


United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland

Geocode (Latitude)


Geocode (Longitude)



The archivist only added [April] on the original document, no year given.

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Cushman, Edwin "Ned" Charles, 1838-1909, “Letter from Ned Cushman to Susan Muspratt, n.d. [before June, 1854],” Archival Gossip Collection, accessed April 22, 2024, https://archivalgossip.com/collection/items/show/75.

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