From Asa Gray 3 August 1871
Botanic Garden, | Cambridge, Mass.
Aug 3, | 1871
My Dear Darwin
Thank you for apprising me of the coming of your sons.1 It will be a great pleasure to us to do the little we can to make their visit interesting. I will communicate with them at N. Y. and very likely see them there a day or so later.2 I have to go next week W. a summer journey into a hot region not to be coveted, but it can’t be helped as I have consented to preside at the Meeting of our Amer. Association for Adv. Science—which meets this year at Indianapolis, one of the new cities of the plains of the west— as uninteresting as possible.3 I was doubting whether to go via New York City & Pennsylvania or by a more northern route. This decides me to go via New York, and if, as I conjecture, they mean to push for the West at once, I shall try to have them take Indianapolis in their way and tarry for the meeting, where they will find a hearty welcome for your sake. and a good many people they may like to know or who will be useful acquaintances at their respective places of abode. The Association are engaged for an excursion half way to the Mammoth Cave, and some of us are very likely to go on to it.4
Of course I shall have introductions to offer them at some of the places on the list,5 and will arrange when I see them and know their plans. Ten weeks are all too short, and they will want to make the most of time. It is right to come here later, both for Boston and for Cambridge.
I have never been west farther than Ohio, and all that country is monotonous & dull. I have promised to spend the Sunday & Monday week at one of the towns on your list, Columbus, Ohio—with my old friend Sullivant.6 And if my programme suits I hope your sons will meet or overtake me there.
Except a charming short visit to a friend on Hudson R. we have been at home all summer so far7—I working at Flora of N. America—and superintending the construction of a Lecture-room, &c—and an orchid-house adjoining here,—a generous and sensible man having given me the money to build these—for the University.8 It takes up a deal of my time.
You do not speak of yourself, but as you write with your own hand, I infer you are pretty well. Do not forget, nor too long delay, that paper on Dionæa & Drosera.9
Ever Yours most truly | Asa Gray
AG hopes to meet CD’s sons, who are visiting America.
Please cite as
Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 7894,” accessed on 17 January 2017, http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/DCP-LETT-7894