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Royall Tyler to Mildred Barnes Bliss, August 4, 1938 [2]


I’ve just sent you a cable,Cable of August 4, 1938 [1]. dearest Mildred, as follows:

Bill gladly accepts with loving thanks to youWilliam Royall Tyler was interested in enrolling in the museum studies program at the Fogg Art Museum at Harvard University. He was offered the position of unremunerated assistant with post-graduate tuition free. leaving bank as soon as arrangeable without inconveniencing them understand date arrival adjustable slightly if necessary.”

Your cableCable of August 3, 1938. reached me just before 10 last night. I at once rang up Bill in London, and got him. He was delighted—but also so much excited that he asked to sleep on it and talk about it to his Betsy. I gave him till 7 this morn., when I rang him up again and got his enthusiastic O.K. I then ‘phoned Elisina at Antigny. She was delighted. So you’ve got the whole family lined up.

I understand that Sachs shouldn’t feel justified in taking on his permanent paid staff a boy with no museum training, without having a good look at him first. But I think Bill will satisfy the Fogg, during this probationary year, as to his suitability—and for the rest I’m content to go ahead on the strength of your “overjoyed excellent prospects please wire us acceptance . . . ”

Bill will at once try to get released from the bank at as early a date as possible. But he does not want (and I should not want, in his place) to walk out on them if it’s going to cause real inconvenience, without some notice. He doesn’t anticipate much difficulty. But we hope that that 26 Sept. date isn’t absolutely hard and fast, and that there may be a little margin so as to give him a good spell of rest at Antigny before he starts. However, if it isn’t practicable, or in your view desirable, to ask for even a little battement,“Beat.” he won’t do so.

Bill was examined (regular quarterly inspection) by his doctor the other day—who knows him well. Lungs O.K., and “general condition satisfactory.” So we don’t feel any scruple in his taking on a new job.

I felt a bit sorry, afterwards, that I had sent Gioia’s impulsive letter. She easily goes off the deep end. But there is a substratum of truth in it. Bill admits to me that when he has to work over hours, day after day, he feels depleted, and tired the next morning. And he ought not to feel like that—a condition in which he’s at the mercy of a cold plus a stray bug. I bless you for jolting us into getting him out of it, and for your helping hand in making it smooth going for him and us.

And you’re angels to want to take the trouble to look into furnished house possibilities. Of course, assuming that a permanent job is forthcoming at the end of this probationary year, they’ll want to bring over their own rattletraps, of which they have a complete outfit.

I’m going to Paris on Sunday to see those KhawamKhawam Brothers, an antiquities business that was founded in Cairo in 1862 by Sélim Khawam. bracelets,BZ.1938.64–65. and will cable you about them, with last price I can get.

I long to hear if MADBZ.1938.62. has arrived, and how you like her.

Fondest love and blessings to you both


R. T.

There’s a regular Am. invasion here. I spent the whole day yesterday with a string of them: the entire morning talking to Congressman TinkhamGeorge Holden Tinkham (1870–1956), a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from the state of Massachusetts. (Boston !!) We got on famously. It helps “just to have come from over there”!

Associated Artworks: BZ.1938.62; BZ.1938.64–65