October 13, 1878
[...] Church left me at Bangor to stay over Sunday and I took sleeping car for Boston arriving at College Hill about 9 in the morning to find Gertrude [zijn echtgenote] alarmingly ill. They had refrained from writing me about it but on Monday Mr. Sawyer told me that she had been taken to Boston the day before by her physician to have her examined by a distinguished physician and that they had come to the conclusion that she had Addisons disease of the kidneys and that her case was all but hopeless. This was a shock for which I was ill prepared and now our great anxiety was to get home. I had one of my bad head aches on Sunday and Gertrude sleeping so badly we were in no condition to travel on Monday. We did come on Tuesday however via Hoosac Tunnel. The accomodations in the Wagner car were very inadequate and I had to improvise a bed for her as well as I could. She got to Albany with less fatigure than I expected. Here we had to wait two hours and the journey from there to Rhinebeck in a close, dirty car was very fatiguing. We were thankful to get in our large comfortable room where they had a fire on the hearth and Sara, Lucy and Gussie were ready to do every thing for. She had not slept for five days and nights, slept none to speak of that night and was very low indeed. Friday night Dr. Noxon came and gave me to understand she was near her end. Saturday (yesterday) I telegraphed Dr. Joslin to come up for consultation and he came by 11 o'clock train. Sara, Miss Noxon, Dr. Ingalls and Joslin were present at a careful examination conducted by Joslin. They agreed upon its being Addisons disease but most fortunately Dr. Joslin was perhaps the one physician in New York who had ever had a case and he had had two both of which were cured and one more strongly marked than Gertrude's. He was most hopeful and encouraging. Left her course of treatment for Sara to carry out and he and Miss Noxon left by 6 o'clock train. Gertrude was quite bright and not at all nervous all day but slept none last night only for an hour from 6 to 7 this morning. All day today she has been exceedingly nervous and she seems to me so to need rest and sleep that my alarm and anxiety are being constantly renewed. I write to her father daily. Sent him the encouraging result of the consultation yesterday.
[Gertrude overleed op 14 oktober]
October 18, 1878
Dr. Chapin came up at Dr. Sawyers request to officiate at the funeral, which took place at noon yesterday. The day was warm and golden, even too warm, and with considerable wind. Dr. Chapin surpassed himself in the fervor and beauty of his remarks. He read two beautiful hymns selected by Mr. Sawyer, one of them by Bryant, but no arrangement had been made for singing and there was none. We had no hearse and no [?] hands to put her to rest, it was all done by our family. A large concourse of people came to pay her their last honors and they were dismissed after the service and Dr. Chapin announced that the burial would be attended to by the family. Cousin John McEntee, Maurice, Girard, Jno. Andrews, Calvert, Joseph Tomkins and Fred Norton carried her to the grave on a bier and Calvert and [blank] staid and filled the grave and covered it with evergreens and flowers. Most of the family walked over to the cemetery, but Lucy, Sade and I did not go. Poor dear old Mrs. Winter came up from N.Y. to the funeral not knowing when it would take place but coming at a venture. Sara started for Boston this morning. She needed rest and wanted to be with Alice. The skies are soft and grey today and it has rained a little. Alice asked me to place some white roses in Gertrudes hands for her and then to send them to her which I did with the following lines.
Last roses of my happy summer time
[?]opping from resting hands I place in thine
in clasp of love their long and sweet caress
shall make again in wonted tenderness
fading, failing pulses beating slow
immortal beauty in their hearts of snow.