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Letter from Joseph Lindon Smith to Corinna Putnam Smith, Pages 1, 2 and envelope
Letter from Joseph Lindon Smith to Corinna Putnam Smith, Page 3
From Dahabeah 'Serapis'
On the way from Luxor to Assouan
20th Feb 1908

Dear Family
I have been on the boat three days, and we are nearing Kom Ombos, and expect to get to Assouan tomorrow afternoon.
I wrote a letter from the Weigalls the morning after my arrival there, and since then have been so rushed with one thing and another that I haven't had a half hour to myself.
I began some painting at once, two pictures over at Kheni(?)-het and a large study in Luxor Temple of the head and shoulders [life size] of that fine bas relief which I did before - a small watercolor, whole figure which Emory Gardner bought.
Arthur had a tall scaffolding put up and I began the picture with the greatest interest, and it went very well and has come out a great success - and is one of the most real things I have ever done and you will all like it immensely I am sure - Mother will particularly admire it as there is some great cracks and stains etc.
When the Cuttings arrived, they wanted me to join them at once but I stayed on one more night at the Weigalls and went with Arthur and his mother to Karnak - by full moon - wonderfully grand and impressive as ever.
Arthur and I dined with the Carnarvons at the Winter Palace Hotel and Lord C. wanted me to visit them and see his pictures and Rothchilds also.
The cute Weigall baby is not at all well and they are to send him back to England shortly. Egypt does not seem to agree with him. Arthur's mother is going back in a couple of weeks and he will stay with her - Hortense goes back also but not until June or July.
Mrs Slater and her daughter turned up and this crowd and the Weigalls and Mrs Slater all lunched over at the tombs of the kings up there in the cool shade from of Sethi II.
As for this company, they are most charming and friendly and very good company indeed - Lady Sybil is attractive and pretty and her husband very very nice - Gordon Gardner is all that his many good friends in Boston told me he was - thoroughly equable and witty and jolly, and the two boys Bronson and his school mate Genoux just as nice as they can be - there is beside an agreeable young English doctor, named Bishop.
They gave me the warmest possible welcome and one of the nicest cabins on the boat and I found that they had heard of stories and other forms of entertainment which they were breathless to hear and see - and my slightest offering is most thoroughly appreciated, with roars of laughter and they beg for more - I hope I have enough to last through the voyage. It was nice to be warmly welcomed by people I had never seen before and I am having a delightful time - the service and food and everything on the boat is as you might expect superlative - and we are all well and having the time of our lives - that is not strictly true in my case - as you know well enough I should much prefer any one of our dear old slow dahabeyahs surrounded with you all.
Old Hassan and Iusef could not stop kissing my hand and saying 'how are you my master, my brother' and how is the sitt (...) little one and the big man and 'Becka and Tine' - they remembered their names. Our bank looks much the same except that there is not little bay or cove as there used to be - and Mr. Davis has no island this year.
The gaffirs in the Valley all came and shook hands and all asked after Corinna. I took lunch with Tyndale over at Currelly's camp and he asked after you all. Ayerton I did not see - as he had gone to Luxor the day I was in the Valley but I say Mary and Flox (?) - Mary has been a mother since I last saw her and a little Mary is about.
My painting started off so well - I feel sure that I shall do some splendid things. Arthur and I went up to Karnak and saw Legrain and his work - he sent an elaborate nonsensical message.
Dal turned up on Mrs Tiffany's dahabeya - and Bronson Cutting and I went there and dined with them - it was very nice to see Frances. She has enjoyed it greatly.
Yesterday we passed Uncle Theodore - on his way back from Assouan to Luxor - everybody was indoors and no one answered my spasmodic waves - the weather is ideal.
We have just arrived at Assouan - and I am going up to find Dowe and the others - Assouan Cooks very gay and animated - the hotels are full.
How I wish you were all here,
love from Joe


3 page letter from Dahabeah 'Serapis' on way from Luxor to Assouan


Joseph Lindon Smith


American Archives of Art, reel 5115




open source

Original Format




Joseph Lindon Smith, “1908-2-20 Letter by Joseph Lindon Smith to Corinna Smith,” The Emma B. Andrews Diary Project, accessed May 22, 2024,


Item Relations

Item: Lindon Smith, Joseph wrote This Item