Minding our Domestic Manners

We’re one of the few people we know who has actually read Frances Trollope’sfrances_trollope Domestic Manners of the Americans. We didn’t just read it. We read it and liked it. A lot. We’ve actually re-read it. We’re going to use our slot in the Stacked rotation to try to make converts out of youse from time to time this year. She was such a pip. Married to such a drip. And she’s the patron saint of anybody who ever came here having grown up somewhere else and then tried to figure the place out. She’s great. And so is Domestic Manners. Not just for her sharp take on the touchy little city, but for the incredible footnotes and commentary that was inserted in Donald Smalley’s outstanding 1949 Knopf edition.

Frances had a great cast of supporting characters. One of them was Auguste Hervieu, a big-hearted French artist who kept Mrs. Trollope and her family afloat when their retail project failed to pan out. Hervieu painted an enormous version of Lafayette’s landing in Cincinnati. It’s been missing forever. A lifetime’s free membership in the Library will be awarded to the first person to locate the painting.

-Nemo Wolfe

Published in: on January 16, 2009 at 12:04 pm  Comments (2)  

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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. This sounded familiar… I soon realized that I, too, had dedicated a post to Mrs. Trollope’s short time in Porkopolis.

  2. I don’t suppose you know where that big old painting is, do you?

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