Woodland, SC: Dec 24 . 10" x 7.75", 1 pp., mail folds, rice paper mounting strip attached to rear left margin, otherwise fine. Content; Cheerful, friendly letter discussing upcoming schedules, deadlines and holiday wishes; "The Eve of Christmas, my dear...write in the wish that yours may be a happy one."; "I give up the Review and have to deliver orations and lectures in Charleston & have a work pledged to the publisher by the 1st of March. I feel at 48 older 60 – have grown 20 years older in the last 5 years. But there is life." Feeling the burden of his work demands and a sick son, "One of my little boys has fever", Simms ruminates, "There is an escape from toil one day or another."
William Gilmore (1806-1870) was born in Charleston, S.C., and lived much of his life in or near it, making frequent visits to northern publishing centers and to the Gulf Coast and the southern mountains. . Had the prize existed, he clearly would have earned at least one Pulitzer Prize for fiction. His extensive knowledge of southern regions influenced novels and tales set in the Low Country, such as The Yemassee (1835), The Partisan (1835), and The Golden Christmas (1852), which trace the development of the region from the colonial era through the Revolution and into the antebellum period
In addition to fiction, poetry, drama, orations, and literary criticism, he wrote a history and a geography of South Carolina and biographies of Francis Marion, Captain John Smith, the Chevalier Bayard, and Nathanael Greene. At the beginning and near the end of his career, he edited several South Carolina newspapers, and in the 1840s and 1850s he served as editor of important southern journals, among them the pro slavery Southern Quarterly Review, which he refers to in this letter. During the war, Simms was more active in pro-Confederacy and state politics during the war, which detracted from his literary work. He will be remembered for his energetic and often humorous work, important for its sweeping picture of the colonial and antebellum South. Fine. Item #1573