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Childhood Letters of Emily Hockaday Blair (Henrotin)
Missouri: , 1888-1894. Missouri, 1888-1894. Emily was born on November 16, 1883 in Missouri. Both her mother and father were a part of well-known and prestigious families in the 1800s. Her mother was from a prominent, pioneering Missouri family, the Prices. Her grandfather Robert Beverly Price was a well-known banker and gentleman farmer, who was active in local politics. He was also greatly involved in the financial success of his alma mater, the University of Missouri. He served as Treasurer for the university for over forty-five years. Emily herself attended the university in 1907. On her father's side of the family, she was a part of one of the most powerful political families of the 19th century, the Blairs. Emily was the granddaughter of Francis Preston, Jr, and the great granddaughter of Francis Preston, Sr. Preston Sr. was an American journalist, newspaper editor, and influential figure in national politics advising several U.S. presidents across the party lines. He was an unofficial adviser to presidents Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren and Abraham Lincoln. Preston Jr. was an American jurist, politician and soldier. During the Civil War he held the rank of Major General, and commanded a division at Vicksburg under Sherman. He even took part in Sherman's March to the Sea. He was a Missouri Senator, and in 1868, he was Horatio Seymour's vice-presidential candidate for the Democratic Party losing presidential ticket. The Blair family was particular close to Mary Todd Lincoln's family and therefore Abraham Lincoln. In fact, Emily's father, Francis Preston Blair III, reported even played 'town ball' with Abraham Lincoln during his visits to their family's estate in the mid-1860s. Emily's father, Francis Preston Blair III, unlike his forebears and siblings, did not follow in his family's footsteps of national political ambitions. As a young man he graduated West Point and was stationed at Fort Hamilton. Later he studied law at Columbia University in New York. After receiving his degree, he met and married Florence Price. After his marriage, he opened up a law practice first in St. Louis and later Chicago. Emily herself would eventually marry into a prominent Chicago family, the Henrotins. Her in-laws were the Chicago power couple of Ellen Martin Henrotin and Charles Henrotin. Ellen was a writer, activist and staunch suffragette, while Charles was a prominent banker who founded the Chicago Stock Exchange and eventually became an influential person in global politics as he was Consul to both Belgium and Turkey. Emily married their elder son, Edward, and would eventually move to Cherryplain, New York, where she and her husband were involved in farming and sheep breeding. Emily H. B. Henrotin would die in 1965.. A wonderful collection of over 40 items of a child's letters to her parents. Emily Hockaday Blair was only five years old when her mother and father sent her away to her aunt's house in 1888. Emily spent at least several months there a year while her parents were traveling between various cities in Missouri, Chicago, Washington, DC, and New York. Eventually it appears she also began to go to school year around near her Aunt's house. For the next six years Emily sent letters to her father, Francis Preston Blair III, and mother, Florence Price Blair, keeping them updated on her education and constantly asking to see them soon or if they were sending her any dolls. The collection includes correspondence and drawings done by Emily Hockaday Blair. The letters written by Emily are addressed to Faver and Mudgie, presumably pet names for her father and mother. The envelopes within the collection are either addressed to Florence Price Blair or Francis Preston Blair. The first few letters are from 1888 when Emily would have been about five years old. These early letters mostly consist of Emily practicing her writing on one side, normally writing either her or a family members
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Last Found On: 2017-12-01           Check availability:      ABAA    

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