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[245] my father's house—57 Mt. Vernon Street—to dine, and we waited with a good deal of anxiety for news from the State House, which was but two blocks away. Before we had been long at dinner, my younger brother, Henry, was seen coining up to the door, and from the slow manner in which he walked we drew not very favorable conclusions. He came into the room, and was at once eagerly asked what the vote had been. He then stated, I remember, that so many votes were cast, and that Mr. Sumner had received so many, being the exact number necessary for a choice. I perfectly well remember that Mr. Sumner received the result with perfect placidity, merely suggesting some question as to its details. Meanwhile, I happened to be seated next to him, and turning towards him, said, “Mr. Sumner, I want to shake hands with you first;” upon which he very kindly gave me his hand, and accepted my congratulations. The circumstances of the ballot were then discussed; and hardly had my brother given the details as they rested in his memory, when a number of persons were seen eagerly moving along the street, and they speedily came up to the door, and the bell was rung. Their inquiry was if Mr. Sumner were there, as they had heard that he was dining with Mr. Adams. They were informed that he was; and they walked upstairs into my father's library, where I suppose twenty or thirty persons may then have come together, and congratulated him.1 Shortly after, he left the house and went out to Mr. Longfellow's, where he passed that afternoon and the following night, very wisely getting out of the way of the jubilations which followed that afternoon and evening. These are all the circumstances of the case; and I remember them as distinctly as if they occurred but yesterday. The chief thing that rests upon my memory is the utter absence of any apparent elation or excessive interest on Mr. Sumner's part. He received the news of his success with as perfect calmness and absence of any appearance of excitement as was possible. There was no change in his face or in his manner; and the latter was one of perfect quiet and self-possessed dignity. He certainly was far less elated than was my father or any of my father's children; though the elation was natural enough with us, as we were then by no means grown up.

Sumner remained at Cambridge two or three nights. Longfellow wrote in his diary, April 24:—

A pleasant dinner, at the close of which we heard the news of Sumner's election. In the evening came Lowell and Gurowski and Palfrey, and Sumner himself to escape from the triumph and be quiet from all the noise in the streets of Boston. He is no more elated by his success than he has been depressed by the failure heretofore, and evidently does not desire the office. He says he would resign now if any one of the same sentiments as himself could be put in his place.

25. The papers are all ringing with Sumner, Sumner! and the guns

1 Anson Burlingame and Thomas Gaffield were among the number. The latter states that Sumner thanked the callers for their kindness, saving that he rejoiced with them for the cause, at the same time declining a public demonstration which was proposed for the evening, and expressing the wish that nothing would be done to denote the success of a person instead of a cause.

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