January 21st. Went to the Pont Royal to pass it at nine o'clock. Guards prevented me from going over. I had engaged to pass this day, which is one of horror, at Versailles, with Mr. Morris. The King was beheaded at eleven o'clock. Guards, at an early hour, took possession of the Place Louis XV, and were posted in each avenue. The most profound peace prevailed. Those who had feeling lamented in secret in their houses, or had left town. Others showed the same levity or barbarous indifference as on former occasions. Hichborn, Henderson, and Johnson went to see the execution, for which, as an American, I was sorry. The King desired to speak. He had only time to say he was innocent, and forgave his enemies. He behaved with the fortitude of a martyr. Santerre ordered the [executioner] to dispatch him. At twelve the streets were again all open.There is a tradition that when Colonel Ward quitted Paris, with a party of friends, the carriage was driven by a disguised nobleman, who thus escaped the guillotine. Our mother remembered him as a “gentleman advanced in years, with courtly manner and mild blue eyes, which were, in spite of their mildness, very observing.” She inherited many traits from the Wards, among them a force and integrity of purpose, a strength of character, and a certain business instinct which sometimes cropped up when least expected, and which caused some of her family to call her the “banker's daughter.” Those were also solid qualities which she inherited
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