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[239] gained long before; for every study in which he had engaged had been undertaken, not from passing fancy, or to gratify a pride of knowledge, but to develop fully each faculty in harmony with, and aid of, every other. He had great patience in acquiring information, always seeking, in conversation, rather to receive than to impart, and to possess himself of all that any source offered to him. Hence his completeness of information made his knowledge always equal to the moment, and left him master of himself and of the occasion.

He remained at the Law School for eight months, and then entered the office of the Hon. Edmund Cushing, in Charlestown, New Hampshire. His life here was uneventful in enterprise or adventure; but in the undeviating pursuit of self-culture, and the busy toil of an active mind preparing for its work, it was crowded with effort. His letters to his family, in his absence from home, were graphic, with characteristic sketches with pen and pencil,—for he drew as readily as he wrote,— and a quiet sense of humor caught, without fail, the grotesque side of country life. In his stay of more than a year, he left upon the people whom he met an enduring impression of his strength and purity of character, which found warm and affectionate expression when his death brought sharply to remembrance the qualities they had prized.

Willard left Charlestown in 1854, and, returning to Boston, entered the law office of the Hon. Charles G. Loring. He studied here until his admission to the bar in 1856, when, feeling the necessity of a wider experience of men before committing himself to any locality for life, he went to St. Paul, Minnesota, with a view to establish himself in business there, if it seemed advisable. But the West did not attract him. He had not the ready gift of adaptation to new and uncongenial men and manners, and was slow to forego his fixed habits of thought and work for immediate success. He therefore wisely gave up all thought of seeking his fortune elsewhere than in New England, and came back to practise in Boston. Success surely awaited him here, and success in his own way, and in a community peculiarly congenial to his temper and training;

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