The letters just previous to the war of the Rebellion
, and while it continued, show the warmest interest, are filled with love of country and of the freedom of the slave which the dread ordeal must establish.
One other subject only was as dear to her, that of spiritual religion.
Much change in her religious convictions took place in the course of her life, as it must to a growing mind, a change from the Calvinism in which she was trained to the advanced liberal thought of Theodore Parker
, but it only deepened her vital faith in the goodness of God and the hope of immortal life.
The letters here presented are all taken from her correspondence of fifty years with her friend William H. Furness, D. D.
, of Philadelphia
The youth of Dr. Furness
was passed in Medford
in the Parson Turrell house
, which stood near what is now known as Winthrop square. He was eleven years her junior, but a friendship began in their youth which continued through her life.
In these letters may be traced the history of Miss Osgood
, her scholarly, literary, moral, philanthropic, and religious interests, as well as her personal characteristics.
Only a small portion of them can be presented from lack of space to print them.
But it is good to preserve some clear outline of this noble and gifted woman, who was honored and beloved in Medford
, and is worthy of the remembrance of a later generation, to win it, if it may be, ‘to the still air of delightful studies.’
I wish to express my deep sense of personal obligation to the kindness of Dr. Horace Howard Furness
for the loan of these letters to his father, an obligation we shall all feel as we read them.
A Glimpse of herself.