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Dec 23, 2019

HPL sends his aunt a very telling Christmas letter. Written while he was living in Brooklyn, the letter is revealing about both HPL and those closest to him.

Music by Troy Sterling Nies

Special thanks to the Brown Digital Repository at Brown University.

You might need a New York Times subscription to see it, but there's a fascinating article about the crazy rich Wendel family

And while you're surfing, learn more about the fascinating Byron Khun de Prorok!

Lovecraft hoped to get a job at the Paterson Museum, where his friend James F. Morton was a curator and which was founded in the very year HPL wrote this letter. HPL never got that job, but the museum did eventually get its own new building. It's still going and is worth a visit!

Lovecraft mentioned a number of interesting figures in the letter we didn't have time to talk about in the episode. One was Edward Arnold, whose recent obituary HPL and his aunts had noted. Lovecraft said it was too bad his mother didn't "snap him up". He was a member of one of the founding families of Rhode Island (which also included the infamous Benedict Arnold). He mentions astronomical articles by "Brainin" and "Upton". C.S. Brainin was the editor of The Amateur Astronomer in the late 1920s, and Professor Winslow Upton was the director of Ladd Observatory in Providence when HPL was a boy and wrote articles for the Providence Journal. He also mentions enjoying the "Hoppin conceptions", which is a reference to noted 19th-century Providentian book illustrator Augustus Hoppin.