Riverside, Cambridge, Mass. 21 November 1870
To H. C. ANDERSEN
My Honored Friend,
I received a day or two since your kind letter of the first of the month, just indeed as I was about writing you; what you say in it comes very opportunely for I had begun my translation of Lykke Peer and wished to know how large the book would prove and when I could expect the completion. I have received thus far 96 pages, and I have translated about 60, the remainder of what I have on hand I expect to complete this week. I am delighted with the story. It really seems to me one of the brightest, most human and most attractive stories which I have read from your pen. The characters surely must be from life, they are so real. I find the greatest pleasure in translating it, especially after the very kind manner in which you were pleased to speak of my work.
The December number of The Riverside, which goes to you to-day, contains the announcement that the magazine is to be discontinued after this year. The Publishers have decided that it will not be expedient to go an with it, and I have ventured to make provision for the publication of such of your stories as you may be pleased to send me, to be published first in magazine form. Our good friends, Messrs. Scribner & Co. have begun the issue of a magazine, called Scribner’ s Monthly with which the Riverside is incorporated.
Scribner' s Monthly is a fine illustrated magazine for general reading, published and edited by high-toned, honorable men. They were very desirous to secure your contributions and I ventured to as sure them that such single stories as you might be disposed to send me I would translate for them, and transmit to you as before payment for the same. I hope that in this I have not overstepped the limits of our good understanding.
It would be impossible for us to publish Lykke Peer for the holidays in book form, because there would not be time. In order to get advantage of the holiday sales in our great country, we need to have our books on the counter not later than the first week in December, and it would take two or three weeks after the last page of your book was translated before it could be ready, and I have not yet received the whole of the book. Accordingly I have made arrangements with Scribner & Co. by which they shall print the story in three numbers of their magazine, beginning with the January number which appears about the middle of December, and then, say about the middle of March Hurd & Houghton will expect to add it in book form to their Edition of your works. You will not be the laser by this arrangement, for Scribner & Co. will first pay you liberally for its use in the magazine and Hurd & Houghton will afterwards pay for its use in book form.
The Complete Edition does not come on so fast as I could wish. We have been delayed by the difficulty in procuring paper; two books are ready to print, Stories and Tales and The Story of My Life. A Poet s Bazaar will come next.
We have already issued O. T. and Only a Fiddler, but as they were published after the 1st of July, no account appears of them in the enclosed Copyright AI c. They will appear in the rendering in Feby next which I trust may be larger. I now enclose a draft on Brown, Shipley & Co. of London for [£] 26/9/6, the amount due on your copyright al c as last rendered. I should explain that this draft was held back at the time from same apprehension as to the security of communication with Denmark, owing to war troubles.
I enclose also a draft on the same firm for [£] 3/12/3 payable to C. A. Reitzel’s order, and here I must ask your kind indulgence. I am very much interested in my studies in Danish contemporaneous literature, but I find it difficult to get the newest and best books. I know not whom I can ask except yourself to aid me. Will you then do me the great favor to spend the sum for me in a subscription to some first class weekly illustrated paper, and also some monthly critical journal, and then what remains may be left in Mr. Reitzel’s hands, so that he may send me any new book which seems to you or him fresh and likely to interest me. I like Björnson' s writings very much and if he has published anything in prose or poetry besides the following I should be very glad to have them. I have already
A Happy Boy
The Fisher Maiden
The Railroad and Churchyard.
I should like my remittance to cover postage charges. I trust I am not giving you too much trouble, my good friend, but I love your country and wish to know more of her literature.
Thanks for the kind manner in which you speak of my writings. I do not expect any honorarium at all, but if one paper or another should take them up, I should be highly honored. If it were done, could not a copy of the paper be sent me?
As soon as it can be done, we expect to send you a package of your recent works. With kind greetings from your Publishers, and from my family and with roy own hearty and affectionate remembrance
I am faithfully yours
HORACE E. SCUDDER