This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V18", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
The following letter from Mr. Rand is addressed to Mr. Mee-han personally, but as it relates to matter which appeared in the Gardener's Monthly, we presume it was intended for the Editor, and so give it a place in our columns:
"Boston, June 5, 1876.
Dear Mr. Meehan: - This morning my attention was called to your notice of my book on orchid culture. May I say that if you had found time to reply to either of my letters written in February last, asking for information as to any collection of orchids now or formerly existing in Philadelphia, the omissions of which you complain would not have occurred. I regret to have killed off Mr. Cope. My impression always was that his decease was the cause of the dispersion of his collection of plants..
I thank you for the faint praise. Perhaps if you were an orchid culturist you would find more to commend.
Now may I ask you a question which I heard one gentleman ask another - both well-known to you - at the horticultural rooms, and to which I have for years been unable to give an answer? ' What is the reason Mr. Meehan can see no good in anything that comes from Boston; he is as bitter as gall, and lets some unaccountable prejudice run away with him. Nothing from Boston can expect fair treatment at his hands.' While personally I have ever experienced courtesy from you, I cannot but be of our friend's opinion. Sincerely yours,
Edward S. Rand, Jr."
It is remarkable that with the knowledge that "nothing from Boston gets fair treatment," "Bos ton " should expect a "reply to two letters;" still more remarkable, that while "regretting" one's errors, it should be thought unfair treatment to have these errors pointed out. More remarkable still is the fact that two letters written to Mr. Meehan in February should never have reached him; and the climax of all these remarkable events is that because one gentleman writes letters to another gentleman who in courtesy is not bound to answer them unless he feels inclined to, that should afterward be offered as an excuse for errors in a book, which even the author himself "very much regrets."