Sara Jeannette Duncan/Lily Lewis Archive

Miss Cleveland's Book (Washington Post, July 26 1885)

Duncan writes about Rose Cleveland, the current de facto First Lady of the United States. She was actually the sister of the single Grover Cleveland and, significantly, would go on to pursue an openly lesbian relationship late in life (Duncan does describe her a “Sappho” figure). She talks about her book (George Eliot’s Poetry and Other Studies, which came out in 1885. Duncan reports that her and other Canadians did enjoy it, but wonders how Cleveland would feel about that. She begins to discuss American-Canadian relations, stating that she started the book rather reluctantly. Duncan talks about how she was going to write passionately in defense of Queen Victoria’s book (perhaps More Leaves from the Journal of a Life in the Highlands) and how it was better than the reviling Americans’, but soon realizes how much better Cleveland’s book is. She appears apologetic, humorously talking about how Victoria did not have a formal education. Duncan talks about how she loves how emphatic and straight-forward Cleveland’s writing is, commenting on various sections of George Eliot. She concedes that Miss Cleveland deserves congratulations.


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