"How OS living, a dream" Read the full letter

Levine Sauer Collection



A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date        [August 1891]
Address From    [O'Callaghan's International Hotel, Gardens, Cape Town, Western Cape]
Address To        []
Who to              [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/1]


[LEGEND: This letter has been dated by reference to when Schreiner stayed in O'Callaghan's International Hotel.]

O'Callaghan's
INTERNATIONAL HOTEL
The Gardens

My dear Mary, such a funny thing happened just the day I wro after I wrote to you about that woman whose unreadable who came to tell me about that man & married him to her sister, I got a letter from her to tell me he & her sister were going to have a child next month. I don’t think I’ve mentioned her for years till I did to you, but & it was strange she should have written just now. I never answer her letters, I told her long ago I couldn’t: but I would do more for her than any woman in the world. There’s no sympathys between us so there would be no use in writing unless she were in poverty & trouble, but she is very rich. This morning I got a letter from the poor beautiful woman who came out in the Scott. I send it you in deepest confidence because I think you might be able to love her & help her if she ever came here, and because, it helps one all round to see how human & like ourselves these poor sisters of ours are. It makes it so almost impossible for her to lead a beautiful life that no other women will believe in their wish to change.

My dear one, my heart is still a little sore

[page/s missing]






A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date        [after January 1891 - before February 1891 ]
Address From  [na]
Address To      []
Who to             [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/2]


[LEGEND: This letter has been dated by reference to other letters to Mary Sauer in which Schreiner's plan of visiting 'the interior' and the 'Zambezi' are mentioned.
 

[the start of the letter is missing]

2.

than any place in South Africa.

Yes, dear life is small & inexplicable if we take only our own individual lives, they are not a whole they mean nothing. How shall one explain all the crushed out hope, the suppressed emotions, the little value or use of our own lives, until we are able to see in them nothing but tiny parts of a great whole which is being worked out beautifully in ways we cannot understand. No human being lives alone, we are just parts of the great human race which slowly age by age is ?unfolding itself, & from the low, poor savage state reaching slowly the condition in which the far thinking deep feeling man or woman are possible. Of my own life I never think as anything but that which in an infinitesimal way may help the men & women who come after me; humanity grows better just by the little tiny better & better,” in each individual who makes it’. And after all love & knowledge in themselves are ends. Just to have loved something, just to know & reason & think make life worth living. You are not feeling less or shallow dear, life has simply never put a strain on you, which has ^been enough to press^ unreadable unreadable out all that is in you. You don’t know yourself .

^I feel as if I should have to give up my visit to the Zambezi because it seems to me, however much money I earn there will always be other things I have to do with it, & with my time.

You would laugh if you knew what a great disappointment this is to me I have dreamt of it for many many years^

^I am writing this in great haste
Good bye
Olive^





A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date      [nd]
Address From  [na]
Address To      []
Who to            [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/3]



My darling Mary, It was beautiful to see you last night. I enjoyed my evening so much. Keep Mr Sauer up to the point about Matjesfontein.

I woke up & laughed in the night about the “line movement”.

My darling don’t say anything more to me about Mr Rhodes’ love affairs. You know it does seem to me wrong to talk about other peoples feelings in that matter. One half of the misery & trouble in the world, the wrong marriages, the impossibility of real, true, simple, friendship between men & women comes simply from the fact that without meaning any harm often in the tenderest & most sympathetic way we women by our aimless speaking make the beautiful impossible. I asked a man here the other day why he didn’t go to see a woman he told me he very much liked & wished to see more of, & he said it was impossible. He would not have called there three times before she would fancy he must more or less intend to marry her, & that all her women friends would

[page/s missing]





A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date       [1891]
Address From   [Matjiesfontein, Western Cape]
Address To       []
Who to             [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/4]
 

[LEGEND: This letter has been approximately dated by reference to other letters concerning Schreiner’s ‘The Buddhist Priest’s Wife’ and also that the “Baba’ referred to is Mary Sauer’s first child, her daughter Dorothy.]
 

Matjesfontein

Paine’s “History of English Literature“ is also a book you might like to read. There’s a splendid English translation of it.

How are you all? Kiss Baba for me. When are you passing here on your way up country? I’m sorry I can’t go too. I’m too busy. Working all the time. Going to publish my beloved Buddhist Priest’s Wife soon. That’s the hardest of all to part with. No news except that I’m flourishing & so is Dick.

Will you please, dear return me those letters if they are not destroyed which I wrote to you when I was at the International on a certain subject; & also those I sent you from the Queens. I’m always so afraid if I died people might get hold of my letters & publish them! I see If I’ve destroyed them myself no one can. I think that habit of publishing all ones letters when one is dead so horrible because it destroys all the sacredness of life. There are things you will tell one person or allow them to see you you couldn’t bear even other human beings you love as well to know.

The moment Miss Cameron saw me she began to talk about Mr Fort & ask me if I really thought he had proposed to Adela, & I had to run right through from the beginning over all reasons which to me seem to make it wrong to discuss other people’s love affairs. I don’t think she was angry with me; but I can’t understand why it should seem to me a palpably a wicked & wrong thing to do, & that other people much better & great than I in many ways don’t think so. Perhaps it is because I should mind it so much in my own case.

Good bye dear. I hope you’re having a good time.
Olive

Try & sleep a night here on your way up. Do .






A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date        [17 December 1897] 
Address From    [The Homestead, Kimberley, Northern Cape]
Address To        []
Who to             [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/5]



The Homestead
Dec 17/97

Darling Mary

Do before you are taken ill tell them that they must wire me at once & tell me of the arrival of our little Peter. Tell nurse, I’m sure she won’t forget I hope it is not so terribly hot with you as it is here, but your bedroom is beautifully cool & airy.

Good bye my darling I am always thinking of you. I am thankful you will not really be in the hands of the hired nurse, that there will be your own dear old nurse to look after you & see they don’t neglect you. Olive

PS Wasn’t it nice of people ! – with-in three days after the co Cron’s case with Cornwell we had cheques to the amount of £ 485 ! sent (in some cases from people we hardly knew) to pay the costs & the damages; and a friend from Johannesburg wrote that a lot of people there whom we don’t know ^all Englishmen^, wanted to know what the costs of the case had been as they felt the case was a public matter & that we should not be allowed to pay anything ourselves! Of course we returned all the cheques & declined the kind offers, but it did my heart good because It helps unreadable shows that there is a strong feeling in all parts of the country against the terrible corruption of our public life which Rhodes is carrying on. I hope Mr. Sauer is going to make a big fight this session & show what he can do






A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date      [17 July 1913]
Address From  [De Aar, Northern Cape]
Address To      []
Who to            [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/6]



Dear Mary, I have been so grieved to hear of your husband’s illness. I was so glad this morning to hear he was a little better. I fear all the worry & trouble of things just now have made him worse. We couldn’t miss him from our public life: & I personally have a curious tenderness for him. In many ways he’s the man with the largest gifts in South Africa. Do let me know if you & he are passing here. I sympathize with him in his physical suffering as perhaps no one else can. My love to Dorothy & Paul if they are with you.

Good bye my darling,
Olive

De Aar
July 17th 1913

[NOTATION: This letter was written on hearing the news that Sauer had suffered a stroke and indicates a contib=nuing close friendship between Screiner and Mary Sauer. ‘All the worry and trouble’ refers to Sauer having steered the ‘Natives Land Act’ into law, a policy Schreiner had vehemently opposed.]





A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date        [24 July 1913]
Address From    [De Aar, Northern Cape]
Address To        []
Who to              [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/7]


[LEGEND: This letter was written in the evening when the special train with J. W. Sauer’s body passed De Aar on the night of 24 July, following his death early that morning (after a stroke a week before). The insertion at the top of the letter is written onto the front of the envelope.]


^Please give in to special train
Mrs J. W. Sauer
Passing de Aar
Thursday night^

Mary, my beloved Mary,

Cron has just come in and told me the news.

My dear one I hear you are to pass here tonight with him about 2 or 3 o’clock. I at first planned to go down to the station & wait till you passed; but worn out with watching & sorrow you will will be having a much need rest.

Oh Mary, it has been it has been such a blow to me. This morning’s Cape papers said he was much better.

I can’t tell you, dear, not only what I feel for you, but what I feel we have all lost. He was one of the few true liberals we have in our public life, we could not lose him now. And his wonderful individuality, his wonderful personality – silence forever. My dear, dear friend, if I could only just put my arms around you & let you feel how I am feeling with you.

Give my best love to Paul & Dorothy. I know how dear their father was to both of them.

Your own friend,
Olive Schreiner

Thurs-day night.
Cron sends his ?love to you. We both feel that if he had lived he would have helped to manage these labour problems with a justice & wisdom no other man will show.





A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date        [Sunday 27 July 1913]
Address From    [De Aar, Northern Cape]
Address To        []
Who to              [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/8]


[LEGEND: This letter has been dated by reference to the date of the Sunday in July 1913 that followed Sauer’s death.]


de Aar,
Sunday night

Mary darling, I am so grieved to hear from Anna Purcell that you & Dorothy were down with bad influenza. I hope you are both better. Dear, I’m always thinking of you but I don’t like to trouble you with letters.

People talk so much of the sadness when a young wife loses her husband – but I think its so much harder for an old one. All those long years of common life make a chain that cannot be broken without breaking oneself.

I hope you got the note I gave the station master for you the night you passed.

I know Paul will always be a comfort & joy to you. The dear boy has such a beautiful nature. Don’t trouble to write to me dear till you feel able. I wish I could see you. Olive.

2
I feel it such a bitter loss to the country that he should have been taken just now. He ?deep sagacity & his ?really ?humane feeling are what we above all need now. No man can just take his place. Cron sends his love to you. He feels as all liberals must the great loss he has been. I hope Magda will arrive soon. One clings so to the all who were loved by the one one has lost.






A. CLASSIFYING INFORMATION

Letter date        [21 December 1897]
Address From    [na]
Address To        []
Who to              [Mary Sauer nee Cloete]



B. EDITED COLLECTION

Editor               []



C. ARCHIVE COLLECTION REFERENCE

Archive name         [Ronald Levine Collection, Johannesburg]
Archive Ref 1         [Levine Collection - Sauer/9]


[LEGEND: Other than the envelope and its date, little of these torn fragment scan be read.]


Mrs Sauer
Cummor
Kenilworth
Cape Town

…; & if ever
[re]turned her to me,
unreadable
would have
to think her
for him. The
to live for him,
… she was trying
loved him
my one man
have had to act
way one couldn’t where
^love ?with another unreadable. If she is mean^

our friends
what has be
in my life.”
message tha
?years unreadable
Or literary & matters if
public in
may say I ma
writing in the

[page/s missing]