Woodrow Wilson to William J. Hampton




Woodrow Wilson writes William J Hampton and expresses his love for his mother.


Gilder Lehrman Collection, New York Historical Society, New York


Bien cher Ami

I am sure that you will not have misunderstood my long delay in replying to your letter of the twenty-third of July last. It has been due to an extraordinary pressure of public business not only, but also to a feeling that I really did not know how to write an adequate answer. It is very hard for me to speak of what my mother was without colouring the whole estimate with the deep love that fills my heart whenever I think of her; but, while others cannot have seen her as I did, I am sure that everyone who knew her at all must have felt the extraordinary quiet force of her character, must have felt also the charm of her unusual grace and refinement, and must have been aware of the clear-eyed, perceiving mind that lay behind her frank grey eyes. They were not always grey. They were of that strange, changeable colour which so often goes with strong character and varied ability. She was one of the most remarkable personrs I have ever known. She was so reserved that only those of her own household can have known how lovable she was, though every friend knew how loyal and steadfast she was. I seem to feel still the touch of her hand and the sweet steadying influences of her wonderful character. I thank God to have had such a mother!

Very sincerely Yours,
Woodrow Wilson

Original Format





Wilson, Woodrow, 1856-1924, “Woodrow Wilson to William J. Hampton,” 1917 September 15, WWP15050, Gilder-Lehrman Institute for American History Woodrow Wilson Documents, Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum, Staunton, Virginia.