This letter was published in the Charleston Courier,
August 3, 1859.
Morphy had been in New York since returning from Europe in May and
intended to visit certain cities close by his route home to New
Orleans. But the requests for his appearance were more than he could,
or was willing to, accept. He sent this letter in August, but didn't
return home until November. The members of the Philadelphia Committee
who had planned on honoring Morphy had been hard at work raising money
and making plans never expecting Morphy to decline their offer. When
he did decline, they felt slighted and were very resentful. They had
to return all the money they had collected. Morphy did, in fact, stop
in Philadelphia on his way home and played with several members of the
Athenaeum Club (in fact, there is a photograph of Morphy playing Louis
Elkin there) as well as a 4 board blindfold simul. The letter was to
decline any public ceremonies of banquets.
Professor George Allen,
My Dear Sir,
In my last communication to you I stated it was not in my power to specify
any period at which to visit your city. My engagements here have been
such, that I have, up to this day, found it impossible to determine upon
any definite time for the acceptance of your invitation. In view of this
fact, and for other reasons, which will readily suggest themselves to you,
I feel compelled to decline any public reception in Philadelphia.
I shall, however, avail myself of the earliest opportunity to pay a
friendly and unceremonious visit to the members of the Athenaeum.
With high regard,