REPLY TO McCLURE'S MAGAZINE
Legislature, and was nominated for Congress, but
died before the election. McClure's Magazine calls my
youngest brother, George Sullivan Baker, "a workman in
a Tilton woolen mill." As a matter of fact, he was joint
partner with Alexander Tilton, and together they owned a
large manufacturing establishment in Tilton, N. H. His
military title of Colonel came from appointment on the
staff of the Governor of New Hampshire. My oldest
brother, Samuel D. Baker, carried on a large business in
Regarding the allegation by McClure's Magazine that all
the family, "excepting Albert, died of cancer," I will
say that there was never a death in my father's family
reported by physician or post-mortem examination as
caused by cancer.
McClure's Magazine says that "the quarrels between
Mary, a child ten years old, and her father, a gray-haired
man of fifty, frequently set the house in an uproar,"
and adds that these "fits" were diagnosed by Dr. Ladd
as "hysteria mingled with bad temper." My mother
often presented my disposition as exemplary for her other
children to imitate, saying, "When do you ever see
Mary angry?" When the first edition of Science and
Health was published, Dr. Ladd said to Alexander Tilton:
"Read it, for it will do you good. It does not surprise
me, it so resembles the author."
I will relate the following incident, which occurred later
in life, as illustrative of my disposition: -
While I was living with Dr. Patterson at his country
home in North Groton, N. H., a girl, totally blind, knocked
at the door and was admitted. She begged to be allowed
to remain with me, and my tenderness and sympathy were
such that I could not refuse her. Shortly after, however,
my good housekeeper said to me: "If this blind girl stays
with you, I shall have to leave; she troubles me so much."
It was not in my heart to turn the blind girl out, and so
I lost my housekeeper.
My reply to the statement that the clerk's book shows
that I joined the Tilton Congregational Church at the age
of seventeen is that my religious experience seemed to
culminate at twelve years of age. Hence a mistake may
have occurred as to the exact date of my first church
The facts regarding the McNeil coat-of-arms are as
Fanny McNeil, President Pierce's niece, afterwards
Mrs. Judge Potter, presented me my coat-of-arms, saying
that it was taken in connection with her own family
coat-of-arms. I never doubted the veracity of her gift.
I have another coat-of-arms, which is of my mother's
ancestry. When I was last in Washington, D. C., Mrs.
Judge Potter and myself knelt in silent prayer on the
mound of her late father, General John McNeil, the
hero of Lundy Lane.
Notwithstanding that McClure's Magazine says, "Mary
Baker completed her education when she finished Smith's
grammar and reached long division in arithmetic," I was
called by the Rev. R. S. Rust, D.D., Principal of the
Methodist Conference Seminary at Sanbornton Bridge, to
supply the place of his leading teacher during her temporary
Regarding my first marriage and the tragic death of my
husband, McClure's Magazine says: "He eorge Washington
Glover] took his bride to Wilmington, South Carolina,
and in June, 1844, six months after his marriage, he
died of yellow fever. He left his young wife in a miserable
plight. She was far from home and entirely without
money or friends. Glover, however, was a Free Mason,
and thus received a decent burial. The Masons also paid