Though Julie Palmer Smith was the first author to live at Esperanza, her son-in-law, William Webster Ellsworth, was a well respected author, his career at the Century Company, from its beginning’s as an offshoot of Scribner and ending as Secretary (think CEO), meant that he had a formidable network of connections.

A review of his book ‘A Golden Age of Authors’ published in 1919 by Houghton Mifflin* hints at this network; the review was by Albert Bigelow Paine*: “When the MS. arrived and I saw the size of it, I said, ‘It looks formidable but I’ll read it. I’ll do it for Ellsworth, I’ll do anything for Ellsworth.’  Then after dinner I got my clothes off, got into bed, propped up, and began. I hadn’t read three pages before I realized a remarkable thing, viz: that it was not I doing it for Ellsworth, but Ellsworth doing it for me, by the Great Inventor of Letters, yes! I was simply eating it up. I was enthralled, enslaved. I couldn’t stop. I read till late, late (I am an early bird) and at five thirty the next morning I was at it again. It was not a big MS. any more, it was too little.’

A much more interesting, and honest, book review than many!

*He had parted ways with Century Company a few years earlier, following a rather nasty personality clash with the new editors brought in after Richard Gilder’s death.