Much more might be said regarding this great man, but we must now leave him to the active duties of a busy and useful life, surrounded by his family in the comforts of an English home and enjoying the true friendship of the philosopher, the historian, and the poet. Among the most intimate in this list was Sir Walter Scott—the friend of Mrs. Bailie, the foster mother of Sir Howard. Doubtless the name of Douglas was sufficient to awaken in the mind of the Scottish bard a feeling worthy of the friendship of Sir Howard. Together they spent many hours in conversing upon the scenes which had formed subjects for the poet’s pen and awakened a deep veneration for the legends of Scottish lore. Perhaps in no other way can we better pay a parting tribute to the memory of Sir Howard Douglas than by inserting the following letter which had been forwarded when the latter had arrived from New Brunswick:
“Abbotsford, Near Melrose, 21st July, 1829.
“My Dear Sir Howard,—
“I have just received your most welcome letter and write to express my earnest wish and hope that, as I have for the present no Edinburgh establishment, you will, for the sake of auld lang syne, give me the pleasure of seeing you here for as much time as you can spare me. There are some things worth looking at, and we have surely old friends and old stories enough to talk over. We are just thirty-two miles from Edinburgh. Two or three public coaches pass us within a mile, and I will take care to have a carriage meet you at Melrose Brigley End, if you prefer that way of travelling. Who can tell whether we may ever, in such different paths of life, have so good an opportunity of meeting? I see no danger of being absent from this place, but you drop me a line if you can be with us, and take it for granted you hardly come amiss. I have our poor little [illegible] here. He is in very indifferent health, but no immediate danger is apprehended. You mention your daughter. I would be most happy if she should be able to accompany you.
“Always, my dear
Most truly yours,
Here is an instance of genuine simplicity and hearty friendship existing between men of like nature. The true greatness of Sir Howard was appreciated by one whose themes of poetic beauty and fervent patriotism kindle a glow of inspiration that will burn undimmed while time shall last. And now we close this chapter by bidding the noble, great and good Sir Howard Douglas a fond farewell!