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Paulette Nardal

9 octobre 1928, archives Nardal, 61 J, Archives de Martinique - CTM.

3, rue Hébert
Clamart (Seine)

Dear Mr. Garvey,


I hope you had a good crossing and found Mrs. Garvey in good health.
I am sorry to trouble you once more on account of the concert, but I hope you will understand the awkward position in which I find myself with regard to La Dépêche africaine.
I was charged by Miss Clarke to make arrangements with a pianist and a flutist for the concerts. It was understood that Miss Clarke was to pay them. Believing that Mr. Satineau and Moutia knew about it I never thought of mentioning these arrangements to them until the pianist and flutist called for their fee. It was yesterday and fortunately I was at the office. M. Moutia began telling them about the heavy loss the paper had undergone and the things were about to turn wrong when Mr. Satineau arrived. I had realized once more that the paper would not be able to pay the 540 fr[ancs] asked by the two musicians, and taking my responsibility (since it was I who had asked them) I had already offered the 150 fr I had about me just then, promising to send the balance the day after, when Mr. Satineau who was in another room was called and told what I had done. He never accepted my offer, giving me back my money and signed a cheque for the two musicians.
But as I know the state of affairs of La Dépêche africaine and that Mr. Satineau is now spending his own money to pay al the expenses of the concert, it is really with a pang of conscience that I saw him pay these two persons. So, it is as a personal service that I write you to ask you to be kind enough to send over to me the sum stated here above. Of course I do not want to oblige you to do this. I know all the reasons you have to refuse. If I could do this just now, it would be with pleasure that I would give away this sum. I understand that you pay Miss Clarke’s expenses and if she had not asked me I would not have to regret to [do] a service rendered to her. I insist upon the fact that it will be personal service to me, since all things went wrong from the beginning with the paper, more of the parties understanding that other.
However, I must tell you to continue the brief conversation we had at the concert, that it is really on account of Mr. Satineau’s influence that you were able to speak in Paris: the Ministre de l’Intérieur and that of the Colonies would not hear at first of your delivering a speech in France. Of course, you could hire any hall in the capital. Bu they would have managed to prevent you from speaking, as they do for the communists. It is on account of Mr. Satineau’s moderate opinions and the promises he made for you that everything went so well. I can tell you that is was a magnificent success for you and the Parisian newspapers of all opinions could not but recognize that.
To end this too long letter, I can assure that you were completely mistaken about the character of the people of La Dépêche africaine. I am exceedingly sorry that Mr. Satineau cannot speak English because this unfortunate misunderstanding would never have happened.
Believing that I shall receive a favourable answer from you, I am yours sincerely,


Paulette Nardal

P.S. My best regards to Mrs. Garvey, Miss [Eseritch] and Miss Clarke.
On the other side, you will find a detailed account of the musicians’ bill.

I. The flutist asked 150 fr for the concert and 50 fr for the rehearsal (1) and conveyances.
II. The pianist asked 200 fr for the concert, 90 fr for 3 rehearsals (she counts 4 hours for each of them – she lives very far from your hotel) and 50 fr for conveyances.
That is 540 fr

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