The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Frances Louisa Boehm, 1837-1890

Nationality: English
Date of Birth: 1837
Place of Birth: Liverpool
Date of Death: 1890
Place of Death:


Fanny Louisa Boehm, née Boteler, was the wife of the sculptor Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm. She has sometimes mistakenly been referred to as 'Frances'. Her parents, who were not married at the time of her birth were Frances Hunter and Alfred Boteler, a merchant. She had an older brother, Frederic Lawrence, who later became a solictor in London.


JW and the Boehms were on very friendly terms. J. E. Boehm referred to JW affectionately as 'Mac', and JW referred to him as 'Spuch'. J. E. Boehm produced a terracotta bust of Whistler in 1872, and in 1878 Whistler intended to paint Boehm's portrait [#00499], but the painting was never carried out. JW asked him to appear as a witness on his behalf at the Ruskin v Whistler trial of November 1878 [#00322]. In 1879 Boehm agreed to execute decorations for Whistler's White House, the Metropolitan Board of Works having insisted on the inclusion of certain stone mouldings to enliven the facade. However, these designs were not executed.

Fanny Boehm died in 1890, having 'suffered terribly for the last 2 years'. JW and Beatrix sent a letter of condolence [#10368].


UK census 1881 from (accessed 2004); Soros, Susan Weber (ed.), E. W. Godwin: Aesthetic Movement Architect and Designer, New Haven and London, 1999; Stocker, Mark, 'Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm', The Grove Dictionary of Art Online, ed. L. Macy, accessed 30 November 2001,