The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Whittemore, John Howard
Record 5 of 5

System Number: 06292
Date: 30 December 1901
Author: Julian Alden Weir[1]
Place: New York
Recipient: JW
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W286
Document Type: ALS

11 East 12th St
New York

Decr 30th 1901

My dear Whistler

This is to wish you a Happy New Year & to congratulate you on your beautiful picture the Portrait[2] that Ken[n]edy[3] has, a beauty, he had it exhibited in his Gallery & I could see it for about sixty feet & I was surprised & astonished to find it carried just as well at that distance, it is certai[n]ly a great work having all the qualities of a masterpiece

[p. 2] I am glad to hear that the person who owns your Woman in white[4] has been the fortunate pos[se]sser of this canvas - I was regretting to a painter that I had failed to get the woman in white for the Metropolitan museum owing to one S. P. A.[5] & he said that he (SPA[)] had referred to the ocasion & said that at that time (which was only three or four years ago.) that better pictures of Mr W. could be had cheaper & that he was now aware that he had made a [p. 3] mistake, not much satisfaction in his acknowledging his error in judgement, but any art dealer thinks he knows it all (especially in London)[.] I wanted to send an artistic expression of some kind to Her Bode[6] who was so kind & polite to me in Berlin, & unlike all the other[s] refused to take any fee, so I sent him a fine impression of one of your etchings[.] Why cannot you print when in the vein some of your old plates of Holland & Venice, but you have I know all you [p. 4] want of fun in painting[.] I wish you would do me the favor to send me a photo. of yourself like the one you gave Monet[7] -

Write me about the book[,] I have forgotten the title which you wanted me to look up[.] I shall be glad to do it for you. I have been laid up with a bad cold for the past ten days & the thought of a few lines to you seemed quite an idea. Make my kind regards to your charming Sister in Law[8]. & hoping you will dispatch more of the same canvases over here good for sick men[9]

believe me sincer[e]ly Yours

J. Alden Weir

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1.  Julian Alden Weir
Julian Alden Weir (1852-1919), painter and etcher [more].

2.  Ken[n]edy
Edward Guthrie Kennedy (1849-1932), dealer with H. Wunderlich and Co., New York [more].

3.  the Portrait
Mother of Pearl and Silver: The Andalusian (YMSM 378), sold to Arthur Harris Whittemore (1864-1927), businessman and collector [more], by 1 May 1900. There is some dispute about whether it was Harris or his father, John Howard Whittemore (1837-1910), businessman and collector, who owned it at this time (see the National Gallery of Art website,

4.  Woman in white
Symphony in White, No. I: The White Girl (YMSM 38), also owned by Harris Whittemore.

5.  S. P. A.
Samuel Putnam Avery (1822-1904), print-publisher, collector and philanthropist [more].

6.  Her Bode
Possibly Leopold Bode (1831-1906), artist [more].

7.  Monet
Claude Monet (1840-1926), artist [more].

8.  Sister in Law
Rosalind Birnie Philip (1873-1958), JW's sister-in-law [more], or Ethel Whibley (1861-1920), née Philip, JW's sister-in-law [more].

9.  good for sick men
Added by * from the foot of the page.