The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Wharncliffe, Countess of
Record 2 of 4

System Number: 08148
Date: [1883/1884][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: Thomas Waldo Story[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 2/61/4
Document Type: AL


Just come from the Gaiety [3]with the Signora Bronson[4]! -

I dined with her and her daughter[5] and James Ker's father[6] -

Well Waldo - Of course you are having a high old time and why not - but still I told you I can't be left very much alone - and now the studio is [p. 2] simply too horrid -

The Queen[7] has but a portion 'for the present' of the etchings - later on another batch is to be sent for - all this because of some arrangement with the privy Purse - and meanwhile the cheque has not been sent -

Eldoni[8] was ill for a while and absent - and 'the rest - - - don't matter' - -

On Monday I am off to Wortley[9] - and if we are to go on to Dennisons[10] we must meet some where for I really know nothing geographically about Dennison -

The Bronsons are off on Saturday morning for Venice - charming & delightful and remind one of old times - When shall we go any where Waldo! - This place is the devil - and I am down - down - !!!

Perhaps after the Wharncliffes[11] I may go on to Alfred Chapman's[12] 23 Abercromby Square Liverpool [p. 3] but will meet you if you can make an appointment -

Say to the beautiful people that[13]

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1.  [1883/1884?]
Dated by references to Wortley Hall and to Elden (see below).

2.  Thomas Waldo Story
Thomas Waldo Story (1854-1915), sculptor [more].

3.  Gaiety
Gaiety Theatre, London.

4.  Signora Bronson
Katherine Coleman Bronson (1834-1901), née De Kay [more]. JW had been a frequent visitor to the Bronson home, the Ca' Alvisi, a modest palace with a magnificent position on the Grand Canal opposite Santa Maria della Salute.

5.  her daughter
Edith Bronson (b. 1861), later Countess Rucellai [more].

6.  James Ker's father
Not identified.

7.  The Queen
Victoria (1819-1901), Queen of Great Britain [more]. The Royal Library, Windsor, bought some of JW's etchings; it is not known if the Queen actually saw them, but eventually they were sold by her successor.

8.  Eldoni
Matthew Robinson Elden (1839-1885), artist [more]. He became ill and died in an insane asylum in 1885.

9.  Wortley
Wortley Hall, Sheffield, was the seat of the Earl of Wharncliffe. JW was obviously eager to tell Story of his social success. It is not known if he went there more than once. The exact date of his visit is not known, though he painted one oil there: Note in Green: Wortley (YMSM 303), possibly in 1883 or 1884. He also painted one of the house guests in Gay Paget in the garden of Wortley Hall, Yorkshire (M.854). 'Gay' Paget married Robert George Windsor-Clive (1857-1923), Baron Windsor, later Earl of Plymouth [more].

10.  Dennisons
Possibly William Henry Forester Denison (1834-1900), Earl of Londesborough [more] (cr. 1887) and his wife, Lady Edith Francis Wilhelmina Denison (1838-after 1907), née Somerset, Countess of Londesborough [more], daughter of the 7th Duke of Beaufort (m. 1863).

11.  Wharncliffes
Edward Montagu Stuart Granville Stuart-Wortley (1827-1899), 1st Earl of Wharncliffe [more], and Susan Charlotte Granville (1834-1927), née Lascelles, wife of E. M. S. G. Stuart-Wortley [more].

12.  Alfred Chapman's
Alfred Chapman (1839-1917), engineer and collector [more]. JW was clearly planning to spend some time in the north of England, taking in Yorkshire and Liverpool.

13.  Say to the beautiful people that
The text breaks off abruptly at this point. The letter appears to be incomplete. The handwriting is written side-on to the printed letterhead.