The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Cassatt, Alexander Johnston
Record 6 of 6

System Number: 08641
Date: [8/15 July 1887?][1]
Author: JW
Place: [London]
Recipient: Dowdeswell and Dowdeswell[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Rare Books and Manuscripts Division
Document Type: ALS

Messrs Dowdeswell & Sons -


First I wish to acknowledge the delicate discretion on your part in the matter of the printing of the promised proofs[3] - You have not nagged and worried about them - for which considering the great pressure of work, I am grateful - and in return have great pleasure in telling you that I forgot not my promise, and that the proofs are all printed - on exquisite old Dutch paper[4] - and very beautiful they look - You can send for them [p. 2] tomorrow - here at the studio - say at about 1. o'clock -

You will have to press them - most carefully - as I am not at present provided with the proper means, and this I am sorry for, as I doubt if you will do it as perfectly as the proofs deserve!!! - Unless you get in Howell[5] to do it for you - ! - I know no one alive who could so daintily manage it -

Now about Mrs Sassatt's[6] [sic] picture -

Mr Dowdeswell père[7], promised me to telegraph to Messrs Spence[8] Liverpool, asking if case from Whistler for Cassatt America shall be forwarded to them -

Please do this and prepay their answer -

Cassatt's address is:
A. J. Cassatt. Esq.[9]
Chiswold -
Haverford Cottage P. Q.
Montgomery Co. P. A.
U. S. A.

[top of p. 1] [butterfly signature]

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [8/15 July 1887?]
Dated by reference to etchings (see below).

2.  Dowdeswell & Dowdeswell
Print dealers and publishers in London.

3.  promised proofs
JW completed printing A Set of twenty-six etchings of Venice, 1886 (the second 'Venice set') (K.196-216, 233-237). (excat 6) in July 1887 (see JW's receipt, 16 July 1887, #00891).

4.  old Dutch paper
Old laid paper, some with Dutch watermarks, was used by JW for some, but by no means all, the etchings. It had a good colour and texture and took the ink well.

5.  Howell
Charles Augustus ('Owl') Howell (1840? - d.1890), entrepreneur [more]. He had encouraged JW's etchings in the 1870s.

6.  Mrs Sassatt's
Maria Lois Cassatt (1847-1920), née Buchanan, wife of A. J. Cassatt [more]. Arrangement in Black, No. 8: Portrait of Mrs Cassatt (YMSM 250) was painted in the Spring of 1883 and exhibited Winter Exhibition, Society of British Artists, London, 1885-1886, although still not finished to JW's satisfaction.

7.  Mr Dowdeswell père
Charles William Dowdeswell (1832-1915), art dealer [more].

8.  Spence
Possibly packers and shippers.

9.  A. J. Cassatt. Esq.
Alexander Johnston Cassatt (1839-1906), engineer, collector [more]. See JW's letter to A. J. Cassatt about the portrait (#09014).