The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Boehm, Joseph Edgar
Record 16 of 36

System Number: 08127
Date: [November 1881?][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: Joseph Edgar Boehm[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 2/57/2
Document Type: ALS[3]

148, NEW BOND ST. W.

Here my dear Spuch we have the whole story of the Painter Etcher Plot[4]!

Read the Extracts[5] from the Press first - and my letter in which I fancy the "Brother in law"! is abgefinished![6] .


J A McN. Whistler

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [November 1881?]
Dated from reference to pamphlet and Painter Etchers' Society (see note below).

2.  Joseph Edgar Boehm
Joseph Edgar Boehm (1834-1890), sculptor [more]. JW nicknames him 'Spuch'.

3.  ALS
Written at right-angles to printed address.

4.  Painter Etcher Plot
A reference to an incident between JW, Francis Seymour Haden (1818-1910), surgeon and etcher, JW's brother-in-law [more], and the newly formed Painter Etcher's Society. In the spring of 1881, the Society held an exhibition at the Hanover Gallery. However, when Frank Duveneck (1848-1919), painter, etcher and art teacher [more], submitted three Venice etchings, Haden (who was President of the Society) suspected that they were in fact by JW. Anxious to compare the etchings with those that JW had been printing for the Fine Art Society, Haden, Alphonse Legros (1837-1911), painter, etcher and art teacher [more], and Dr Edward Hamilton (1815 or 1816-1903), doctor of medicine and print collector [more], paid a visit to the Society's gallery. JW was indignant when he heard of the visit, regarding it as an attack on his artistic integrity. A lengthy correspondence ensued. This was eventually published by JW in the pamphlet Whistler, James McNeill, The Piker Papers. The Painter-Etchers' Society and Mr. Whistler, London, 1881.

5.  Extracts
The pamphlet appeared in several forms: 'Extracts from the Press' refers the correspondence that was published alongside two articles from the Cuckoo (see 'A Storm in an Aesthetic Teacup,' The Cuckoo: The News and Gossip of the Day, 12 April 1881; 'Mr Whistler and the Painter Etchers,' 30 April 1881).

6.  abgefinished
A mock Germanic form of past participle.