The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 00752
Date: 2 November 1901
Author: John James Cowan[1]
Place: Edinburgh
Recipient: JW
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler C253
Document Type: ALS



2nd Novr 1901

My dear Whistler,

I don't want to go for Reid[2] - poor beggar - and I enclose for your information a letter[3] from my lawyers telling the law in Scotland on the matter in question.

I only never spoke to them on the subject until 31st Oct when I got your letter[4].

My thanks to you for Mr Freer's[5] address. I have [p. 2] written to him - there is no hurry in the matter - quoting £2000 for the Thames in Ice[6] and £400 for Mrs Whibley[7].

I shall be very sorry if he accepts! The only points reconciling me to parting with them being that you would like him to have them, and that I ought to turn them into money now.* *(for I require in the way of business & with my large family & expenses!) All the same I know they are always increasing in value!

[p. 3] I am going to get everything I have of your's photographed & will send you copies.

Always Your's sincerely

John J. Cowan

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1.  John James Cowan
John James Cowan (1846-1936), paper manufacturer and collector [more].

2.  Reid
Alexander Reid (1854-1936), Glasgow dealer [more]. JW suspected Reid of receiving works stolen from JW's studio in Paris before July 1901 (see JW to J. J. Cowan, #00746). Cowan had purchased Alice Butt (2) (YMSM 438) and The Bridesmaid (YMSM 487) from Reid in April 1900 for £450 and £135 respectively but later became suspicious of the signature. JW believed that the pictures had been worked on by someone else (#00746).

3.  letter
Black & Menzies to J. J. Cowan, 31 October 1901, #04045.

4.  your letter
JW to J. J. Cowan, #00751.

5.  Mr Freer's
Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919), industrialist, collector and founder of the Freer Gallery of Art [more].

6.  Thames in Ice
The Thames in Ice (YMSM 36). JW had written to Freer advising him to buy The Thames in Ice and Rose and Silver: Portrait of Mrs Whibley (M.1415) (JW to J. J. Cowan, #00751). Freer agreed (see R. Birnie Philip to C. L. Freer, #04819, and C. L. Freer to JW, #01526).

7.  Mrs Whibley
Rose and Silver: Portrait of Mrs Whibley (M.1415).