The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 04372
Date: 16 February 1886
Author: Samuel Wreford Paddon[1]
Place: [Redhill, Surrey]
Recipient: JW
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler P11
Document Type: ALS


16 Febry 1886.

My dear Whistler,

I will tell you the "when where & what" of it as fully as I can on a sheet of paper, & when we meet, you shall have it, 'in extenso'.

I allege fraud against Howell[2], in the writ - the action was commenced about a year ago - it appears to me to be on all fours with the early stages of Sir Wm. Abdy[3] against Belt[4], with this difference - I do not sue for a specific amount as Abdy did, & so it is not quite so easy for Howell to confess judgment. His Solicitor[5] has threatened, or rather suggested to me, that if I proceed, his client may become Bankrupt, but this will not deter me - I have about twenty distinct cases & I believe the evidence [p. 2] I am prepared with, will prove each case, up to the hilt. I think it is unfortunate for the Defendant that the Liberty & Jewell[6] matters have been drawn into the case, and they of course will become before the Court. - We have had to serve Liberty Jewell & some twenty or thirty others with subpoenas to produce certain books documents &c. & altogether it will be a most instructive case to those who, having a liking for the antique, expect to pick up "bargains" among the dealers of Regent St & Oxford St.

Liberty has gone to Syria or Timbuctoo, or some where else and would have preferred to give his evidence before a Commission, but I was advised that it was essential that he should give it in the witness box, and in order that this may be, the case has been adjourned to 4 May, otherwise it would have come on in [p. 3] March.

When we meet and if you are sufficiently interested, I will tell you the details of each transaction & the evidence I have to support my allegation that they are frauds:

Meanwhile - with our united kind regards
Believe me
Yours very faithfully

S. Wreford Paddon

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1.  Samuel Wreford Paddon
Samuel Wreford Paddon (b. 1843), diamond merchant and collector [more].

2.  Howell
Charles Augustus ('Owl') Howell (1840? - d.1890), entrepreneur [more]. See also JW to S. W. Paddon, #09355, and Ingle Cooper & Holmes to S. W. Paddon, #02269.

3.  Sir Wm. Abdy
Sir William Neville Abdy (b. 1844), landowner [more].

4.  Belt
Richard Claude Belt (ca 1854 - d.1920), sculptor [more], was sentenced to twelve months imprisonment with hard labour for the fraudulent sale of jewellery to Sir William Abdy; his brother Walter was acquitted, on 15 March 1886.

5.  Solicitor
Possibly Richard Furber (b. ca 1853), solicitor [more]; see #13912.

6.  Liberty & Jewell
Arthur Lasenby Liberty (1843-1917), designer, founder of Liberty and Co. [more], and possibly Dr Coleman Jewell (b. 1852), physician[more].