The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 04686
Date: [3 December 1896?][1]
Author: JW
Place: [London]
Recipient: Rosalind Birnie Philip[2]
Place: [Paris]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler P326
Document Type: ALS[3]

I want you, my dear Major - to pack up what I call the Letter book[4] - You know that plain black leather covered writing book in which many letters are pasted or copied and many others are loose -

Make a complete parcel of the book and all it contains, address it and send it - Then get from the studio the picture of the "Studio"[5] [p. 2] that belongs to the Doctor[6] - You know it - or Bunnie[7] does - Take it home in its frame - Then pack also all the blue dress[8] that you have had cleaned, with its cap and stockings - shoes & all that belongs to it - Finally Put in with it also the sealed book and letters and make of it all a complete package of the whole business - nicely and strongly done in thick brown paper well corded -

Then sit down and rest! - Next send for a carriage and taking Louise[9] with you, drive to the Maison Goupil[10] - Boulevard Capucine - close to the Grand Hotel - I don't [know] the number but Goupils is easily found -

Give them the picture (which you need not pack at all) - together with the large parcel - and tell them to send at once both picture and parcel in one case to Monsieur Thomson[11] of their house, 5 Regent Street. for Mr. Whistler,

Say that they will have received also their instructions from himself - Thomson -

Do this tomorrow Major - and all right

[p. 3] Never mind about Keightly[12] - say also to Bunnie that I wish her to in no way notice it -

I am "on it" already!

A bientôt -
With affection to you all

the General.

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1.  [3 December 1896?]
Dated by the references to the sale of a picture (see below).

2.  Rosalind Birnie Philip
Rosalind Birnie Philip (1873-1958), JW's sister-in-law [more]. JW called her 'Major' and himself 'General'.

3.  ALS
The paper has a deep mourning border.

4.  Letter book
She had trouble finding the letter book (see #04685).

5.  picture of the "Studio"
Whistler in his Studio (YMSM 63).

6.  Doctor
William McNeill Whistler (1836-1900), physician, JW's brother [more]. He was in some financial difficulties.

7.  Bunnie
Ethel Whibley (1861-1920), née Philip, JW's sister-in-law [more].

8.  blue dress
JW had made many attempts to paint a woman dressed in blue, the last known being Scherzo in Blue: The Blue Girl (YMSM 226). Some of his more recent pastels involved thin gauze or muslin robes or caps in shades of blue, see for instance Eva and Gladys Carrington seated on a sofa (M.1529), and The Bead Stringers (M.1530), which JW had touched up and sold for his brother (see JW's letter to Dr Whistler, 2 January 1897, #07025).

9.  Louise
Louise, JW's servant at 110 rue du Bac [more].

10.  Maison Goupil
Art dealers.

11.  Monsieur Thomson
David Croal Thomson (1855-1930), art dealer [more].

12.  Keightly
Dr Archibald Keightley (1859-1930), theosophist and physician [more].