UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 05602
Date: 15 April 1890
Author: Frederick A. Stokes[1]
Place: New York
Recipient: Lewis and Lewis[2]
Place: London
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler S248
Document Type: TLS


[Picture of man reading by a pile of books, and poem[3]]

FREDERICK A. STOKES & BROTHER[4],
SUCCESSORS TO WHITE, STOKES & ALLEN,
PUBLISHERS, BOOKSELLERS, STATIONERS & IMPORTERS,
DEALERS IN WORKS OF ART.
182 FIFTH AVENUE, NEW YORK.
FREDERICK A. STOKES. HORACE H. STOKES.

Frederick A. Stokes Company[5], / Successors

April 15th, 1890.

Messrs. Lewis & Lewis,
10 & 11, Ely Place, Holborn,
London, England.

Dear Sirs:

When we wrote our letter of the 7th inst., we could not, as stated at the time, recollect that we had ever had had any dealings of any nature with Mr. Sheridan Ford[6] the person in question[7].

Yesterday we received a letter from him, in which he refers to our "kind favor of recent date".!

As his letter was dated April 5th, we made immediately a search through our letter-copying-books, for any letter which might have been written by us, and which had escaped our mind.

After a long search, we found a copy of a letter written on September 2nd, 1889, in reply to a letter from him of August 24th last. In his letter of August 24th he offered us "a book of about 200 pages, made up of correspondence of art matters, some of which has already appeared in print, in columns of "London Morning Post", "Pall Mall Gazette", "Vanity Fair", "The World", "Truth", "Athen[a]eum", etc."

He followed this by asking, "On what terms would you be willing to handle the sale in the United States, I supplying the books (p. 2) on this side, your name, of course, appearing as American publishers?"

In reply to this letter we wrote, stating that we would take the sale for this country at our regular terms, "if the book is acceptable to our reader."

At the time of writing our letter to you, and of answering the inquiry made by cable, we had entirely forgotten all about this letter of ours, written to him over seven months ago; and, as we are constantly receiving inquiries as to our terms for publishing books of various natures, we think it natural that a matter of such long standing should have escaped our memory.

In any case, however, we have heard nothing whatever from Mr. Ford this person[8] since his letter of last August, until the present time; and, as he gave us no opportunity to place the book[9] before our reader, and as we never publish any work without a written contract, and without passing upon the merits of the work, in addition, we can still say that his course in the matter has been entirely unauthorized by us.

We are writing to him to-day to this effect.

We trust that you will appreciate the circumstances; and had it (p. 3) not been for the reference made by Mr. Ford to our former letter to him, probably we should not have ever discovered the copy of the letter in question.

Very truly yours,

FREDERICK A. STOKES COMPANY, / BY

Frederick A. Stokes.

PRESIDENT.

P. S. We have notified Mr. Ford the person[10] that we cannot accept the books that he has shipped to us, or allow them to be circulated with our imprint.

Very truly yours,

FREDERICK A. STOKES COMPANY, / BY

Frederick A. Stokes.

PRESIDENT.


This document is protected by copyright.


Notes:

1.  Frederick A. Stokes
Frederick Abbott Stokes (1857-1939), publisher and bookseller [more].

2.  Lewis and Lewis
Sir George Henry Lewis (1833-1911), society lawyer [more]; and George James Graham Lewis (1868-1927), junior partner of Lewis & Lewis, solicitors [more].

3.  poem
"FOR HYM WAS LEVERE HAVE AT HIS BEDDES HEED / TWENTY BOOKES, CLAD IN BLAK OR REED, / THAN ROBES RICHE OR FITHELE OR GAY SAUTRIE." This letterhead appears on both sheets.

4.  BROTHER
Horace Stokes, publisher and bookseller [more].

5.  Frederick A. Stokes Company
Typed over existing letterhead.

6.  Mr. Sheridan Ford
Sheridan Ford (1860-1922), poet, critic, politician and writer on art [more].

7.  the person in question
Amendment made by hand in pencil.

8.  the book
Whistler, James McNeill, The Gentle Art of Making Enemies, ed. Sheridan Ford, Paris, 1890.

9.  this person
Amendment made by hand in pencil.

10.  the person
Amendment made by hand in pencil.