The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 05683
Date: 9 February 1892
Author: David Croal Thomson[1]
Place: London
Recipient: JW
Place: [Paris]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler T28
Document Type: ALS

[royal coat of arms]

116 & 117, NEW BOND STREET. W.


9 Feby 1892.

Dear Sir,

I write to you in detail respecting the present position for the exhibition[2]. I was in Scotland when your telegram was answered.

Enclosed is a list of what is actually promised.

In addition Mr J. C. Potter[3] offers us other 3 viz The White Girl, Waves Biarritz, & Chelsea or Battersea Bridge. Kindly say if we may accept any or all of these.

[p. 2] The only picture delivered here is Mr Orchars[4] 'Grey & Silver Chelsea Embankment.'

Please let us know if we require authority from each owner to clean & varnish each picture or if you have arranged for that yourself with the owners. Mr Chapman[5] does not seem to like the idea of new frames.

Lady Meux[6] has not been here so far as we know & in any case she has not revealed herself or spoken to anyone. In effect we do not think she has called yet

We write to day to Shannon[7] & to Mrs Peter Taylor[8] at Brighton.

Mr Ionides[9] has promised 'Valparaiso'. Has he any others you want?

Mrs Leylands[10] Nocturne not sent but we can [p. 3] have it at once if required. Kindly instruct us.

The Hon & Mrs Wyndham[11] & Mr Harrison[12] have been written to by us, but have not answered yet.

Mr Chapman has a Battersea & a British Channel we may have if you like.

At Mr Chapmans suggestion we wrote to Mr Fowler[13] about his picture, but cannot find who he is. We wrote the Steam plough people[14] & they answer that none of their partners have such a picture

W. C. Alexander[15] has not replied. Is he also the owner of 'Miss Alexander?' This we should like to have very very much

[p. 4] Mons. Duret[16] has not replied.

Otto Goldschmidt[17] - we cannot find. We wrote a certain O. G. & he replies he is not the owner[.] Can you help us to identify him. He refers us to a Sir Fred. Milbank[18]

Mr Johnston[19] has written from America in reply to my letter that he does not see his way to settle any thing at present.

Up to now there are only 10 promised, but there are 3 more from Mr Potter & 2 from Mr Chapman if you want them.

Enclosed is a note from Dr Cavafy[20][;] shall we do any thing more

We should like to have say 4 portraits in the room, Sarasate[21] &c Is this possible? What about the Cards & the Catalogue. The envelope used for this is a convenient size. If you agree we can commence writing the addresses

Yours faithfully

D. C. Thomson

J. McN. Whistler Eq[22]

Is it[23] any use asking Prinsep[24] for the late Leylands[25] pictures.

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  David Croal Thomson
David Croal Thomson (1855-1930), art dealer [more]; see JW's reply, #08216).

2.  exhibition
Thomson was organising JW's major retrospective exhibition Nocturnes, Marines and Chevalet Pieces, Boussod, Valadon & Cie, Goupil Gallery, London, 1892.

3.  Mr J. C. Potter
John Charles Potter (1854-1920), wallpaper manufacturer and collector [more], owned Blue and Silver: Blue Wave, Biarritz (YMSM 41), Symphony in White, No. 2: The Little White Girl (YMSM 52) and A White Note (YMSM 44).

4.  Mr Orchars
James Guthrie Orchar (1825-1888), engineer and collector [more], owned Nocturne: Grey and Silver - Chelsea Embankment, Winter (YMSM 205).

5.  Mr Chapman
Alfred Chapman (1839-1917), engineer and collector [more].

6.  Lady Meux
Lady Valerie Susan ('Susie') Meux (1847-1910), née Langdon, collector and patroness [more]. Harmony in Pink and Grey: Portrait of Lady Meux (YMSM 229) was on view in the gallery.

7.  Shannon
James Jebusa Shannon (1862-1923), genre and portrait painter [more], lent Sea and Rain (YMSM 65).

8.  Mrs Peter Taylor
Mrs Peter Taylor, wife of the collector [more], owned Symphony in Grey and Green: The Ocean (YMSM 72).

9.  Mr Ionides
Alexander Constantine Ionides (1810-1890), shipping merchant and collector [more].

10.  Mrs Leylands
Frances Leyland (1836-1910), née Dawson [more], lent Nocturne (YMSM 114).

11.  Hon & Mrs Wyndham
Madeline Caroline Frances Eden Wyndham (1835-1920), née Campbell, artist [more] owned Nocturne: Grey and Gold - Westminster Bridge (YMSM 145).

12.  Mr Harrison
Robert Hichens Camden Harrison (1837?-1924), collector [more], owned Nocturne: Blue and Gold - Old Battersea Bridge (YMSM 140).

13.  Mr Fowler
F. M. Fowler, a collector, patron of JW [more].

14.  Steam plough people
Not identified.

15.  W. C. Alexander
William Cleverly Alexander (1840-1916), banker and patron [more], had commissioned Harmony in Grey and Green: Miss Cicely Alexander (YMSM 129).

16.  Mons. Duret
Théodore Duret (1838-1927), art critic and collector [more], owned but did not lend Nocturne: Grey and Silver (YMSM 156).

17.  Otto Goldschmidt
Otto Goldschmidt (1829-1907), pianist, conductor, composer and impresario [more], owned Nocturne (YMSM 153).

18.  Sir Fred. Milbank
Sir Frederick Milbank (1820-1898), sportsman [more].

19.  Mr Johnston
Probably John Graver Johnson (1841-1917), lawyer and collector [more].

20.  Dr Cavafy
Dr John Cavafy (ca 1839-1901), physician and collector, son of G. J. Cavafy [more].

21.  Sarasate
Arrangement in Black: Portrait of Señor Pablo de Sarasate (YMSM 315), of Pablo de Sarasate y Navascues (1844-1908), violinist [more].

22.  J. McN. Whistler Eq
Written at the foot of p. 3.

23.  Is it ... pictures
Added in space at top of p. 1.

24.  Prinsep
Valentine Cameron Prinsep (1836-1904), painter and writer [more].

25.  Leylands
Frederick Richards Leyland (1832-1892), ship-owner and art collector [more].