The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 07857
Date: [12 November 1897][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: Joseph Pennell[2]
Place: London
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 272/10/8
Document Type: ALS[3]

110 Rue du Bac -

My dear Pennell -

I have had a bad time of it so far - The cold you saw me begin in London, has put me to bed here - and I am in the hands of the Doctor who says I have been playing nice tricks with my health! Or rather that I have had a narrow squeak of it -

However - - Give a man time - and [p. 2] he can knock a man down - even if it be himself! -

Now you said to let you know if there were any thing you could do for me -

Well - Yes - I think it would be very excellent indeed if you get for me at once a written statement from Van Wisselingh[4] to the effect that the portrait of Sir W Eden's daughter[5] was offered to him for sale - I want Pauling[6] to go with you, as he did in the Thompson[7] case and get the whole thing properly attested - Also the Fine Arts Society - either Mr Brown[8] or Huish[9] to give their help by statement of the same kind - for of course the picture must have been offered to them - Mr Dunn[10] you must beware of - as I believe the Baronet sends him game!

See Pauling at once from me -

What did you pick up at the Chelsea Art Club?

Do write anything & everything

Give kindest regards to Mrs Pennell[11]

[butterfly signature]

This document is protected by copyright.


Joseph Pennell Esq
14. Buckingham Street
Strand -
[postmark:] PARIS-80 / R DU BAC / E 12 / NOV / 97


1.  [12 November 1897]
Dated from the postmark.

2.  Joseph Pennell
Joseph Pennell (1860-1926), printer and illustrator, JW's biographer [more].

3.  ALS
The stationery has a mourning border.

4.  Van Wisselingh
Elbert Jan Van Wisselingh (b. ca 1848), art dealer [more].

5.  portrait of Sir W Eden's daughter
In October 1893, Sir William Eden (1849-1915), painter and collector [more], who disliked the portrait of his daughter by John Macallan Swan (1847-1908), animal painter and sculptor [more], asked D. C. Thomson to dispose of it (see Eden to Thomson, #01032). However, Van Wisselingh claimed that the painting had not been offered there, but to the Fine Art Society: 'At the request of Mr Brown, the manager I went to see it, and an offer was invited. I was given to understand that it could be got for less than the price paid.' (E. J. Van Wisselingh to JW, 3 November 1897, #07105).

6.  Pauling
A misspelling of Sidney Southgate Pawling (d. 1922), business partner of the publisher W. H. Heinemann [more].

7.  Thompson
A misspelling of David Croal Thomson (1855-1930), art dealer [more].

8.  Mr Brown
Ernest George Brown (1853 or 1854-1915), assistant manager at the Fine Art Society [more].

9.  Huish
Marcus Bourne Huish (1843 - d.1921), barrister, writer and art dealer, Director of the Fine Art Society [more].

10.  Mr Dunn
A. Homeyer Dunn, employee of the Fine Art Society.

11.  Mrs Pennell
Elizabeth Robins Pennell (1855-1936), née Robins, JW's biographer [more].