The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 08632
Date: [March/April 1886?][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: Walter Dowdeswell[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Rare Books and Manuscripts Division
Document Type: ALS

Come to the Vale[3] tomorrow morning at about 10.30 - and the manuscript[4] you will find waiting for you -

Also ask your Father[5] if he goes right on to town, to send down the man at once[6] with more blotting paper - he could not have brought much[7] - for it is all gone[8] - however we have printed a lot he can take back with him - Don't let him be late -

I think it would be well that Crowdy[9] [p. 2] should come down to the Vale and see me -

Do you think you would like to bring him? - tell him about it tomorrow and bring him on Sunday -

[butterfly signature]

The American Engraver Butler[10] has been with me to see the portrait of Lady Archibald[11] and is quite warm about his work -

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1.  [March/April 1886?]
Dated from reference to Venice etchings (see note below) and JW's 'Propositions.'

2.  Walter Dowdeswell
Walter Dowdeswell (1858-1929), art dealer [more], who dealt with many of the arrangements for the forthcoming publication of A Set of twenty-six etchings of Venice, 1886 (the second 'Venice set') (K.196-216, 233-237). (excat 6). The first proofs were delivered on 2 April 1886 (receipt, #00863). This letter appears to relate to another letter from JW to Dowdeswell, #08674.

3.  Vale
JW was then living at No 2, The Vale, Chelsea, known as 'The Pink Palace.'

4.  manuscript
Probably for JW's 'Propositions,' a list of certain principles regarding etchings. The 'Propositions' were issued with each set of Venice etchings. See Whistler, James McNeill, The Gentle Art of Making Enemies, 2nd ed., London and New York, 1892, pp. 76-77.

5.  Father
Charles William Dowdeswell (1832-1915), art dealer [more].

6.  at once
Double underlined.

7.  brought much
JW was at work printing Venice etchings. He had already asked for more blotting paper (see #08674). He seems to have printed a few plates at a time. Although sometimes he only sent single impressions (of San Biagio (K.197), for example), more often, he would send two to three dozen or even more at a time from a variety of plates (see MacDonald, Margaret F., Palaces in the Night Whistler in Venice, Aldershot, 2001, pp. 120-27).

8.  all gone
Double underlined.

9.  Crowdy
Wallace L. Crowdy (fl. 1885-1911), collector and writer on art [more].

10.  Butler
Perhaps Delorme-Butler, engraver, whose wood engraving of Arrangement in Black: La Dame au brodequin jaune - Portrait of Lady Archibald Campbell (YMSM 242), is reproduced in Duret, Théodore, Histoire de J. McN. Whistler et de son oeuvre, Paris, 1904, p. 97.

11.  Lady Archibald
Arrangement in Black: La Dame au brodequin jaune - Portrait of Lady Archibald Campbell (YMSM 242).