The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 09692
Date: 10 July [1892][1]
Author: JW
Place: Paris
Recipient: Edward Guthrie Kennedy[2]
Place: London
Repository: New York Public Library
Call Number: E. G. Kennedy I/27
Credit Line: Edward Guthrie Kennedy Papers / Manuscripts and Archives Division / The New York Public Library / Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations
Document Type: ALS[3]

33. Rue de Tournon. Paris.

Sunday - July 10. '1892'

Dear Mr. Kennedy -

You have been most kind and delightful, in the midst of all your hurry & occupation, to take this trouble about me with the Chicago Officials[4] - It will I am sure be all to the good - for really we are most anxious to have a good show over there is we have any - and it would be too foolish to miss it - In the way of etchings, of course we can be simply perfect - Mr Mansfield[5] has promised to give us every help - and by that time I trust we may have grand proofs of these new Paris ones[6] - and others -

Dont forget to put down in your notes, à propos of Chicago, the pastels of Mansfield, Freer[7], Hecker[8], & Mrs Jack Gardner[9] -

Of the oil paintings more when the time comes -

Meanwhile I shall write to Capt. McCormick[10] as you suggest - [p. 2] I am afraid there may be some truth in the story of the unanswered invitation to dinner! - but I "disremember"! -

Your letter about the interview with the Director[11] of the Fine Arts Society, and Mr Browne[12] [sic] of Surbiton, Virginia Water etc - was a great joy to us! - Right you are! - cold as a fish is Huish - and an ungrateful lot -

He sent me a letter however of official thanks, and by the same post[13], a bill from the Society for one pound odd !!!!! for some past account! Quaint - wasn't it? - So full of tact and graceful - But you see these Britons have no sense of humour - unless it's bad perhaps - who knows? -

They might surely have left their little bills for some other moment, don't you think? - but they couldn't possibly do a pretty thing without spoiling it - It is their fate to be ridiculous - and this attempt to be gracious, on the part of Mr. Huish & Mr. Browne of the Fine Arts Society was ruined at the outset - which must have greatly distressed Mr Browne of Dulwich, Surbiton & Virginia Water!! -

As to the ready lying I am glad you saw that - I believe Mr. Browne of Bond Street, expert salesman etc. will bring the pale hairs of Mr. Browne of Virginia Water and Surbiton with sorrow to the grave - and on his tombstone he shall put "Here rests Ernest Browne of Dulwich Surbiton and the outskirts of Virginia Water - Browne of the Fine Arts lies in Bond Street still" -

If you can find time for a line I should wish to know how the proofs turn out after the Custom House outrage - Also what did Huish say about the new prices of these last states? Did he see that they should be equivalent to say the least - though I think even more than, my own later etchings? I mean that of course it would never do to ask less than 15 gs for a "Doorway[14]" or "The Beggars[15]" - or the "Traghetto[16]" - Some of the finer proofs ought to be 18 or by and bye 20 gs -

All right about Richards[17] - We will ship the pictures[18] off from here, without glass, and if there be any further details in the way of care to be taken, or any wish of yours, let us know. Of course I will see to the American Consul freeing them of duty etc. -

And now we wish you a prosperous and a jolly crossing - and every possible luck - Also we exhort you to remember that you have become in a way a great Whistlerian Head Centre ! and to disport yourself with the sweet tongued gentleness and humility that are the characteristics of the great "outsider" whose colors you carry! -

[p. 3] We shall further drink your best health and safe return! - that you may see the studio in its glory and take your place in the garden again - which you have in its glory and take your place in the garden again - which you have inaugurated -

Bon Voyage! - from both[19] of us

J McN Whistler

[butterfly signature]

This document is protected by copyright.


E. G. Kennedy. Esq.
care of Messrs Lauser[20] -
Print Sellers etc.
25. Garrick Street
Covent Garden
London .
[postmark:] PARIS / GARE DU NORD / [...] 10 / JUIL / 92
[postmark on verso:] LONDON. W. C. / C. X. / 8 A / JY 11 / 92


1.  10 July [1892]
Dated from the postmark. The year '1892' was added at the top of p. 1 in an unknown hand.

2.  Edward Guthrie Kennedy
Edward Guthrie Kennedy (1849-1932), dealer with H. Wunderlich and Co., New York [more]. He had written to JW on 9 July 1892, #07197. The firm's logo is printed at the top of p. 1 and p. 3.

3.  ALS
Written in purple ink on squared paper. The envelope is green.

4.  Chicago
For World's Columbian Exposition, Department of Fine Arts, Chicago, 1893.

5.  Paris ones
For example, Newspaper-stall, Rue de Seine (K.432) and Café Corazza, Palais Royale (K.436).

6.  Mr Mansfield
Howard Mansfield (1849-1938), New York lawyer, print collector [more]. he owned a lot of pastels and drawings (M.335, 355, 363, 373, 379, 425-26, 447, 476, 530, 536-37, 695, 747) plus the recently acquired The Japanese Dress (M.1227).

7.  Freer
Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919), industrialist, collector and founder of the Freer Gallery of Art [more], had recently acquired The Blue Dress (M.468) and Harmony in Blue and Violet (M.1076).

8.  Hecker
Col. Frank J. Hecker (1846-1927), partner of C. L. Freer, Michigan and Peninsular Car Company [more]. It is not known what pastel he owned, but he had one watercolour, Grey and Silver - Liverpool (M.913).

9.  Mrs Jack Gardner
Isabella Stewart Gardner (1840-1924), née Stewart, collector [more], owned Blue and Violet. Lapis Lazuli (M.1070) and The Violet Note (M.1081).

10.  Capt. McCormick
Robert Sanderson McCormick (1849-1919), diplomat and politician [more]. He was the official representative of the World's Columbian Exhibition in London, 1892-93.

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

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

13.  by the same post
Double underlined. Huish had written on 4 July 1892, #01251.

14.  Doorway
The Doorway (K.188).

15.  The Beggars
The Beggars (K.194).

16.  Traghetto
The Traghetto, No.1 (K.190).

17.  pictures
The Last of Old Westminster (YMSM 39), Battersea Reach (YMSM 45), and Variations in Flesh Colour and Green: The Balcony (YMSM 56).

18.  Richards
Stephen Richards (b. ca 1845), picture restorer [more].

19.  both
JW and Beatrix Whistler (1857-1896), née Beatrice Philip, artist [more].

20.  Lauser
Gustave Lauser (b. ca 1841), London print-seller [more].