The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 10728
Date: 23 July [1870][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: James Anderson Rose[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 2/46/23
Document Type: ALS[3]

2 Lindsey Row
Chelsea -

Saturday July 23

Dear Rose

What about the house[4] for me? -

I am as I told you anxious to have it and fear that if any delay occurs it may slip through my fingers - The thing that I want to do of course is to buy the place -

£1500 is what they ask you know - What is the next step? do you think of making him an offer? and if so of [p. 2] how much? 1000 - or 1200? and can you let me hear that the matter is in progress[5]? -

Also can you tell me of any one that would advance the money? In short I want to buy the place - pay the interest - and the principle by degrees -

Can you or rather will you my dear Rose manage the affair for me and carry it through right off -

With many thanks [p. 3]
Ever yours sincerely

J A McN Whistler

[p. 4] 'Whistler[6] - No date'

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1.  23 July [1870]
Dated from almanac.

2.  James Anderson Rose
James Anderson Rose (1819-1890), solicitor [more].

3.  ALS
'23' in an unknown hand at top left corner of p. 1.

4.  house
JW was hoping to negotiate the lease of Merton Villa, a house at 278a King's Road Chelsea. It appears that he planned to build a studio in its extensive grounds (see A. M. Whistler to J. A. Rose, #12215). He had asked Rose to act on his behalf. Although he wished to purchase the full lease at £1500, for thirty-eight and a half years there was an alternative, an annual lease at £130 (see JW to J. A. Rose, #11969). Coincidentally, Beatrix Whistler (1857-1896), née Beatrice Philip, artist [more], was living at Merton Villa, 280a King's Road at the time of her first marriage (to Edward William Godwin (1833-1886), architect and designer [more]) in January 1876 (see press-cutting, #06572). It was the family home of the Birnie-Philips. JW made an etching of the house, Merton Villa, Chelsea (K.277) in 1887, the year before his marriage to Beatrix Godwin.

5.  progress
JW's efforts to secure the house were unsuccessful. Rose was probably unable to negotiate a price he could afford. In the end, he remained at Lindsey Row until June 1878. See also #08912, #10727, #11851, #11852.

6.  Whistler
'Whistler ... date' written in another hand, probably that of J. A. Rose, at right-angles in top left-hand corner of p. 4.