The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: oil painting, sale
Record 4 of 334

System Number: 01794
Date: [August 1871/1874][1]
Author: JW
Place: London
Recipient: William Grapel[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler G160
Document Type: ALS

2 Lindsey Houses - Chelsea -

Dear Grapel -

I have just hung up in my drawing room a Nocturne[3] of mine that looks so well that I thought you should have a shot at it if you like - it is perhaps the purest of the lot and you shall have it if you please for 200. gs. with the extraordinary advantage of carrying it away with you! - Come and see it any how -

Even if I were ever so busy the Mother[4] would be delighted to receive you and show you it - [p. 2]

Ever Yours

J A McN Whistler.

[butterfly signature]

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1.  [August 1871/1874]
An early date of 1871 to 1873 is indicated by the form of the butterfly monogram. The address given, 'Lindsey Houses' for 2 Lindsey Row, suggests a date between August 1871 and October 1876. JW made vigorous efforts to sell Nocturnes between 1871 and 1874, and in particular, in the winter of 1872, when he had several on exhibition and at his home (see #07904).

2.  William Grapel
William Grapel (b. 1822), barrister-at-law and collector [more].

3.  Nocturne
Possibly Nocturne in Blue and Gold: Valparaiso Bay (YMSM 76). Although presumably started in 1866, it was not completed until the 1870s. Whistler referred to it in a letter to Alfred Chapman (1839-1917), engineer and collector [more], on 22 June 1874, 'I had once promised to let Grapel have the first choice at the Valparaiso pic[ture] if I ever finish it - but we will see -' (#11251). It is also said to have been offered to Thomas Sutherland (1834-1922), Liberal MP, Chairman of the P. and O. line [more] for 700 gns (Ward, Edwin A., Recollection Savage, London, 1923, p. 265) but was actually bought by Captain Henry Hill (1818-1882), collector [more], before 1875.

4.  mother
Anna Matilda Whistler (1804-1881), née McNeill, JW's mother [more]. JW was using his mother as an intermediary in the sale of his works.