The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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System Number: 00196
Date: [January/June 1868][1]
Author: Thomas Armstrong[2]
Place: [London]
Recipient: JW
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler A195
Document Type: ALS


22 Edwards Square

Dear Jim,

In a good map of the province of Ulster you will find marked, somewhere in the north-east corner of Lough Neagh[3], "Whistler's Castle" - near the more important place, Magherafelt[4] - in [La?] the parish church of this which the Irish Whistlers are buried - The rector[5] or vicar of the parish will give such information as he possesses but the best man to apply to is a surgeon of your name,
Thomas Whistler[6], A. B., F. R. C. S.
County Wicklow
[p. 2][7] who has, I believe, taken some pains about the history of the family and is glad to communicate what he knows. In a "Gazetteer" of Ireland you will find an account of the immense properties[8] held by the Whistler's [sic] on long lease from one of the London Companies which after-wards became most valuable - There was a Randolphus Whistler[9] who is buried at Magherafelt who died in 1657 but I am not sure if he was the first of the family who settled in Ireland - I am sorry I cannot come to you for I am engaged -

Yours ever

Tom Armstrong

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [January/June 1868]
Dated from T. L. Whistler to JW, 17 July 1868 (#06975), and from the address: Armstrong moved to Charlotte Square in 1869, and later to Sheffield Gardens.

2.  Thomas Armstrong
Thomas Armstrong (1832-1911), artist and Director of Art, South Kensington Museum [more].

3.  Lough Neagh
The largest lake in Ireland bordering counties Armagh, Tyrone, Down, Derry and Antrim.

4.  Magherafelt
Magherafelt, County Armagh. There was a monument to a Whistler family ancestor at the site (see T. L. Whistler to JW, #06975, #06976, C. K. Irwin to George William Whistler (1822-1869), engineer, JW's half-brother [more], #02371). However, JW was not directly related to this Irish branch of the Whistlers.

5.  rector
Charles King Irwin (1837-1915), clergyman [more].

6.  Thomas Whistler
Thomas Lowe Whistler, Jr (fl. 1840-1868), surgeon [more]. JW made contact with him and Thomas Whistler replied, describing his family background and connections (see T. L. Whistler to JW, #06975).

7.  [p. 2]
Page 2 has a thin mourning border.

8.  properties
According to C. K. Irwin, Randolphus Whistler (see note below) was the 'original Tenant of 13,000 Irish acres of land in Ulster under the Salters Co. of London the lands remaining in the hands of the Whistler Family for 132 years then passing to Sir Thos. Bateson, afterwards to the Marquis of Londonderry, & finally reverting to the Salter's Co.: A. D. 1853.' See C. K. Irwin to G. Wm Whistler, #02372.

9.  Randolphus Whistler
Ralph (Randolphus or H. S. E. Radulphus?) Whistler (d. 1656 or 1657) [more].