The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: sales (JW's work)
Record 5 of 23

System Number: 06540
Date: 22 November [1868[1]]
Author: Anna Matilda Whistler[2]
Place: London
Recipient: James H. Gamble[3]
Recipient: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: Whistler W534
Document Type: ALS

[embossed monogram:] AMW

My ever dear friend

Just a line ere I & Jamie[4] bid good night to each other for I shall sleep better for relieving my mind of the haunting fear which suddenly came to cause me self reproach. You & I know each other so thoroughly I need not be restrained lest frankness should cause offence. Upon reflection it seems to me that you perhaps might not have indulged in so expensive a set of Etchings[5] had you known of their rise in price since the French[6] [p. 2] set were offered our friends at two guineas! for tho our Artist has no value for his juvenile productions, they may be as pleasing generally as his Thames Etchings & you who go about doing good ought not to feel obliged to give the difference in price - without your having been made aware of it. you doubtless have so many worthy & interesting objects for your liberal desire to help others. So I propose "splitting the difference" & that you receive again the cheque & reduce it to half.

The Pictures were delivered here yesterday safely & put directly in the back Studio. they are most valuable as proofs that you thought of Jamie [p. 3] who now bids me thank you for your kindness. I hope the storm which we feel roughly on the river here - may clear away in a day or two that you may bring your dear Harriet[7] again to see me in an afternoon. I shall be rather awkwardly situated when my nice servant Mary[8] takes her leave of our service on Wednesday next, but you are not ceremonious, & we must imagine ourselves at Scarsdale Cottage[9] again & only a Topsey[10] to wait upon my friends. In haste as ever

Your old friend

A M Whistler

This is entre-nous[11]!

2 Lindsey Row Chelsea

Sunday night 22nd Novr

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  1868
Dated with reference to the Perpetual Calendar Whitaker's Almanac, and the marriage of James H. Gamble which took place probably on 4 October 1868; see AMW to James H. Gamble, #06537.

2.  Anna Matilda Whistler
Anna Matilda Whistler (1804-1881), née McNeill, JW's mother [more].

3.  James H. Gamble
James H. Gamble (b. 1820), clerk [more].

4.  Jamie
James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903), artist [more].

5.  set of Etchings
Probably etchings which were later published as A Series of Sixteen Etchings of Scenes on the Thames, 1871 (the 'Thames Set') (K.38-44, 46, 52, 66, 68, 71, 74-76, 95).

6.  French
Twelve Etchings from Nature, 1858 (the 'French Set', K.9-11, 13-17, 19, 21, 22, 24).

7.  Harriet
Harriet Gamble, née Wheaton, wife of J. H. Gamble.

8.  Mary
Mary, a servant of AMW.

9.  Scarsdale Cottage
AMW lived intermittently at Scarsdale, NY between c. September 1851 and November 1857 in a cottage owned by her friend Margaret Getfield Hill.

10.  Topsey
'Topsy' was an orphan slave girl in Harriet E. Beecher Stowe's famous anti-slavery novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin, published in the National Era in 1851-52 and in book form in 1852. However AMW refers here to Eliza (d. 1856), a servant of Kate Livermore [more]; see AMW to JW 27 August 1851, #06399, and AMW to JW, 16 September 1851, #06400.

11.  entre-nous
Fr., between ourselves.