Novr. 9th. 1904
I have had by me for 50 years about 200 drawings of fishes which I made on the Rio Negro & its Tributaries, Specimens of all were collected but were lost on the voyage home. The drawings are all made to scale, and are accurate as to fin rays, scaling, dorsal line &c. and I have brief descriptions & notes of locality habits uses &c. of most of them. Would you care to look over them and name such as you know and giving the Genus, or the Family of the rest.
Also I should be glad to know if they are worth making a Catalogue of, if merely to show the possible richness of the fish-fauna of a river in which so many could be found without special collecting & by a non-specialist. They could now be easily reproduced by photography & process-plate, and might perhaps form an interesting little volume.
Do you know any student of fishes to whom they would be useful
for this purpose? they are all in pencil, &were often
done under difficulties in canoes &c. Dr. Gunther looked at
them some 30 years ago and put a few names, but said they were
meaningless without specimens. Still I don't like to throw them
away & should like another opinion.
Yours very truly
[signed] Alfred Russel Wallace
For enquiries about the Wallace Collection please email the library
View high resolution scans and transcripts of Alfred Russel Wallace's correspondence, including all surviving letters between him and Charles Darwin.