Wallace Letters Online

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Record number: WCP3561

Sent by:
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent to:
Henry Norton Shaw
August 1857

Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Macassar [Makassar], Celebes [Sulawesi] Island, [Indonesia] to Henry Norton Shaw, [Royal Geographical Society, 15 Whitehall Place, London] on August 1857.

Record created:
12 December 2011 by Catchpole, Caroline
Verified by:
22/08/2012 - Catchpole, Caroline (All except summary checked);


No summary available at this time.

Record contains:

  • letter (1)

View item:

LETTER (WCP3561.3460)

A typical letter handwritten by author in English and signed by author.

Held by:
Royal Geographical Society
Finding number:
Copyright owner:
ŠA. R. Wallace Literary Estate
Record scrutiny:
22/08/2012 - Catchpole, Caroline;

Physical description

Transcription information





August 1857.1

My dear D[octo]r Shaw2

You will receive from Mr. Stevens a paper of mine containing some account of the "Arru Islands", where I have spent six months, going & returning in a native trading prow. I went principally to shoot Birds of Paradise, & had capital sport. Of them I have sent an account to the "Annals of Nat[ural]. History". If you are too full to read my paper perhaps Sir R. Murchison3 would like it for the "Geological" as it contains an account of some very curious & I think 4 [[2]] quite unique phenomena of Physical Geography.

This is a horrid country, very bare & most difficult to get about, I leave as soon as I can "en route" for N[ew] Guinea, about which I got much information at Arru. Having just got seven months letters & news I have plenty to do, besides extensive collections of birds & insects to sort & pack. Trusting you are quite well.

I remain | My dear D[octo]r. Shaw | Yours sincerely | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]



A R Wallace

Rec[eived]: Nov[ember] 5


1. The number "9" is written in pencil and circled at the top right of page 1.

2. Henry Norton Shaw (?-1868), diplomat & secretary of the Royal Geographical Society.

3. Sir Roderick Murchison (1792-1871), geologist.

4. Text in ARWs hand reads "Dr. Norton Shaw" at the bottom of page 1.

5. This is actually the verso of the second page of the letter.

Please note that work on this transcript is not yet complete. Users are advised to study electronic image(s) of this document, if available.