A typical letter handwritten by author in English and signed by author.
An original MS
Pages with text: 4
Transcriber: Clerx, William
Transcription date: August 16, 2012
Scrutiny: 15/01/2013 - Catchpole, Caroline;
Signed off: no
Waldron Edge, Duppas Hill, Croydon.
Monday [October 1878]1
Many thanks for your kind offer of assistance. I have not yet asked Sir R. Alcock,3 and as he is the only President of a Scientific Society writing[?] to my signatures perhaps you will be so kind as to lay the enclosed memorial before him and ask him if he has any objection to favour me with his signature. Afterwards [] if you have the opportunity within a week to obtain the signature of any person of importance, such as Lord Houghton4 or Major Gen. Rawlinson,5 I should be glad, but I do not care about men of less weight.
Believe me | Yours very faithfully | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]
[] P.S.6 I met D’Allentis7 by appointment in London & had a long talk about his book. He promised to go to the publisher with the MSS. & to say I was ready to undertake the Editorship. But he had some preliminary chapters to write & revision to do, which is no doubt now occupying him.
A. R. W [signature]
[] WALLACE, Alfred Russel8
A. R. Wallace
1. Please see page 4 for this embellishment of the date listed on page 1.
2. English naturalist and explorer Henry Walter Bates, FRS, FLS, FGS (1825 - 1892). Bates is gave the first scientific account of animal mimicry, and "Batesian mimicry" still bears his name today. Bates was also a friend and expedition companion of Wallace, one of the first supporters of the Darwin/Wallace theory of evolution by natural selection.
3. President of the Royal Geographical Society and former British diplomat to Japan, Sir Rutherford Alcock, KCB (1809 - 1897).
4. English poet, literary patron, and politician Richard Monckton Milnes, 1st Baron Houghton, FRS (1809 - 1885).
5. British East India Company army officer, politician, and "Orientalist" Major General Sir Henry Creswicke Rawlinson, 1st Baronet, GCB (1810 - 1895). A scholar of the Near and Far East, Rawlinson has been called the Father of Assyriology, or the study of ancient Mesopotamia and related cultures that utilized cuneiform writing.
6. This is written on an otherwise empty but horizontally-turned page.
7. Luigi Maria D’Albertis (1841 - 1901) was an Italian naturalist and explorer, and the first person to chart the Fly River of Papua New Guinea in 1876.
8. Found on the upper right hand corner of a page which is otherwise empty but which appears to have writing on the back. This text is printed, in pencil.
9. Found on the upper right hand corner of a page which is otherwise empty but which appears to have writing on the back. This and the subsequent (final) line of text are written in cursive script and ink, but do not appear to be in the hand of ARW.
Please note that work on this transcript is not yet complete. Users are advised to study electronic image(s) of this document, if available.