Wallace Letters Online

Share this:

Record number: WCP368

Sent by:
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent to:
Fanny & Thomas Sims
6 September 1858

Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Ternate Island, Moluccas, [Indonesia] to Fanny & Thomas Sims, [7 Conduit Street, Regent Street, London] on 6 September 1858.

Record created:
01 June 2002 by Lucas, Paula J.
Verified by:
21/08/2012 - Catchpole, Caroline (All except summary checked);


Re. the Sims's business, George Silk's marriage plans; sending Dumas' "La Reine Margot"; Claudet's stereoscope; photographs by Riglander and Fry; "The Family Herald"; speeches by Spurjeon.

Record contains:

  • letter (1)

View item:

LETTER (WCP368.368)

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

Held by:
Natural History Museum
Finding number:
NHM WP1/3/43
Copyright owner:
ŠA. R. Wallace Literary Estate
Record scrutiny:
21/08/2012 - Catchpole, Caroline;

Item notes

Physical description

Transcription information





Sept[ember] 6th. 1858

My dear Fanny

In the box which will probably reach Mr Stevens two months after this, is one of Dumas best romances "La Reine Margot" wh[ich] was given me by a friend. It is a wonderful story about the massacre of Bartholomew &c. &c. &c. & will help you to pass some long evenings or solitary hours.

I hope you will not think of going back to Conduit St. now you have once left it. Thomas country commission is likely to increase & be more certain & more profitable than the portrait work besides that it is so much less harassing.

I hope G. C. S.1 will get married at last. [[2]] He has written me a lot about the ladies in question. Let me know how the affair goes on when you write.

With best love | I remain | Dear Fanny | Your affectionate Brother | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]

Mr Sims

Dear Thomas

I have just seen in the Athenaeum an account of Claudets great discovery of the Stereomonoscope though I cannot clearly see why it sh[oul]d produce the effects described. Of course you have seen it. Is the effect as good & deceptive as in [[3]] the common Stereoscope -- What a grand thing to throw two magnified pictures on a transparent screen & show views & figures of the size & solidity of life! to a large audience. Can it be done? I sh[oul]d think the spectator must be within a certain limited range both of distance & direction to get the proper effect.

The photographic compositions by Rylander puzzle me. How does he combine his negatives without showing the joints, or are they touched up afterwards to cover them. Again the Photographic engravings[?] are all new to me. Are they really good?

Now I have to recommend you a periodical "The Family Herald" only [[4]] 1d. per week. You probably know it & perhaps as I did at first, despise it. I took however an odd volume to New Guinea with me & of course was obliged to read it[s] every line, -- & what was my astonishment to find in the leading articles a series of essays on the greatest questions of the day which for wit, true philosophy & novelty, are in my opinion unsurpassed in our whole periodical literature.

Besides them is a host of useful matter & lots of amusing & clever tales for odd half hours. Do take it, & when I return I will buy the back volumes wh[ich] are double price, for the sake of the leading articles. Have you been to hear Spurgeon, -- the Athenaeum cut him up as a regular ranter. Is it your friend Mr. Fry who is publishing the Photographs of living celebrities? Cant you get a set to copy?

Yours affectionately | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]

Tho[ma]s Sims Esq[uire]


1. George C. Silk, Wallaces childhood friend

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