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Record number: WCP393

Sent by:
Herbert Edward ("Edward") Wallace
Sent to:
Frances ("Fanny") Sims (née Wallace)
September [1849]

Sent by Herbert Edward ("Edward") Wallace, Santarém, Pará, Brazil to Frances ("Fanny") Sims (née Wallace) [none given] on September [1849].

Record created:
01 June 2002 by Lucas, Paula J.
Verified by:
22/05/2012 - Catchpole, Caroline (All except summary checked);


Re. plans to travel down the Amazon to Montalogre; description of the town; sighting of a blue pig.

Record contains:

  • letter (1)

View item:

LETTER (WCP393.393)

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

Held by:
Natural History Museum
Finding number:
NHM WP1/3/76
Copyright owner:
©Wallace Family
Record scrutiny:
22/05/2012 - Catchpole, Caroline;

Item notes

Physical description

Transcription information






Dear Fanny3

As Alfred has written to my Mother I thought I would address my letter to you, you will perceive by this, we have left Pará4, and are now stopping at Santarein a city about a fortnights journey from Para situated at the mouth of the river Trombitus Tapocintoz[?]5a tributary stream to the mighty Amazon The waters of this River are beautifully clear and contain and immense variety of fish among which is the Peucon[?], the largest and most useful fish in this country forming the staple food of the inhabitants.6 [[2]] The city of Santarein is not quite a Modern Babalon[sic] as to size and appearance, it being about the size of Neath, although the grass growing in the streets might remind you of some deserted city of the ancients; most of the houses are of one story, the only remarkable building is the church with two square towers. We are nor preparing to leave Santarein, for Montalagre7 a small village situated about two days journey down the river Amazon -- I will now make a few suppositions [[3]] about English affairs; I suppose by this time you have got lots of music and drawing pupils and that "Ollendorfs8 system of French Tuition" is the rage in Weston Super Mare, I also suppose Thommas[sic] has "put a good face upon the matter" or rather good faces, and that he comes out quite strong as well as the pictures he produces, you can tell him that when the sun is vertical here, by walking without a cap for a short time, we can get our heads done with a stroke of the Sun, the Activice[?] Power being very strong here.

[[4]] Since I have been at Santarein, I have made a discovery a Zoological discovery -- you remember the "Blue Pig" at Neath if you dont Thommas does, it has always been considered a fabulous animal, an eccentric whim of the sign painter -- it is no longer a fable -- the sign painter may refute the charge of eccentricity -- Let the people of Neath know I have seen in Brazil, a living breathing, live Blue Pig. -- Give my love to Mother, and Thommas[sic] and accept the same from your

Affectionate Brother | Edward Wallace9 [signature]


1. "[WP1/3/76]" in pencil in an unknown hand in the top right corner of the page.

2. Santarém is a city in the state of Pará in Brazil.

3. ARWs sister, Frances Wallace Sims (1812-1893).

4. Pará, a state in northern Brazil.

5. This is probably the stream now known as the Tapajós.

6. "[OLD REF WP2/1/2]" in pencil in an unknown hand in the bottom left corner of the page.

7. This village is now known as Monte Alegre.

8. Heinrich Gottfried Ollendorff (1803-1865) was a German grammarian and language educator.

9. Herbert Edward Wallace (1829-1851), ARWs younger brother.

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