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Record number: WCP4733

Sent by:
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent to:
Matthew B. Slater
22 February 1907

Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Old Orchard, Broadstone, Wimborne, Dorset to Matthew B. Slater [none given] on 22 February 1907.

Record created:
24 September 2012 by Catchpole, Caroline


No summary available at this time.

Record contains:

  • letter (2)

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LETTER (WCP4733.5089)

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

Held by:
Greater Manchester County Record Office (with Manchester Archives)
Finding number:
Wallace-Slater Correspondence no. 33
Copyright owner:
ŠA. R. Wallace Literary Estate
Record scrutiny:
26/06/2014 - Benny, Ruth;

Physical description

Transcription information




Broadstone, Wimborne

Feb[ruar]y 20th. 1906

Dear Mr Slater2

I thought Mr Teasdale would tell you about the "pictures". The lot were sent to Macmillan with lists of eight, sixteen, & twenty four - we thought the last, to have reproduced. They said to have eight only would cost £40! & they thought "the book would not hear it", as they did not expect a large sale. The pictures are rather crude, but some are very well drawn & quite life-like, though not artistic. The colours too are good; and, as being done by a native Indian artist, are certainly very interesting. The drawback is that they all refer [[2]] to one city, about which there does not seem to be much in Spruce's3 letters. Still, I think if 24 of the best were given in the book it would be a great addition, besides making known these curious drawings which may not be even in any English Collection. I have suggested to Mr. Teasdale that perhaps some of the "Castle Howard" family, who knew Spruce, would if asked, contribute the amount necessary to produce half of them - about £120 - as a memento of their friendship with him. Is he (Mr. T.) friendly with any of the present family? I see, by letters, that his father made a "Catalogue" [[3]] of the Castle Howard library - I presume not for payment. I have not heard from Mr. Teasdale since, so perhaps he is taking this into consideration. Do you know if any family are rich?

I have now got the copies of all the Kew letters which are very interesting, and about half of them - or rather if the contents of them - are suitable for the book. In fact, with Mr Teasdale's, they will form the main part of the Andes explorations. The difficulty is in piecing them together, as often the same thing is told 3 times over to Bentham - Hooker - & Teasdale - and then again the "Journal"! but mixed up with other matter peculiar to each, so that it requires [[4]] much trouble and repeated reading and .... not to prevent repetition. I also have to fill in gaps and give some explanations which require much consideration; but now I am really at work at it I find it interesting, & hope to [illegible crossed out word] get a fairly good result out of it all.

I have a bound vol[ume]lettered on back "Mss. Vol[ume]. I" consisting of a lot of notes of various kinds. It refers to Vol[ume]. II, which I have not got, & which I want to refer for names of plants used by the natives. If you can find it please send it to me.

4 The photo negative will do admirably frontispiece.

It has just occurred to me that if the C. Howard family will contribute handsomely for the "pictures", perhaps some other friends would also do so. I know of one who would, Sir T. Hanbury5 whose brother Daniel6 was a great friend though Sir T. did not know him.

Yours very truly | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]


1. '33 (see copy at 34)' has been written on the top left of the letter, it may not have been written by the author.

2. Slater, Matthew B. (1830-1914). Botanist.

3. Spruce, Richard (1817-1893). English botanist.

4. This sentence has been written vertically in the left margin of the fourth page. A mark has been put which suggests it was meant to be inserted between the two paragraphs.

5. Hanbury, Sir Thomas (1832-1907). British businessman, gardener and philanthropist

6. Hanbury, Daniel (1825-1875). British botanist and pharmacologist.

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