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Record number: WCP4802

Sent by:
Alfred Russel Wallace
Sent to:
9 January 1898

Sent by Alfred Russel Wallace, Corfe View, Parkstone, Dorset to Wilson [none given] on 9 January 1898.

Record created:
24 October 2012 by Catchpole, Caroline


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Record contains:

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LETTER (WCP4802.5194)

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

Held by:
John Greenell Wilson
Copyright owner:
ŠA. R. Wallace Literary Estate

Physical description

Transcription information




Parkstone, Dorset.

January 9th. 1898

My dear Mrs. Wilson

The receipt of a newspaper with the news of the marriage of you[r] daughter reminds me that you wro[te]1 to me one or two years ago, and tha[t] I have not replied -- for which I apologise. I have now been living here about 8 years, and we like it fairly well, although it is not so mild a climate as we hoped to have. I am glad to say that I have very fair health, and occupy myself with writing a little, reading, and gardening. I am now the last of my family. My brother John died at Stockton California in 1895, and my sister Fanny had died in London [[2]] two years before -- strange to say both of them of cancer. My sister was 81 and my brother 77, and both had such good general health that they might have lived many years longer but for this terrible disease which was not known in the family before.

I & my wife now live here alone, out daughter, Violet, having the Kindergarten department in a large school in Liverpool, and likes her employment very much. She only spends her holidays with us. Our son, Will, who is an Electrical Engineer went to America last March with a friend in the same trade to earn their living, gain experience, & see the country. They remained some months in Boston working in a cycle factory & on an Electric Railway. They then cycled across America to Denver [[3]] close to the Rocky Mountains, staying a few days in the Adirondack M[oun]t[ai]ns. at Niagara, and at Chicago. They are now working at telegraph lines on a railroad about 100 miles east of Denver, and hope to work their way on to California, where Will can make the acquaintance of his cousins my brother John's children. When Will last wrote he was working in a temperature below zero, but was in excellent health.

I have been lately writing a book to be called "The Wonderful Century", which I hope to get published in March. I write chiefly in the winter as during the summer I find so much to do in my garden, and attending to my orchids, of which [[4]] I now have a house full, and always have some in flower.

Violet went back to Liverpool yesterday, & the day before was so mild and bright that we went for a little excursion & picnick2 [sic] hoping to find a few primrose buds, but were not so fortunate though there are some in our garden.

With best wishes to yourself and family, and for your daughters [sic] happiness.

Believe me | Yours very sincerely | Alfred R. Wallace [signature]


1. The right hand page margin has been cut off and the final letters of the word are missing.

2. The word was originally written 'picnik' but ARW has written a 'ck' over the 'k' to make 'picnick'.

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