[ James Dredge Jr, civil engineer and co-editor of 'Engineering'. ] Autograph Letter Signed ('James Dredge') to 'Willy' [ presumably Stanhope Forbes of Newlyn's brother -see note below], condolences on death of his father, ruminating on mortality.

James Dredge Jr (1840-1906), English civil engineer and co-editor with William H. Maw of the periodical 'Engineering'
Publication details: 
On letterhead of 'Engineering: An Illustrated Weekly Journal, Edited by William H. Maw and James Dredge', 35 & 36 Bedford Street, Strand, London, W.C. 8 December 1888.
SKU: 20515

2pp., 12mo. Bifolium. Letterhead in black and red ink. In fair condition, aged and worn, with creasing at head. A sensitive letter of condolence, beginning: 'Dear Willy | I was so shocked to hear on Thursday of the great loss you have sustained, and I hesitated to write to you, for letters of condolence are such empty useless things. But on the other hand I dont want you to suppose that I feel indifferent to anything that touches you so closely & deeply. We have been such sympathetic friends for so long, that tho I did not know your father, he too seemed almost like an old friend.' The letter concludes with a rumination on mortality, Dredge finding sympathy 'not wholly useless but […] a poor thing in the presence of death'. Note: This letter derives from a collection of letters of condolence to the Forbes family on the death of William Forbes, father of Stanhope Forbes, founder of the Newlyn School of Art whose brother was "William".