Air Commodore Dame Felicity Hill [Felicity Barbara Hill] (1915-?), Director, Women's Royal Air Force, 1966-1969
Undated; from Worcester Cottage, Mews Lane, Winchester, Hants.
The six-line letter, which is laid down on a slightly larger piece of lilac paper, was originally on one side of an octavo leaf, but it has had a strip (presumably carrying the name and address of the recipient) beneath the address cut away. It is now in two pieces: 5 x 15.5 and 12 x 15.5 cm. Otherwise very good. Laid down on the top piece is a slip of paper in Hill's hand, reading 'From: Air Commodore Dame Felicity Hill D.B.E. WRAF (retd)'. In the bottom right-hand corner of the second piece of paper is a strip carrying Hill's autograph.
Sir William James Lloyd Wharton (1843-1905), hydrographer [Naval Review by King Edward VII at Spithead, 28 June 1902; Royal Navy; Fleet Review]
London. Published at the Admiralty, 13th. June 1902, under the Superintendence of Rear Admiral Sir W. J. L. Wharton, K.C.B.: F.R.S.: Hydrographer. Sold by J.D. Potter. Agent for the sale of Admiralty Charts, 145 Minories.
In light blue, light brown and black on one side of a piece of wove paper roughly 38 x 56 cm. Good: lightly creased and with a little wear at foot. Folded three times. 'Corrections 14th. June' in bottom left-hand corner, and 'Malby & Sons, Lith.' in bottom right-hand corner. Faintly stamped on border at foot 'CHARPENTIER | PORTSMOUTH'. COPAC lists one copy (National Library of Scotland).
J. Coupland, Southampton printer [Captain J. H. Knight; steam packet boats; naval and maritime; the Medina; the Earl of Malmesbury]
J. Coupland, Printer, Southampton.
Printed on both sides of a piece of card roughly 11 x 7.5 cm, good, with text and illustration clear and entire, on grubby and lightly stained paper. The same engraving of a steam packet at sea at head of both sides of each card. Attractively printed, and giving times and fares.
Winston Churchill [Winston Spencer Churchill; Surgeon Commander A. C. Paterson, H.M.S. Victory]
Headed '10, DOWNING STREET, | WHITEHALL', and dated in print '4th July, 1940.'
Printed on one side of a piece of unwatermarked cream wove paper. Dimensions roughly 24 x 19 cm. Folded and lightly creased, and with some staining (not affecting the text, which is entirely legible) to left-hand margin and top left-hand corner. 24 lines of text. According to Churchill's memoirs, this 'admonition' was 'circulated throught the inner circles of the governing machine' and then read to the House of Commons the following day.
Admiralty. 20 May 1937. [Printed by 'H & S, Ltd.']
8vo; 33 pp. In original blue printed wraps. On lightly-aged paper, with occasional foxing, in creased wraps. With the stamp of the Royal Portsmouth Corinthian Yacht Club. The entries for the eighteen nations listed on the second page have been ticked off in blue pencil, and the ships of two other nations (Canada and India) added beneath the list in manuscript. Listing the crews of the various ships, with seniority. Represented are both the U.S.S.R., with the 'Marat' ('Flagman 2nd Rank (Rear Admiral) - V. I. Ivanov (Commanding Officer)...
[19 Decr 1827 - date entered in pencil in another hand]
Two pages, 8vo, good condition. She explains why she can't fulfil his wish that she receive his guests but looks forward to a visit to "Craven Street"., only postponed. Hhe has "written to Mr Pickering [publisher?] according to your instructions and shall feel obliged by the exertion of your influence in my behalf with him." She claims to be writing in great haste.
Lady Jane Halliday [née Tollemache] (1750-1802), English society beauty painted by Sir Joshua Reynolds [Lord Hugh Seymour; the Royal Navy]
Grove Cottage near Cowes'. Undated, but docketed '22 Sept: 1800'.
4to, 1 p, 12 lines. Very good, on aged paper. Asking the recipient 'through this medium to recommend my son Lieut Halliday [Francis Halliday, born around 1776; fl. 1820] of the Thunderer, now at Jamaica, to the notice of Lord Hugh Seymour; Sir Hyde Parker has sent me an account of him, but to my great disappointment has not brought him Home - - - - - Francis has been six years in the East & West Indies & very attentive to his profession'. She feels sure that 'a line from yr. Lordship to Lord Hugh could not fail of being of great use to him'. Docketed on reverse 'Mem: Enquire abt.
Florrie Cockle and Albert ('Birt') Cockle [Willie Iggulden; Boer War; South Africa]
East London, South Africa; 1898 and 1899.
Very good, on aged and lightly creased paper. Six long letters to family in England written during a turbulent period in South African history. Affectionate, chatty, and written from a lower-middle-class point of view (Florrie: 'we always have an h[ou]r., when I change my dress for the afternoon after dinner'). Mostly dealing with family matters. Letter One (from 'Florrie', 4 September 1898, 'P.O. East London, South Africa', 4to: 4 pp): tells an amusing story about Birt, a cart and a goat. Letter Two (from 'Florrie', 11 September 1898, address as Letter One, 4to: 2 pp).
Captain Robert Hall (1817-1882), The Secretary of the Admiralty, Whitehall, London [Commander Paterson, RN; Victorian inventions]
2 March 1876; Admiralty [London].
Foolscap bifolium (leaf dimensions 33 x 20.5 cm). Good, on aged and lightly creased paper. The letter, the printed text of which invites the recipient to 'forward to this Office a clear description' of his invention, is on the recto of the first leaf. Particularising details and signature by Hall, who has addressed it to 'Commander Paterson R.N. | Brockhurst House | Brockhurst | Gosport | Hants'. Docketed and initialed by Paterson at head. The recto of the second leaf contains a printed 'Memorandum' by W. G.
Sir James Knowles [Sir James Thomas Knowles] (1831-1908), architect and editor of 'The Nineteenth Century' [Sir Archibald Hurd (1869-1959), writer on naval matters]
Between 1898 and 1901; on letterhead of 'The Nineteenth Century'.
All five items are 12mo, 1 p, and in good condition, with the text entirely legible, but with slight discoloration to the extremities and to the blank second leaves of four of the letters. Letter One (17 May 1898): Concerns a letter by Sir William White, regarding which Knowles has not written as 'it seemed to me there was nothing to write about - & I am compelled to write so many letters!' Knowles 'did not at all think that Sir W. White intended any disparaging reflection in your competence by saying that you were <?> not a man "technically trained in naval architecture" '.
Sir Edward Knatchbull (1781-1849) of Mersham Hatch, Kent, 9th Baronet, English ultra-Tory politician [the Mayor of Canterbury]
17 September 1841; Mersham Hatch.
4to, 3 pp. Very good, on aged paper. Small punch hole through top left-hand corner of both leaves of the bifolium (not affecting text, which is clear and entire). Knatchbull claims that it has been 'intimated' to him 'that the Removal of the Troops from Canterbury in consequence of the Election for the County, which is to take place on Monday next, will cause much Inconvenience, especially to the Trade of the City'. He does not think that the Secretary of State 'would like to interfere, unless in Concurrence with the desire & opinion of the Authorities of the City of Canterbury'.
Sir Francis Beaufort (1774-1857), naval officer and hydrographer [Francis Lestock Beaufort (1815-1879)]
Date and place not stated.
Strip of paper, 3 x 10.5 cm, removed from letter for inclusion in an autograph collection. Good, on lightly-aged light-blue paper. Laid down on strip of cream paper. Reads '<...> believe me dear Lestock | as ever, Yours faithfully | F Beaufort'. Neatly docketed in a contemporary hand in the bottom left-hand corner 'Sir F. Beaufort'. Text on reverse reads '<...> to poor Sneyd I can <...> advice to him, short of <...> filling the plan he had <...> and getting him (at <...>'.
Baron Hendrik Fagel [Henry Fagel] (1765-1838), Dutch Ambassador to London [Holland; the Netherlands]
Whitehallplace Febry. 16th. 1824'.
4to, 2 pp. Text clear and entire. On aged paper with a few closed tears to extremities and a thin strip of discoloration along one margin on reverse. 'The Royal Netherland Navy have made use of Coaltar for preserving certain parts of vessels of war from decay', but 'the Medical Department in the Netherlands' have confirmed that the use of Coaltar for that purpose has a prejudicial effect on the health of the Ships crews'. Asks to be informed 'of the results of any enquiries instituted on this Subject by order of the British Admiralty'. Docketed 'Netherland's under Secretary'.
Prince Herbert von Bismarck [Nicolaus Heinrich Ferdinand Herbert von Bismarck] (1849-1904), Prussian diplomat and soldier, son of Otto von Bismark
Date and place not stated.
On piece of paper roughly 6.5 x 13 cm. Good, on creased and lightly aged paper. Reads '<...> | yours very sincerely | H. Bismark'. On reverse '<...> looking forward immensely to my visit to you. I have just been asked to lunch with a very old lady <...>'.
Frederick Sleigh Roberts, 1st Earl Roberts [Lord Roberts of Kandahar] (1832-1914), English soldier
22 October 1909; on letterhead of Englemere, Ascot, Berkshire.
12mo, 2 pp. Good, with minor staining and head, and traces of previous mount to blank second leaf of bifolium. He is sorry to learn that the 'Private Secretary, Mr. Harold Roberts' has rheumatic fever, 'a most painful disease' which 'usually lasts some time'. 'The poor lad will get over it, and ere long be quite himself again'. Lady Roberts is sending the boy 'some flowers'. When he is 'stronger, and would care to read', Roberts will send him 'a copy of my "Forty-one years in India".'
Robert Constable; William Rylands; Joseph Matthews; John Wyatt; the galley 'Neptune' [naval and maritime; stuart; sixteenth and seventeenth century; the Inns of Court]
taken on Oath before me this 17th day of October Anno. Dom 1706.'
On one side of a piece of watermarked laid paper roughly 31 x 19 cm. Docketed on reverse. Good, on lightly aged paper, with slight chipping to right-hand edge and short closed tear neatly repaired on reverse with archival tape. The words 'Middle in top left-hand cornerr. Rylands says that the Neptune was 'lying in the Downes' three weeks before, when Matthews and Wyatt, 'being marriners on board', did 'with five other person's Run away with the long boat or yaul belonging to the Said gally'.
4 July 1845; 3 Upper Eccleston Street, Belgrave Square, London.
12mo, 4 pp, 40 lines. On slightly grubby and creased paper, with a couple of tiny closed tears. Paulet writes that he has been 'saying much in [Smith's] favor' to 'Sir W. Gage' [Admiral Sir William Hall Gage (1777-1864), a member of the Board of Admiralty]. Gage considers the certificate Paulet has given Smith 'of no use to you without your received from the Adm[ira]l. the appointment of Gunnery Officer and that you had better lose no time in applying to me for a certificate for the time that you were actually doing the duty of gunnery officer'. Paulet reckons this 'from the time of Mr.
Robert Washington Dana (1868-1956), British naval architect, assistant to Barry on the construction of Tower Bridge, London, and 'Resident Engineer for reconstruction of Kew Bridge'
1911 (3 letters) and 1913 (4 letters); all on letterhead of the Institution of Naval Architects (of which Dana was the Secretary).
Six of the letters are 4to, 1 p; the other is 12mo, 1 p. All good, on lightly aged paper. All bearing the Society's stamp and most docketed. On a variety of subjects: a proposed paper by 'Herr Frahm', the use by the Institution of the Royal Society's library for a council meeting, the delivery to the Society of a 'model tank that is coming from Germany' ('the reader of the paper is sending his representative over from Germany to superintend matters'), and a 'Proposed Memorial to the late Sir William White' ('with reference to Mr. Bailey Saunders and Mr. C. R. Graves.
Vice Admiral the Hon. James Robert Drummond (1812-1895), Royal Navy, Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean [Victorian; naval and maritime]
H M S Lord Warden Malta | Feb 23rd. 1874'.
12mo, 2 pp. On Drummond's embossed crested letterhead. Good: on lightly aged paper with corners a little dogeared and slight discoloration along one margin. Small glue stain from previous mounting at foot of reverse (not affecting text). Headed 'General Memo -'. Instructing Randolph 'to conduct all necessary evolutions relative to the exercise of guns, Sails, Boats - small arm | men landing, & Marines - on acting permission for the same from my Flag as he may find conducive to the instruction of the Ships of the Ships herein named of the squadron [five ships named at end of letter]'.
Robert Wynn, captain of Their Majesties' Ship Pembroke [Naval and Maritime; Stuart Navy; 1694; William and Mary]
From on board of their Majies: Ship Pembroke | 9ber: ye 27th. 94' [27 September 1694].
Foolscap bifolium (leaf dimensions 30.5 x 19), 1 p. On aged and slightly damp-stained paper, with slight wear to extremities. Text clear and entire. The body of the letter (4 lines) reads: 'Honoble: Prs | This is to humbly to [sic] request of you yt ye Master of ye his name is Charles may be removed to be my Master.' Adressed on reverse of second leaf. The Pembroke (the third ship in the Royal Navy to bear the name) was a fourth rate of 60 guns built in 1694. She was captured by the French in 1709, was recaptured, and foundered in 1711.
Colonel James Francis Erskine, of the Regiment of Swiss Chasseurs
7 March 1783; 'Kensington gravell Pitts'.
Erskine, who died in 1806, was the grandson of the 27th Earl of Mar. 3 pages, 8vo. In very good condition. The letter, addressed to 'your Excellency', concerns 'The Honble. Captain Cunningham who had resigned a Troop of Dragoons on the Irish Establishment to go upon Service with the same rank in my unfortunate Regiment of Swiss Chasseurs'.
Commander Oliver Locker-Lampson (1880-1954), Conservative MP for North Huntingdonshire (1910-22) and Handsworth (1922-45) [Hands Off Britain "Clear out the Reds" Campaign; communism; anti-communist]
Undated; on letterhead of the 'Hands Off Britain "Clear out the Reds" Campaign', St. Stephen's House, Westminster.
4to, 1 p, 9 lines. On behalf of his 'Committee' acknowledging his correspondent's 'kind letter with its generous contribution to the funds of our Campaign', adding 'a message of individual thanks from myself to you for your mostt encouraging support'. 'Our Campaign is prospering, and we hope soon to complete our success by the early expulsion of the Reds.' His correspondent's 'welcome help' is of 'great value'.
Sir Philip Watts (1846-1926), English naval architect [Sir Archibald Hurd (1869-1959); Elswick Shipyard, Newcastle upon Tyne; Victorian shipbuilding; maritime]
16 July 1898; on Elswick Shipyard letterhead.
4to, 2 pp, 18 lines. Text clear and entire on aged, creased paper, with pin holes and indentations and slight smoke-staining in right-hand margin of first leaf (not affecting text) and on the blank reverse of the second leaf. The late response to Hurd's letter of 13 March is due to 'a clerical oversight and the illness and absence of the writer'. Gives details of the amount of coal carried by the 'Blanco Encalada', 'Hai Chi' and 'Buenos Aires', as well as their bunker capacity and normal supplies. He also refers to the 'Astraea' and the 'Japanese Battleship "Yahsima"'.
Ernest de Jonquières (1820-1901), French naval officer and mathematician [Léon Lalanne [Léon Louis Chrétien Lalanne] (1811-1892), French engineer and mathematician]
9 July 1886; Paris.
Written on both sides of the card, dimensions 5.5 x 9 cm. Good, with a little light scuffing on the front. Communication between two leading lights of French nineteenth-century mathematics. Printed text reads 'VICE-AMIRAL DE JONQUIERES | MEMBRE DE L'INSTITUT | AVENUE BUGEAUD, 2'. Asks Lalanne to 'inscrire Monsieur Bonnaffé, lauréat de l'Institut, parmi les lecteurs'.
Sir Philip Watts (1846-1926), English naval architect [Sir Archibald Hurd (1869-1959)]
20 [corrected from 18] October 1909; on embossed Admiralty letterhead.
4to, 2 pp, 25 lines. Good, on slightly discoloured and grubby paper. Watts takes issue with 'The statement of British Shipbuilding Programmes since 1889' which Hurd has forwarded. 'It was found more convenient to draw up the table again', and Watts is sending 'the result of the investigations which have been made' (table not present). He is in 'complete agreement' with the 'statements under the headings of Battleships, Armoured Cruisers and 1st. class Cruisers', but 'Under the headings of 2nd. and 3rd.
James Hammond of the Ordnance Office, Jersey [Revolutions of 1848; French Royal Family; Louis XVIII; Board of Ordnance; Ordnance Office, Pall Mall]
2 March 1848; Jersey.
12mo, 3 pp. Ruckled and stained, with the verso of the second leaf of the bifolium (carrying the address) laid down on a leaf detached from an autograph album. The 'Royal Family of France' are causing 'a very deep interest' and 'a portion of them have found their way to this Island'. He reports that the 'Duchesse d'Orleans and her two Sons, and the Duc de Montpensier have arrived here from Granville - they were brought over by a Jersey Boat the Master of which has been most liberally rewarded'.
Leslie Rundle [Sir Henry Macleod Leslie Rundle] (1856-1934), British army officer
31 July 1904; on letterhead of Government House, York.
12mo, 3 pp. Good on lightly-aged paper. He has 'written to the necessary authorities' about his correspondent's son. 'Of course it will largely depend on which Slade [Lt-Gen. Frederick George Slade (b.1851), C.B.] says about him, as I do not know your son personally - though his record reads an exceptionally good one.' He is sorry to hear about his correspondent's brother's death: 'he was always very kind' to Rundle.
Printed handbill, 2pp., 8vo, edge attached to card, bottom edge curled but text complete. At the top the words "N.B. This narrative of events is not to be taken into the trenches". Obviously an account of a German atttack dealt with and returned by Indian regiments, issued in this form for morale-boosting. Laid down on reverse printed Christmas greetings from Sir John French, Xmas Day, 1914 (a "Special Order of the Day"). Two items,
Sir Charles Close [Sir Charles Frederick Arden-Close] (1865-1952), surveyor and geographer; Vice-Admiral Sir Henry Percy Douglas (1876-1939) [Sir Wiliam Boyd Dawkins (1837-1929), geologist]
Close's letters: 17 and 24 April 1926, both on letterhead of Coytbury, St. Giles's Hill, Winchester; Douglas's letter: 23 April 1926, on letterhead of the Hydrographic Department, Admiralty, Whitehall, London, S.W.1.
All three letters good, on lightly aged paper. Close's first letter (12mo, 2 pp): He is pleased to hear 'that Professor O. T. Jones is convalescent and back at work'. Close will write to him to ask if he will take part in the 'Commission' on the 'Terrasses littorales'. Having none 'handy', he is writing to the Admiralty Hydrographer for a 'list of Admiralty Charts'. The Closes have 'settled to take a house in Jersey for the children's holidays', so there is 'little chance of our being at Oxford for the British Association meeting'.
Alan Gardner, 1st Baron Gardner of Uttoxeter (1742-1808), English admiral and Member of Parliament for Plymouth [William Waldegrave (1753-1825), 1st Baron Radstock]
19 April 1808; Lupton House.
8vo (23.5 x 18.5), 2 pp. Signature cut away, resulting in loss of 3.5 x 10 cm rectangle from corner at bottom and affecting four lines of text on recto. Otherwise good, on lightly aged paper with thin strip from brown paper mount adhering to inner margin on reverse. 37 lines of text (four with loss). An interesting letter written during his final illness. He begins by confirming the report which has reached the recipient of Gardner's 'having been very seriously indisposed'.