[ J.L. Hammond; social history] Autograph Letter Signed J L Hammond to Harold [Docketed H.J. Massingham], concerning the Plumage Bill.

J.L. Hammond [John Lawrence Le Breton Hammond (1872 – 1949), journalist and writer on social history and politics]
Publication details: 
at Ben Vista, Gorran Haven, Gorran, Cornwall, 4 May 1920.
SKU: 23369

One page, 4t, lined paper, fold marks, small closed tear, good condition. difficult hand in parts. I must send you a line to say how bitterly disappointed I am that all your magnificent work on the Plumage Bill - for which my wife & I have unbounded admiration - has ended in this [??]. It is heart breaking. This [?] generation of profiteers will destroy all the beauty left in the world. We only found out late last night what had happened & I dreamt about it all night. I don't know when I have felt more hopeless for I thought that in the general wickedness of the world we were [going?] to rescue this one [cause?]. You have done nobly. Nobody could have put the case better or more persuasively. Is it possible I wonder that Montagu might still get a [Govt?] Bill? I don't suppose {??] this unspeakable Govt would [do anything unless it?] was business. Don't answer this for I know how busy you are but I wanted you to know how deeply we feel for you & share your distress. Virginia Woolf took a view on the Plumage trade/bill: Virginia Woolf in her reply essay ‘The Plumage Bill’ responds to Massingham’s charge with the creation of the character ‘Lady So-and-So’. Woolf proceeds to paint a harsh portrait of the unthinking, selfindulgent woman of fashion – the buyer of the feather – presenting her in away that seems astonishingly to corroborate Massingham’s view. But inanother twist, she renders a far more devastating portrait of men – thehunters and merchants that turn killing into a commodity, and the maleparliament that fails to pass the plumage Bill prohibiting the trade. Woolfprompts her audience to question the social code that unconsciouslycondemns women’s pleasures – the love of beauty and fashion – as sinwhereas men’s pleasures – their lusts for hunting, women, money – areaccepted even valorised:'Can it be that it is a graver sin to be unjust to women than to torture birds?'