The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Documents associated with: Etchings of Venice, The Fine Art Society, London, 1880
Record 10 of 15

System Number: 11498
Date: [1880/1881][1]
Author: JW
Place: [London?]
Recipient: Howard Helmick[2]
Place: [London?]
Repository: Library of Congress
Call Number: Manuscript Division, Pennell-Whistler Collection, PWC 9/652
Document Type: MsLc


How charming my dear Helmick!

I cannot tell you the keen pleasure your most grateful note[4] has given me - Sympathy of the kind is the rarest reward for work - and the power to make one at all believe it merited, a very triumph of delicate praise -

I am as greatly flattered by the one as I am deeply touched by the other -

Always affectionately yours

J. A. McN. Whistler

[butterfly signature]

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [1880/1881]
Dated from signatures and known involvement between JW and Helmick (see below).

2.  Howard Helmick
Howard Helmick (1845-1907), painter and etcher, Professor of History of Art, Georgetown University [more].

3.  Copy
The sheet is a copy made in one hand, but appears to have a note underneath in another hand, which is difficult to read: '[I understand from Mr Graham that this letter is dated "from Princeton" in 188- Could that very well be, think you?]'

4.  note
Not located. It is possible that the subject was works in an exhibition, such as Etchings of Venice, The Fine Art Society, London, 1880, or Venice Pastels, The Fine Art Society, London, 1881. A set of 'Six portraits of T. Carlyle', etched in a rather naive style by Helmick, was published by the Etcher's Society in Arundell Street, Haymarket, in 1881 (private collection). JW's Arrangement in Grey and Black, No. 2: Portrait of Thomas Carlyle (YMSM 137), engraved by Richard Josey (1840-1906), reproductive engraver [more], had been published by H. Graves and Co. in December 1878. The common subject and their mutual involvement in etching and print publication provided points of contact between JW and Helmick. They were sufficiently friendly for JW to suggest Helmick came to live in the same building in Tite Street in 1881 (see Helmick to E. W. Godwin, 11 November 1881, #11789).