The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler

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Documents associated with: 104th Exhibition of the Royal Academy of Arts, Royal Academy, London, 1872
Record 5 of 17

System Number: 06551
Date: 7 May 1872
Author: Anna Matilda Whistler[1]
Place: London
Recipient: Jane Wann[2]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler W544
Document Type: ALS

2 Lindsey Houses Chelsea

Tuesday evening May 7th

My dear Mrs Wann

I must explain for my Son[3] - the Doctor - not calling to see you he has been so awkwardly circumstanced, since he was obliged to discharge his Servant[4] on Saturday night very suddenly! as when he went home about ten ocl he found her entertaining very unworthy acquaintance, he came to me as he does in all his distresses, on Sunday morning, to send me to his house, but I had gone to Church & as he had to hasten back, we did not meet til yesterday. he had answered an advertisement & I hope he may be successful, as it is so important, I braved the weather yesterday & went in a Cab to shew the inexperienced Irish char-woman how to manage pro-tem, how gladly should I have staid to help keeping the nice order throughout, which tho much to be lamented Hannah did, for nearly two years! but I am [p. 2] particularly required here, while a lady is daily coming to the Studio[5] I must be here to receive Mrs Leyland[6], besides, Willie's snug house has no spare-room, how I should have enjoyed under brighter skies to have taken him as my escort to your hotel! he hoped to call upon you & Mr Wann[7] this afternoon, & will have done so, unless some one deprives him of the pleasure of doing so. Tell your Brother[8] that his two favorites my boys have not yet become independent, but are from necessity as closely confined to work as when he was in London, or they would have delighted in yours & Mr Wanns society.

You were always kind to me my dear friend & your coming so out of your way to indulge my wish to see you, I shall never forget. I shall think of & pray for you (the inseparables) on your voyage, and I request dear Mr Gamble to write me of the happy re-union of you four! at Homeland[9], share my love with him & Harriet[10], God bless you my beloved friends[.] Believe me dear Mrs Wann

Affectionately & truly yours

Anna M Whistler

[p. 3] I suppose of course yourself & Mr Wann will go to the Exhibitions[11] at the Royal Academy & the South Kensington tomorrow. You have had such unfavorable weather during your visit to England. how thankfully you will enjoy getting home! Alas, how depressing these leaden skies & damp cold atmosphere is to me, but as I could not be happy separated from my only two, I look to the bright home Above! as the only change for me. Remember me to all who ask after me -

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1.  Anna Matilda Whistler
Anna Matilda Whistler (1804-1881), née McNeill, JW's mother [more].

2.  Jane Wann
Jane Wann (1822-1875), née Gamble, wife of S. Wann [more]. They were on a visit to London, where they stayed at Langham Hotel, Portland Place, London; see AMW to James H. Gamble, 13 March 1872, #06548.

3.  Son
William McNeill Whistler (1836-1900), physician, JW's brother [more].

4.  Servant
AMW explained more on the 'moral' status of Hannah, William McNeill Whistler's servant, in #06549.

5.  Studio
The studio of James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903), artist [more], at Lindsey Row.

6.  Mrs Leyland
Frances Leyland (1836-1910), née Dawson [more]; she was posing for Symphony in Flesh Colour and Pink: Portrait of Mrs Frances Leyland (YMSM 106).

7.  Mr Wann
Samuel Wann (b. 1820), merchant, brother-in-law of J. H. Gamble [more].

8.  Brother
James H. Gamble (b. 1820), clerk [more].

9.  Homeland
Homeland, Staten Island was the home of James H. Gamble and his sister Jane Wann prior to 1872. It seems here that Gamble after 1872 made a new home at Norland with his wife. The Wanns kept living at Homeland.

10.  Harriet
Harriet Gamble, née Wheaton, wife of J. H. Gamble.

11.  Exhibitions
The International Exhibition, South Kensington Museum, London, 1872, where JW was showing the Symphony in White, No. 2: The Little White Girl (YMSM 52), and the 104th Exhibition of the Royal Academy of Arts, Royal Academy, London, 1872, where JW's Arrangement in Grey and Black: Portrait of the Painter's Mother, (YMSM 101), was shown; see AMW to James H. Gamble, 13 March 1872, #06548.