The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Maughan
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System Number: 02557
Date: [February 1893][1]
Author: JW
Place: [Paris]
Recipient: George Henry Lewis[2]
Place: [London]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler L92
Document Type: ALd

I send you the copies marked - I think they [are] libellous enough! -

Now you will notice that though printed in Paris, the paper advertises in its own columns its ple public sale in London - you see that it is to be bought at the Railway Stations, & at 9. Coventry Street - Is This not is "publication" in England, is n't it? - & therefore the Proprietors therefore [sic] are as much open to prosecution as would be the Hawk Daily Telegraph or the Pall Mall -

I was indeed, some ten days ago, to call personally upon Messrs Mr Sewell[3] [sic] - (Mr Maughan[4] was out of town) - He is the younger partner - I told him everything about Ford[5] - & showed him the letter from Mr Allen[6], of New York, [three illegible words], concerning Ford's obtaining £100. from him upon the false pretence that the money was for me - you remember it - at the time of the proposed contract about America! - I hinted even that my simpler course would have been to communicate with Messrs Sewell & Maughan, through my lawyers Messrs Lewis & Lewis of Ely Place! What I proposed was that Sheridan Ford was a scoundrel & ought not fit [to] be on their paper -

Mr Selwyn thanked me - revealed to me that this paper was indeed [as?] [...]

This document is protected by copyright.


1.  [February 1893]
Dated from JW to G. H. Lewis, #02556, and Lewis & Lewis to Sewell & Maugham, letter dated 2 March 1893, #02558, to which this letter relates.

2.  George Henry Lewis
Sir George Henry Lewis (1833-1911), society lawyer [more]; see related letter, JW to G. H. Lewis, #02556.

3.  Mr Sewell
J. William Sewell, commissioner to administer oaths.

4.  Mr Maughan
Maughan, a lawyer in Paris.

5.  Ford
Sheridan Ford (1860-1922), poet, critic, politician and writer on art [more]. This letter relates to JW's attempted action against Ford for fraud (see F. H. Allen, affidavit, #00144, #11704; see also F. H. Allen to JW, #00141, and to H. A. Alexander, #00143). In 1888, backed by a syndicate of New York investors, Ford and his wife Mary Bacon Ford attempted to persuade JW to sign a contract to undertake a series of American etchings and a lecture tour (see M. B. Ford to JW, #01448). However, JW objected to the harsh terms of the contract and was suspicious of the Fords' motives. His fury also stemmed from a more recent incident over the publication of Whistler, James McNeill, The Gentle Art of Making Enemies, ed. Sheridan Ford, Paris, 1890. Ford, his original collaborator on the volume, quarrelled with JW and proceeded to publish his own unauthorised edition. Lewis and JW attempted to stop the publication during the spring of 1890 but only with limited success. See Whistler, James McNeill, The Gentle Art of Making Enemies, London and New York, 1890.

6.  letter from Mr Allen
The letter referred to is #00144.