UNIVERSITY of GLASGOW

The Corresponence of James McNeil Whistler
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Documents associated with: Vanderbilt, Edith Stuyvesant
Record 4 of 24

System Number: 05918
Date: [1/14 December 1898][1]
Author: George Washington Vanderbilt[2]
Place: Biltmore
Recipient: JW
Place: [Paris]
Repository: Glasgow University Library
Call Number: MS Whistler V7
Document Type: ALS


[embossed:] BILTMORE HOUSE.
BILTMORE, NORTH CAROLINA.

'1898.'[3]

No Master has turned up here and you know the old adage[4] about Mahomet and the mountain: so dear Mr Whistler you may expect to see my wife[5] and self about Jan 8th as we expect [p. 2] to sail Dec 28th and will only make a short stay in London.

When the committee of the portrait exhibition now on in New York asked me for your portrait[6] of me I was very glad to be able to say it was still on the other side.

[p. 3] The truth of the matter is that I know when once it hangs on these walls I want it never to leave them and so if it is to be exhibited in Europe at all [I] prefer to have it over before the canvass crosses the ocean. We can decide when I see you. I am [p. 4] hoping you will feel like doing the small oval[7] of my wife I spoke about last summer, and will get it well started this January. We expect to be in Paris one month, and then go to Florence and Rome for another month.

[p. 5] We have been having a lot of people here and enjoyed the beautiful fall season immensely. With all the bad weather in the north it has been superb here and we have been able to golf and croquet [p. 6] and be out of doors constantly.

I send this to the rue du Bac assuming you are in Paris. My hotel in Paris will be the Bristol as usual and I will stop at Thomas's[8] for the few days in London. I will be so glad to see you again and have [p. 7] missed you more than a little.

Au revoir and my wife joins in messages of affection from yours devotedly

George Vanderbilt


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Notes:

1.  [1/14 December 1898]
Dated from the references to Edith Vanderbilt and to the date of sailing (see below).

2.  George Washington Vanderbilt
George Washington Vanderbilt (1862-1914), collector [more].

3.  '1898.'
Added in another hand, in pencil.

4.  adage
If the mountain will not go to Mohamed, Mohamed must go to the mountain.

5.  wife
Edith Stuyvesant Vanderbilt (1873-1958), née Dresser, wife of G. W. Vanderbilt [more]. The Vanderbilts had recently married.

6.  portrait
Portrait of George W. Vanderbilt (YMSM 481). Vanderbilt commissioned the work in May 1897 (see G. Vanderbilt to JW, #05914). The exhibition was probably the Loan exhibition of Portraits for the Benefit of the Orthopaedic Hospital, National Academy of Design, New York, 1898-1899.

7.  small oval
Ivoire et or: Portrait de Madame Vanderbilt (YMSM 515). Edith Vanderbilt sat for the portrait from June 1899 (E. Vanderbilt to JW, #05913).

8.  Thomas's
Thomas's Hotel, 25 and 26, Berkeley Square, W.