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Record Details

Wrapper from the Photographic Experiments of Sir John Herschel, 1842

Inventory Number: 69245
Object Type:
Persons: Sir John Frederick William Herschel
Date Created: 1841
Accession Number: 1928-71
Brief Description: Loosely folded packet made from a re-used letter-cover, originally addressed to S. H. Christie and postmarked December 21 and 22, 1842. The wrapper (packet 34 in the Museum's numbering) contains 62 experimental photographs dating from 1839-44.
The so-called 'Christie letter' contains the principal group of miscellaneous specimens from Herschel's 1839-44 experiments. Although it is possible that it did originally contain these or some of these photographs when sent to Christie (the tuppenny stamp and the fact that it returned into Herschel's possession might both suggest it), justifying the name that Schultze gave it, the re-use throughout the Herschel collection of scrap paper including other letter-covers as wrappers and spacers robs the assumption of confidence.

For fuller descriptive and historical commentary see narratives.
Primary Inscriptions: 'J.F.W.H. --[long dash] | Photographic Specimens | [longer line of writing heavily crossed out and illegible]' [in Herschel's hand].
Provenance: Presented by Miss Herschel and Lady Lubbock in 1928. They were the two surviving and youngest children of Sir John Herschel (Francisca and Constance).
Collection Group: Herschel's Photographic Experiments
Material(s): Paper
Height Width Depth Diameter Unit
116 142 mm


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