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McGilvray (nee Hooker), Maria in correspondent [X]
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Correspondent
Hooker, Sir Joseph Dalton (6)
McGilvray (nee Hooker), Maria[X]
Date
expand1840 (1)
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Document type
letter (6)
JHC286
From:  Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker
To:  Maria McGilvray (nee Hooker)
Date:  18 August 1840
Classmark:  JDH/1/2 f.34, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Summary:  

JDH assures his sister, Maria Hooker, that she & their family are often in his thoughts during his time away from civilisation, enduring difficult conditions & ship's rations. Having been months at sea with no word from home JDH describes the joy he felt when they sailed up the Derwent River to land at Hobart, Van Diemen's Land [Tasmania], in the shadow of Mount Table or Wellington. The letters he received in Hobart brought JDH the news that his brother, William Dawson Hooker, was dead. He describes how he mourned as others celebrated their landfall. He had thought that Jamaica would improve his brother's pulmonary complaint. He is reassured that their parents have Maria with them in Glasgow to rely on in their grief. All JDH's shipmates, especially Mr McCormick are being very kind to him. Soon JDH will have work & duties to distract him from his sorrow, he will study the cryptogamic plants of Tasmania. JDH has had a visit from Dr Johnstone & will call on Jorgen Jorgensen, though he is a drunkard. Explains why he approves of his father, William Jackson Hooker's plan to leave Glasgow. Though he does not particularly like Glasgow it does have childhood memories for him & as long as his family are at Invereck he will long to be home there with them. He has sketches of Invereck on his cabin wall & everything he sees reminds him of Scotland & home, the cornfields & woods of Tasmania remind him of highland scenes at Loch Eck, Loch Lomond & the Trossachs. Sends his love to all his family.

Contributor:  Hooker Project
JHC345
From:  Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker
To:  Maria McGilvray (nee Hooker)
Date:  25 August 1841
Classmark:  JDH/1/3 f.261-268, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Summary:  

JDH is sad to hear from his sister Maria, that their sister Mary has been very ill. He hopes that a summer spent in Jersey has improved her health. He has sent her a picture of Madeira. JDH understands their grandfather [Joseph Hooker] is on his death bed. He is sure that their other sister, Elizabeth, will fully recover from her illness. JDH has just heard of their father, Sir William Jackson Hooker's, appointment as Director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. JDH has not been homesick but thoughts of home & family often distract him from his duties. He must concentrate however as they are to sail south to unknown latitudes again. He is glad that his niece Willielma is thriving. It is midnight & JDH is sitting in the Captain's cabin with a tom cat called Phantome for company. The only sounds the tide & chronometers, as snorers on ship are soon 'cured'. In the cabin there are portraits of the Queen, Washington, Christ & Peter, John Franklin & Captain Parry, also a scene of Weddel's ships in the southern latitudes. There are also books & instruments, clothes & specimens everywhere. There is a large table in the cabin for JDH's particular use & he defends it for himself by leaving his microscope out, which nobody dares move. JDH explains that he was up writing during the night whilst on watch: taking meteorological observations & maintaining the peace on ship. JDH recounts some things he has read in an issue of the ATHENAEUM: an advert for a copy of Greville's Cryptogamic Flora, which JDH asks be bought for McLeay; an account of a cylinder which exploded during an experiment to solidify carbonic acid gas; an extract from 'Dodd's Thoughtage' which mentioned JDH's presence on the Ross expedition. Since writing the above JDH has been on expeditions around the Bay of Islands with Dr Sinclair of the HMS 'Favourite'. Next they sail to Chatham Islands. Mentions some plants have been sent home to the Admiralty via Sydney. Compliments his acquaintance [William] Colenso.

Contributor:  Hooker Project
JHC310
From:  Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker
To:  Maria McGilvray (nee Hooker)
Date:  26 May 1842
Classmark:  JDH/1/2 f.102, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Summary:  

JDH writes to his sister, Maria. He wrote to others by the HMS 'Arrow' on 3 May 1842. HMS 'Champion' has stopped at the Falkland Islands & JDH met with Captain Holt, who is his 'scotch cousin' through familial links with Shelly of Barmouth & Tom Brightman's sister. The latest newspapers JDH has seen are from March with news of the Prince's christening, Queen's speech, bankruptcy of an unrelated Hooker, & death of James McCall of Daldowie. Mentions the failure of 'the African Expedition' & compares with their own Antarctic expedition. JDH has been on a trip to Port William with the Governor [Richard Clement Moody] on the HMS 'Alarm'. Describes the country around Port William. Compares a Port William grass known as 'tussac' with the 'true Tussac grass', which JDH thinks is Dactylis glomerata, & describes the habit of the latter in the Falklands. On the trip JDH collected seaweeds, lichens, new plants & few shells incl. rare Voluta magellanica. JDH has found more plants than expected in the Falklands, especially given the late season. The ship ['Erebus'] is being repaired. As it is now winter JDH's collecting will be confined to lower order plants. The days are short, the nights long & the weather stormy making life in a tent uncomfortable. He describes how they line the tent floor with gravel & sleep in 'blanket bags'. JDH likes Governor Moody, whose father was Lieutenant Governor in Guernsey. Mentions the return of Wilmot & Lefroy, Baron Humboldt & the King of Prussia visiting London. Davis is making a sketch of the ships in the ice for William Jackson Hooker, JDH will send oak to frame it. JDH would like info on the Hooker's new home at Kew. Notes that the Antarctica expedition has not been in the press. On the Queen's birthday they had a smart dinner. Wonders if Balfour or Arnott is the new Glasgow University Chair of Botany. JDH intends send Dawson a Matchero from Valparaiso. Asks Maria to send him new spectacles, an eye glass & some lichens: Cud-bear & Archill.

Contributor:  Hooker Project
JHC315
From:  Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker
To:  Maria McGilvray (nee Hooker)
Date:  4 September 1842
Classmark:  JDH/1/2 f.117-119, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Summary:  

JDH last wrote to his sister, Maria Hooker, in May. He is sending her some shells, which he briefly describes collecting & packing. He suggests that she, as a conchologist, should label them. The first specimen of Voluta magellanica [Adelomelon ancilla] has gone to the Government collection but the next will be for Maria. The only land shell in the Falklands is a minute Planorbis, the specimens of Murex sent are from the South Seas. JDH has also collected Auckland Island shells, Albatross eggs & specimens from New Zealand which will be sent later. Describes how isolated the Falklands are. Only Yule & JDH remain in their berth, Oakeley having been promoted to Lieutenant when McMurdo was invalided home & Sibbald is now 1st Lieutenant on the HMS 'Terror'. Describes their food rations & what fresh meat they can get in the Falklands, stock has also been delivered by the ship 'Carysfort' from Rio de Janeiro. Summer has arrived in the Falklands but there is little vegetation to show the seasonal change. JDH has been skating once during the winter freeze. Captain Gardiner, famed for his Zulu expedition, is in the Falklands waiting to take his family to Hazy Bay in the Straits of Magelhaens [Magellan] on the Patagonian coast. If Aunt Palgrave knows Mrs Gardiner's family in Hampstead she can tell them the Gardiners are all well. The 'Erebus' & 'Terror' will soon sail for a port near Cape Horn, probably St Martin's Cove in Hermit Island, where JDH hopes to see the natives described by both [Charles] Darwin & [James] Weddel. They will then go south towards the Antarctic pole again & hope to get further south than Weddel who reached 74 degrees latitude. JDH theorises that the channels in the ice are very changeable, describes sailing through pack ice as pleasant with opportunity for visiting from ship to ship. Explains why such visits are called 'Mollymawking' by Greenland fisherman. They also hunt seals & penguins & have snow ball fights on ice floes. Sends New Year wishes.

Contributor:  Hooker Project
JHC337
From:  Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker
To:  Maria McGilvray (nee Hooker)
Date:  13 May 1843
Classmark:  JDH/1/2 f.214-215, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Summary:  

JDH writes to his sister Maria Hooker, thanking her for a backlog of letters he received when at Simon's Bay [Simon's Town, South Africa]. Mentions Maria's visit to Dr Richardson at Haslar & his letters to Mrs Richardson going astray. At Cape Town JDH saw Baron Ludwig, who gave JDH a box with disappearing lid for Maria. Ludwig will send Elizabeth, JDH's other sister, some 'embroidery work of the Hottentots' [Khoikhoi]. JDH got no shells [for Maria] at Simon's Bay, he was promised a harp shell but sailed before receiving it, the species is the same as sent to their father, William Jackson Hooker, by Mr Telfair from Mauritius. Mrs Helps or the Wyldes may give JDH some shells at St Helena. Mr Helps is a chaplain whose daughter drowned on the 'Reliance'. JDH encourages Maria in her pursuit of singing & drawing & wishes his own drawing skills were better. Mentions the ATHENAEUM'S good review of their Uncle Francis Palgrave's HANDBOOK FOR TRAVELLERS IN NORTHERN ITALY. JDH prefers the ATHENAEUM to the LITERARY GAZETTE though the latter takes more notice of the Ross Antarctic Expedition. Has read about Joan of Arc, Tribune Rienzi, the Duke of Sutherland & agricultural chemistry in the QUARTERLY REVIEW & about British, French, American relations & the slave trade in the EDINBURGH REVIEW. He was also interested in an account of glaciers, having lived so long amongst the ice, but was less impressed by the views on education & a review of Moore's works. JDH now has only one 'messmate', there are advantages & disadvantages to the reduced number. There are few animals left on board, only sheep & goats. JDH had a kitten & two rabbits from the Falkland islands as pets, the kitten & one rabbit have died but he is bringing the remaining rabbit home for Elizabeth. JDH will soon be home to tell his family & friends about his travels, but fears he has got very little from the 'howling wilderness' of 'the South' except cold fingers & does not think another expedition will ever go there.

Contributor:  Hooker Project
JHC565
From:  Sir Joseph Dalton Hooker
To:  Maria McGilvray (nee Hooker)
Date:  2 February 1845
Classmark:  JDH/2/8 f.8-9, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Summary:  

No summary available.

Contributor:  Hooker Project