From Joseph Hooker   10 December 1869

Cambridge Decr 10 /69

My dear Mueller

I am here holding our Examination in Nat. Science & seize the interval to tell you that your friend Dr Rees called on me 2 days ago at Kew & spent the afternoon. I introduced him to his fellow voyager, the Todea, which he tells me had a cabin to itself, during the Voyage — this no doubt accounts for its excellent condition, for indeed the Hold is destructive to live plants. Poor fellow he was thrown out of a Wagonette in Wales & so severly hurt that he has been an invalid ever since — a Lady who was with him was killed on the spot.1 He tells me that he returns in March or April & will take a case for you — I shall send Sarracenias again & Nepenthes, if these do not arrive in good condition.

My Curator is packing the Veratrums for you.2 I shall put them in damp moss & bore holes in the little box & trust it to the P. &. O.

The little parcel of seeds which you were so good as to send by Dr Rees are all damped & bad, he tells me that they lay for several months at the docks with his luggage before he could get them out. Would it be possible to establish young plants with your Viscum & send them in a Ward's case by private hand? I say by private hand as I am sure that there will be difficulty about it. We have often tried to introduce these things in vain. The plan would be to get the seeds of the Loranth. to germinate on some young healthy potted plant & to plunge the pot in the Ward's case. Pray always fasten the earth & pots in the cases with cross battens of wood as these cases get constantly turned topsy-turvy in landing or in the Railway stations.

Thanks for your paper on the new Leichardt search.3 I hope you may be successful in getting it up but I fear that the interest in the matter has permanently subsided. Here we had hard work to get up a monument to Faraday.— The fact is that the demands of charity for the living are so great, that the memory of the dead has no chance.

We have Dr Anderson of the Calcutta Gardens in England, & working daily at Kew for the Flora Indica with Dr Thomson, so I am in hopes that this work will soon go on. I have left an enormous amount of matter all in working order at the time my father died, & a complete catalogue resumé with habitats & references of the 12000 species & Thoms had worked them to Violaceae when his health compelled him to break off.

Ever my dear Mueller

Sincerely Yr

J D Hooker

 

24th. I have had a day with Mr Thozet his case has arrived in fair order4

 

Nepenthes

Sarracenia

Todea

Veratrum

Violaceae

Viscum

 
The Chelmsford Chronicle, (30 July 1869, p, 5, col. e) reports an accident on 26 July 1869 in which Dr W. C. Rees was driving a wagonette, accompanied by Mrs Arthur Messent, Mrs J Brown, wife of the owner, and some children. Mrs Messent was killed by fracturing the base of her skull, while Rees’ knee was damaged. However, Bocking, where the accident occurred, is not in Wales but in Essex.
Requested in M to J. Hooker, 14 October 1869.
Not identified.
See M to J. Hooker, 5 October and 10 October 1869.

Please cite as “FVM-69-12-10a,” in Ɛpsilon: The Ferdinand von Mueller Collection accessed on 20 September 2021, https://epsilon.ac.uk/view/vonmueller/letters/69-12-10a