Published letter (WCP4990.5427)

[1]1[p. 14]

"9, St. Mark's Crescent, N.W., January 21st, 1870.

"Sir,—I have ascertained that the Editor of the "Field" is willing to act as referee in the matter between us. I have to propose therefore that we each place £500 at once in Coutts' Bank, 95, Strand, with instructions that, up to March 1st next, it is only to be paid to the order of one of us, on a cheque signed by Mr. John Henry Walsh, the Editor of the "Field," who has an account at Coutts'. After that date the money to be at our own disposal, which will be the case if any unforeseen circumstance over which we have no control, prevent the trial being made.

[2] [p. 15], "By this means the money will be perfectly safe. The reason I ask for its being deposited at once, is, that I must go to some expense and considerable trouble in getting a telescope and other necessary instruments, and in finding a suitable spot, and as the time you have named is short, I must begin at once, and cannot do without the certainty that the trial will come off.

"I may state that the Editor of the "Field" is a perfect stranger to me.

"I remain, yours very faithfully,


"I believe the Bedford River near Downham Market, Norfolk will have to be the place. The "Field" will publish the result of the experiment.—A.R.W."

Editor Charles H. Smith's Note: A set of eight letters from Wallace to flat-earther John Hampden, concerning the Bedford Canal experiment. Also included is their Memorandum of Agreement. These constituted the last several pages of a pamphlet by Hampden (?) entitled Is Water Level or Convex After All

Please cite as “WCP4990,” in Beccaloni, G. W. (ed.), Ɛpsilon: The Alfred Russel Wallace Collection accessed on 17 May 2021, https://epsilon.ac.uk/view/wallace/letters/WCP4990