Letter (WCP6168.7143)


Wykeham House:


April 20. 1921

Dear Mr Wallace2,

I’ve only just returned from S[ain]t. Helen’s3 where we have been the last 3 weeks & I find the Civ[il]. list Draft4 here unforwarded so I send a cheque immediately & I regret it is late, because of the mistake in not sending it on. I am so sorry to hear from Mr. Marchant5 that your wife6 is not quite well yet. I am so sorry that the illness has kept on & I fear that this cold weather may be bad for her. [2] I hear from what he Mr. Marchant says that the expense of the illness is also an anxiety. It appears that just now we could not apply for an increase of the pension as he is already doing so in another direction. I fear, if I tried, I shall not succeed as I have had so little experience of that kind of appeal. But I can & will apply to the Scientific relief fund7 of the Roy[al]. Soc[iety].8for a temporary grant for immediately purposes & then we can consider the pension increase later. What sum would make things comfortable till next year at [3]9 the time when the Pensions are reconsidered — I think it is about March but am not sure? Would £25.0.0 or £50.0.0 be such as sum? I am writing to prepare the Committee10for an appeal from me[?].

We leave for Flanders11 on Friday (22nd.) but shall be back by May 2.

With kindest regards & hoping that your wife will soon quite recover, I am,

Yours sincerely, | E. B. Poulton12[signature]

The page is numbered WP16/1/109 [1 of 2] in pencil in the top LH corner.
Wallace, William Greenell (1871-1951) Electrical engineer, second son and third child of ARW.
Village on the east coast of the Isle of Wight, where the author and his wife had a second residence.
Civil List pensions are traditionally granted by the Sovereign upon the recommendation of the First Lord of the Treasury (Prime Minister) to "such persons only as have just claims on the royal beneficence or who by their personal services to the Crown, or by the performance of duties to the public, or by their useful discoveries in science and attainments in literature and the arts, have merited the gracious consideration of their sovereign and the gratitude of their country." It appears that William Greenell Wallace was still receiving the pension paid to his father.
Marchant, James (1857-1956) Free Church minister, social activist and philanthropist.
Wallace, Elizabeth Carr (née Whittle) (1888-1976) wife of recipient.
Fund set up in 1859 at the instigation of John Peter Gassiot "for assisting scientific men or their families when in need of money".
A learned society for Science founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II. ARW was made a Fellow in 1893.
The page is numbered WP16/1/109 [2 of 2] in pencil in the top LH corner.
Committee of the Royal Society (see Endnote 8).
The author’s younger son Ronald Poulton-Palmer was killed during World War I in Flanders, in May 1915.
Poulton, Edward Bagnall (1856-1943) British evolutionary biologist, friend of ARW and lifelong advocate of natural selection. He did pioneering work on warning or protective colouration in animals and became Hope Professor of Zoology at the University of Oxford in 1893.

Please cite as “WCP6168,” in Beccaloni, G. W. (ed.), Ɛpsilon: The Alfred Russel Wallace Collection accessed on 30 November 2023, https://epsilon.ac.uk/view/wallace/letters/WCP6168