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Letters and Documents relating to William Marsh the London Banker 

 (William Marsh 1755-1846)





28 October 1795. 
Lot detail: #180 - 19 October 2005 - Christies [London] Lot Number 180

Description [ Militaria ] HORATIO, VISCOUNT NELSON (1758-1805) Autograph letter signed (with the right hand, 'Horatio Nelson') to Messrs Marsh and Creed, Leghorn, 28 October 1795, one page, 4to (integral leaf removed, slightly discoloured, small smudge in lower left corner, small tear and split in left hand edge). Instructions to his agents to pay '35 œ sterling' to Captain Wolseley, 'and I need not say that you will always attend to Mrs Nelson's demands for what money she may call for' and on the difficulty of finding time to get his accounts done. Nelson had written to Fanny the previous year that she should not be 'sparing' in sending to Marsh and Creed (the Navy Agents in the Strand for money. Estimate - 1500-2000





7 September 1798.
Auction House: Bonhams & Butterfields.  New York. Auction Date: 15 December 2009.

Description: NELSON WRITES HIS LONDON AGENTS SOON AFTER THE BATTLE OF THE NILE. Autograph Letter Signed ("Horatio Nelson"), 2 p, 4to, on board the Vanguard, September 7, 1798, to Messrs Marsh & Creed, regarding Genovese ships seized off Corsica, with integral autograph address leaf, leaves soiled and creased, loss to left margin of address leaf (repaired_, wax seal present, matted and framed to 18 ¼ by 12 ½ inches.  Little more than a month after Nelson's spectacular victory at the Battle of the Nile, and before he is honored with his baronetcy, he writes his London agents to clear up an issue regarding certain enemy ships: "I send you a letter which you may or may not show or give to Mr. Heseltine. The Vessel mentioned never was seized as Prize of War, nor is the Vessel in our possession, the corn sold to our troops which you name the money for, bought into the funds, but no interest by my directions to you ever received [?] at the disposal of the Adm or Secretary of [?] the Adm Count I believe have nothing to do in the business it was a mistake making the bills payable to me for she was in Mr. [?] change. Although Genoese Vessels & Islands where seized by my orders, yet I believe the Captain making the Seize is only named and not the flag officer, but it seems determined to bother me, for my active services & to prevent other officers from doing their duty."



4 August 1804.

Lot Number 138.  Bonhams Bond St, 5 July 2005.  Description "asses Milk and a few Months quiet may set me up again for another campaign" Horatio Nelson Autograph letter signed ("Nelson & Bronte"), to his friend and naval agent William Marsh, of Messrs Marsh & Creed, looking forward to his imminent recall ("...I shall probably if I live see You soon, asses Milk and a few Months quiet may set me up again for another campaign. .") and urging Marsh to pursue his claims ("...I am sure You will do every thing for my interest but certainly I would not push the Claim if I did not believe that I have full as much right as many who have claimed for Toulon. I was sent for Troops to take care of it and got them by My own exertion..."), in which he hopes he is supported by Alexander Davison and Messrs Booth & Haslewood, one page, 4to, paper watermarked 1803, traces of mounting on verso, Victory, 4 August 1804 E3000-4000 Written when Nelson was watching the French fleet bottled up in Toulon, and trying to draw them out into battle. Believing, as he wrote the same day to Sir Evan Nepean, that "my shattered carcass requires rest", he had put in for leave, but in the event was to remain at sea for a further year, until the twenty-five days shore- leave just before Trafalgar (when he took the first opportunity to call on Marsh, along with visits to William Pitt and the Admiralty). This letter appears to be unpublished and is not printed by Nicolas, Dispatches and Letters.




20 October 1806.  Letter from Lady Nelson to William Marsh.  Regarding various financial transactions.  From Page 612 of “Nelson’s Letters to his Wife and other documents 1785-1831” published 1958.

Lady Nelson to William Marsh


October 20, 1806

My Dear Sir, - I have sent you Mr. Western’s letter which will tell you my business with the executors is settled. The stamp receipt which he sent me I signed, it was to empower my bankers to receive the amount of my annuity which was due last June. I am glad the business is all settled. Purchase £1,000 (one thousand pounds) money into the same stock for me. I shall then have enough in your hands to answer my expenses till January. As I have no intention of going to town till the spring, I desired Mr. Western to deliver his bill to you. As to the amount, I can form no idea, but I beg you will do what is proper and customary on these occasions.

Many thanks for your letter and the inclosed was quite new to me. I deferred answering it till I could get a box, which contained what I had promised. Your Mr.Purvis is returned from Lymington and I shall soon to Bath. I must own Malvern air possesses qualities far beyond description.

Believe me dear sir, your sincere and obliged, Frances H. Nelson and Bronte.




29 January 1810. Letter from Lady Nelson to William Marsh.  General letter.  From Page 616 of “Nelson’s Letters to his Wife and other documents 1785-1831” published 1958.

Lady Nelson to William Marsh

Bath, 8 Russel Street

January 29, 1810

My Dear Sir, - The vase the Patriotic Fund voted me is finished and ii will thank you to direct Messrs. Rundle and Bridges to send it down to me taking care to have it insured if necessary.

More than a month since I enclosed to the house a letter my son had written to Mrs. Nisbet, directed to her at her brother’s Mr. Parry, who resides in Berners St. and as he has no answer I fear it has not reached here, therefore will thank you to make some enquiries. The authors has sent me a presentation copy of my late Lord’s life, which I hope will not only please, but give satisfaction. I desired Mr. McArthur to  put me down for one copy which you will pay for and send me.

The Earl, Countess, and Lady C. Nelson came to Bath three weeks since, their good  child not only sought me, but brought her father and  mother to my house: I received them, they were much affected, and I think they have received some satisfaction from a shake of my hand.

I hope my god daughter and all your family are well make my kind regards to them. Bath is very gay – but not so full as last year – I hope if any part of your family comes here you will let me know. My son desires his best respects – And I remain Dear Sir

Your obliged and sincere Frances H. Nelson and Bronte



26 February1816.  Letter from William Marsh to James Caldwell regarding the engagement between their children Arthur Marsh and Anne Caldwell.  The outside postmark is 26 Feb 1816 and the seal in black wax is the head of a king with a beard and a crown.  Addressed to James Caldwell, Linley Wood, Lawton, Cheshire.  The letter reads as follows:

Norfolk Street 26th Feb 1816


I had the pleasure of meeting my son here on Friday afternoon, not having expected him till this week!  I cannot therefore resist troubling you with a letter to assure you that the happiness that he expresses at the result of his journey to Linley Wood, affords me the highest gratification as it also does that you have referred the final arrangements of all the necessary Preliminaries to your son and myself.

Arthur I find has explained to you my recent disappointment here!  The Mortification on every account is severe, but I confidently hope that “good will come not of Evil” and that this house will prove a source for progressive comforts and of ample Fortune eventually to Arthur, independent of any other means that may be open to him!  What however is certain, your son and I will define and settle, and upon all points relating to the future, I can only assure you he shall receive the most candid information in my Power.  Mrs Marsh and my Daughters anticipate with all the warmth of Friendship and Youth the only and intimate acquaintance with there intended Sister, yourself and Family and I as truly join in their feelings – at present however I can only add that I remain with sincere respect Dear Sir, Your most obedient humble servant

William Marsh




8 September 1817.  The following legal document is a lease agreement between William Marsh and James Fudge regarding No13 Sloane Square, London.  This document is in the archive of the Stafford Record Office 4229/1/1.

The document reads as follows:

An Agreement made and Entered into the Eight day of September in the year of our Lord One thousand eight hundred and Seventeen Between William Marsh of Knightsbridge in the County of Middlesex Esquire and Elizabeth his Wife of the one part and James Fudge of Sloane Street Chelsea in the County of Middlesex Cheesemunger of the other part as follows. 
The said William Marsh and Elizabeth his wife do hereby agree to let unto the said James Fudge all that messuage or Tenement situate and being in Sloane Square Chelsea Known by the No.13 late in the tenure or occupation Sarah Majindre deceased and now of  Kew… from the Twenty Ninth day of September now next ensuing, for and during the Term of Twenty one years from thence next ensuing At and under the yearly rent of Forty two pounds to be paid and payable quarterly free and clear of and from all Taxes tortes charges assessments and impositions already or hereafter to be taxed rated charged assessed or imposed in the said Messuage or Tenement and premises hereby agreed to be let or on the yearly rent to be paid for the same by Act or Authority apportionment or otherwise howsoever the Ground rent - - - and any future property Tax which may hereafter be imposed only Excepted And also that they the said William Marsh and Elizabeth his wife shall and will grant a Lease of the said premises for the said Term of Twenty one years to commence on the said Twenty Ninth day of September next as and under the said yearly rent of Forty two pounds payable as aforesaid In which said Indenture of Lease shall be contained all the Common and usual Covenants between Landlords and Tenants And also a Clause that the said James Fudge his Exors Admins and Assigns shall paint all the External Wood and Iron work of and belonging to the said Messuage or Tenement and Offices thereto belonging once in every four years during the said Term in a proper  workmanlike manner And also a Clause that the said James Fudge his Exors Advisors or assigns shall not during the said term use Exercise carry on or follow or cause permit or suffer to be used exercised

carried on or followed in or upon the said  premises or any part thereof the Trades or Businesses of a victualler or public house or any nuisance or offensive trades without the license in writing of the said William Marsh and Elizabeth  his wife or one of them their or one of their Exors Advisors or assigns for that purpose first obtained.

And the said James Fudge doth hereby agree to take the said Messuage or Tenement and premises of the said William Marsh and Elizabeth his Wife for the said Term of Twenty one years at the said yearly rent of Forty two pounds payable in manner aforesaid And to accept the said Indenture of lease so to be granted as aforesaid and duly Execute a Counterpart thereof which said Indenture of Lease and the Counterpart thereof is to be prepared by the Solicitor for the time being of the said William Marsh and Elizabeth his Wife and the Expense of the preparing the same and also of this Agreement and the Duplicate thereof is to be borne and paid as follows that it to say One Moiety thereof by the said William Marsh and the other Moiety thereof by the said James Fudge  and the Furniture and Fixtures in the said Messuage or Tenement  being the property of the said William Marsh It is hereby further agreed that the said James Fudge shall and will pay for the said Furniture and Fixtures such a sum of Money as the same shall amount to upon a valuation and appraisement thereof by two indifferent persons one to be named and chosen by the said William Marsh and the other by the said James Fudge And in case such two persons shall differ then as a third person to be named by such two referees shall determine and adjudge to be the value thereof such sum of Money so to be ascertained as aforesaid to be paid by the said James Fudge to the said William Marsh previous to the said James Fudge taking possession of the said premises under this Agreement  In Witness whereof the said parties have hereunto set their  Hands the day and year just above written.

Witness                                                                       William Marsh

Nathaniel Fulcher                                                       Elizabeth Marsh

Kings Road Chelsea                                                   James Fudge





  1. Manuscript catalogue listing the paintings owned by William Marsh. Also separately, a copy of the printed catalogue of the Dutchess of Kingston’s sale in 1789 at which William Marsh bought a number of paintings.

List of Pictures, bought at Duchess of Kingston’s Sale, of Mr Elme, Fairburn, and at different places and sales! Between 1788 an 1820

Subject & Master        Particular Merits First Cost        Repairs &c             Framing          Total Expense


  1. A Large Picture of Vandeveldes - £21.0.0


  1. Ditto by Ricart – £21.0.0


  1. Ditto by Rembrant - £4.4.0.


  1. Ditto Two Fryers Heads - £2.2.0


  1. Ditto a small Moonlight - £1.1.0


  1. Ditto a Small Picture of a Waterfall by Muchuron - £7.7.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


7.A Storm the Shipwreck of Sn Cloudy Shovel V-Velde - £7.7.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. A small Picture Sheep Du Jardens - £1.11.6


  1. Rysdalls Ferry Boat, small - £10.18.0 [probably Jacob van Ruisdael 1628-1683 or Salomon van Ruysdael 1601-1670]


  1. A Droll Picture Valantine - £7.18.0 –


  1. A Small Landscape Begayn - £7.18.0 – Repairs £3.3.0


  1. A Large Landscape Foquire - £21.0.0


  1. A Domestic of Rubens at Work - £6.6.0


  1. A Picture of Goats & Sheep by Rosa D’ [Tevely?] - £5.5.0


  1. Large Landscape by Foqueer - £4.4.0


  1. A Large Picture Fortune Teller - £42.0.0.


  1. A View of Holland. - £7.7.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Tilburge - £2.2.0


  1. Small Head Estade. - £3.3.0


  1. A Florence Piece by Verelst. - £1.1.0


  1. A Lady’s Head on Copper. - £3.3.0


  1. A small Droll by Duck Hals - £4.4.0


  1. A small Van Goyen Smuglers. - £4.4.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Two landscapes Twaniveld - £42.0.0 – Repairs £10.10.0

Paid a man for Procuring them.- £ 1.1.0


  1. An Upright Landscape Nimugen - £10.10.0


  1. A Landscape by David Teniers - £12.12.0


  1. Sophonesba - £31.0.0 - £6.6.0


  1. A Mountebank Hemskirk. - £5.5.0


  1. Landscape Wenix - £12.12.0 – Repairs £5.5.0


  1. A small Picture of Cattle. - £4.4.0


  1. A Small Picture on Copper Frost - £4.4.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Picture Fruit - £21.0.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


33, 34. Two small Pictures Mariasky - £10.10.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. Large Landscape Both - £12.12.0 – Repairs £5.5.0


  1. Small Garden Conversation - £7.17.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. Buildings and Figures Linlibeck - £2.2.0


  1. Large Landscape on a Pannel, Rysdales ferry Boat.- £11.16.0 – Repairs £10.10.0


  1. A Large Picture by Meucheron. - £15.15.0


  1. A Sea Piece a Chace - £9.9.0 – Repairs £3.3.0


  1. A Picture of a Distressed Bag-piper - £10.10.0


  1. Smoaking [Sweaking?] Figure by Teniers - £10.10.0


  1. A Fine Drawing of Phillipo Laiera - £5.5.0


  1. A Bridge Woven Picture by Both - £2.15.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Two Heads Teniers, Man & Woman - £5.5.0 – Repairs £3.3.0


  1. Vangoyen with Gothic Castle - £10.10.0 – Repairs £3.3.0


  1. A man Sleeping - £3.3.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. A man and Woman Flemish – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. A Sandbank by Rysdall - £10.10.0 - £2.2.0


  1. Moonlight by Vandemear - £10.10.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Battle Piece - £12.12.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Garden of Love – Repairs £21.0.0


  1. Vangoyen Without Water – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. Large Vangoyen – Repairs £10.10.0


  1. Tabias & Angel by Moucheron - £12.15.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Flyght into Egypt by Van Balen - £5.5.0


  1. Droll Picture Hams Kirk - £5.5.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. Droll Man & Woman Sporting


  1. Landscape Waterloo - £12.12.0 – Repairs £3.3.0


  1. Cattle with a White Horse - £7.7.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. Calm by Brooking - £6.16.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. An Old Man Lighting his Pipe


  1. Pitching a boat by Moonlight - £6.6.0


  1. Landscape by Roland Savory - £5.5.0


  1. Two small Landscapes by Wilson - £8.8.0


  1. One Large Baccanel


  1. One Ditto Ditto – Repairs £10.10.0


  1. A Droll fellow Huggin a Pitcher - £3.3.0


  1. Landscape by Wilson - £14.14.0


  1. A Man Playing on Music by Oslade - £7.13.0


  1. A Cavern by D Teniers Style of Rubens - £12.12.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. A Sea Fight by Van Deist – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Venetian Royalty - £12.12.0


  1. Picture of Dead Game with a Frame - £20.9.6 – Total Expense £20.9.6


  1. A Head by Ostade - £3.13.6


  1. Flemish Wake - £21.0.0


  • - - - -


  1. Mans Head by Francis Hals - £2.2.0 – Expense £1.1.0


  1. Large Picture, Dead Game - £15.4.6 – Repairs £12.12.0 – Framing £21.0.0


  1. A Small Landscape of Brugall - £3.3.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. Holy Family - £3.13.6 – Repairs £1.1.0


  1. Bears Drinking - £3.3.0 – Repairs £2.2.0


  1. Madona an Infant - £13.13.0 – Repairs £3.3.0


  1. An Old Woman Head and Flower Piece - £5.5.0 – Repairs 2.2.0


  1. Shepherds Addoration - £4.14.6 – Repairs - £1.1.0


  • - -


  1. A Pleasant Landscape with the Ruins by Vangoyen - £10.10.0 – Repairs £1.1.0


Five Pictures Purchased by Walker of Grassley.

One Historical - £14.14.0

One Sex Piece - £10.10.0

One Fruit Piece – £8.8.0

A School by Gstade - £6.6.0 – Repairs £2.2.0

One Head - £4.4.0 – Repairs £2.2.0

                        £44.2.0            Repairs£4.4.0

2 Sketches Rheubens.

Garden of Love

2 Flemish by Vanderbank

A View of Dort by Cuyp Senior – Repairs £4.4.0

A View in Italy by Wilson

A Large Picture, Beast.

The Visitation of the Virgin.

Fine Evening View by Dehenesh – Repairs £10.10.0

Woody Scene by Brugall.


Pair of Sea Pieces by Brooking.

A Landscape by Gasper Pouschin – Repairs £4.4.0

The Addoration of the Shepherds by Bramer

A Small Storm by Vandervelde – Repairs £2.2.0

A Small Frost by Edima [Endima?]

An Incantation of Witches by D Teniers – Repairs £2.2.0

Town on Fire by Vanderheel

A Frost Piece VAnuden - £3.3.0

An Italian Sea Port.

A Landscape by Van Balen.

Jupiter & Io.

Two Views in Holland by Marns

An Italian View by Swanevelt

Two Italian Pictures by Lucateli – Repairs £6.6.0

                                    £153.2.0            Repairs £26.5.0

4th October 1787. Bill of Expenses to Farnham - £5.13.0

November Bill Delivered for Time and Expenses to Farnham. - £12.15.0

December A Set of Burches Views in England. £0.5.0


2nd April 1789.A Set of Ditto Ditto - £0.5.0

Three Brushes for Pictures and Frames - £0.8.0

Paid a man for not bidding against me at the Dutchess of Kingston Sale - £2.2.0

Miniature Picture and Frame of Mr Marsh Junior -

Time, Coach Hire & Portage.

Set of Birch’s Views in England - £0.5.0


  1. Gardner &c. Cleaning &c. £1.1.0

5th April. Paid for three [sprite?] Landscapes - £65.12.6

10th May. 1791. A Kitcat Landscape by Artois - £21.0.0

A Landscape by Gasper Poussin, Mr Davis - £42.0.0



25 June. Received at three payments - £101.6.0

24th July. Received - £100.0.0

4th Oct. Received - £20.0.0

25th Oct. Received - £42.0.0

26th Oct. Received - £50.0.0

15th Nov. Received - £50.0.0

Holburn Received Money for 3 Old Pictures - £8.8.0

4th Dec. Received - £96.15.0



12th January. Received - £50.0.0

Received 7 Pictures - £10.10.0

[lined scribbled out.]

2nd August &

3rd October. Received to Purchase 5 Pictures - £40.0.0 + £17.7.0

Mr Marsh paid Mr Elmer for Mr Walker - £50.0.0

8th November. Received 

5th December. To Purchase 27 Pictures - £50.0.0

27th December. Received - £100.0.0

Received by Draft to Purchase a Picture by Dusart - £21.0.0



22nd May. Received - £66.4.0

3rd July. Received by Draft - £100.0.0

3rd October. Received, Bank Note - £15.0.0



28th January. Received Draught of £30.0.0 Carried Over - £887.14.-


Brought over.



3rd October 1788. Received - £17.17.0 [crossed out]

Ditto Received. - £908.6.0 [crossed out] £101.6.0 [cross out]

                                    £1001.12.0 [crossed out]



18th March. Received on account - £100.0.0

29th May. Received by Draught - £42.0.0

6th November. Received by Ditto from Willey - £50.0.0



10th January. Received a Draught for - £31.10.0

23rd April. Cash - £3.3.0

10th May 1791. Received by Two Draughts - £63.0.0




Catalogue [printed]


A Catalogue of All the Rich Household Furniture, Pier Glasses of Distinguished Magnitude, Collection of Pictures, Sideboard of Plate, China, Linen, Fire Arms, Damask Hangings, and other valuable Effects, Late the Property of Her Grace the Duchess of Kingston, deceased, At her Grace’s Mansion, situate between Knightsbridge and Kensington. Which will be sold by Auction, by Mr. Christie, (By Order of the Administrators) On the Premises on Wednesday, May 20th. 1789 and three following days. N.B. The Collection of Pictures comprises the Fourth Day’s Sale, Saturday the 23rd.

The Whole to be Viewed on Monday and Tuesday [hole in page.] Mall, at One Shilling each, wh-  - Purchasers.


Conditions of Sale.


A Catalogue.

First Day’s Sale.

Wednesday, May 20th,1789

No. 1 The Venetian Room.

No. II Large Front Room, One Pair.

No. III Dressing Room Ground Floor

No. IV Miscellaneous Articles

No. V Linen

No. VI Butler’s Pantry

No. VII Rooms over the Kitchen

No. VIII Kitchen, Yard and Offices.

No. IX Porter’s Lodge and Courtyard.

No. X Bake House

No. XI Rooms Over the Stables

No. X11 Coach Yard and Stable – Garden Tool, &c

No. XIII Dairy – Field.


Second Day’s Sale

Thursday, May 21st 1789

No. XIV First Garret, Left Hand

No. XV The Next Garret.

No. XVI Garrett Opposite

No. XVII Garrett Adjoining

No. XVIII Books.
No. XIX China, Blue and White.

Enamel’d and Burnt-In, Glass.

No. XX Chintz Room, Ground Floor

No. XXI Print Room

No. XXII Hall.

No. XXIII The Wardrobe

No. XXIV The Lower Hall and Passage.

No. XXV Servants Hall.

No. XXVI Steward’s Room

No. XXVII Lumber Room

No. XXVIII Lower Passage.

No. XXIXX Laundry and Room Over.


Third Day’s Sale

Friday the 22nd of May 1789


No. XXX. Attic Lobby

No. XXXI Small Front Bed Chamber, One Pair.

No. XXXII Salloon

No. XXXIII Eating Parlor

No. XXXIV Fire Arms, Swords, &c.

No. XXXV Plate, Plated Articles.

No. XXXVI Housekeeper’s Room

No. XXXVII Housekeeper’s Bedchamber.

No. XXXVIII Kitchen, Coppers.


Fourth Day’s Sale

Saturday the 2nd May 1789


No. XXXIX Pictures

In the Hall

Servants Room

Small Nursery Room

  1. Hals. 22. Two. A man’s portrait, and a madona weeping by Trevisani. £2.2.0


The Bed Room below satirs.

The Hall and lower Apartments

The Hall

The Nursery

Fyte – 36. A large picture with dogs and game, return from the Chace. £15.4.6 [14 ½ Guin]

Breughel – 42. Two small landscapes £3.3.0 (3 Guin)

Huens – 44. Two. A small Holy Family, and a peasant in a Landscape, Angelis. £3.13.6

Sachtleven – 49 – Boors drinking. Stile of Brower £3.3.0 (3 Guin)


Attic Story.

Picture Gallery

  1. Marratt – 56 – A madona and child, highly finished. £13.13.0 (12 ½ Guins)

Claude – 61 – Three, An old woman’s head, a flower piece, and a print in colors. £5.5.0 (5 Guins)

Breughel – 63 – A pair of small landscapes. £2.2.0

Huens – 65 – Two, A boar baiting, and a flowing piece. £4.14.6 (4 ½ Guins)

Murch for not bidding. £2.2.0


Porters, Coach Hire &c.

26th May

Received a Draught for £66.4.0







9 May 1827.  Letter from William Marsh’s daughter, Mary Marsh (1799-1839) to their Solicitor George Delman.  The original of this letter is held in the archive of the Staffordshire Record Office (4229/1/2/2/5).  The letter is addressed to George Delman Esq of 25 Norfolk Street, Strand.  It reads as follows:



Wednesday Evening 9th May 1827

Dear Sir

My father being poorly tonight with a bad cold, has commissioned me to forward to you the enclosed letters the perusal of which will put you wholly au fait of the business.  We trust Messers . . . [Winstanley?] & Sons will (in compliance with the injunction contained within my Father’s letter to them this evening) furnish you, as speedily as possible, with the Documents & Papers necessary to be inspected, before we conclude our Purchase, for we are not a little anxious to be freed from a furnished lodging at 3 Guineas & a half a week! 

With our united Kind Regards.

Believe me dear Sir truly yours

Mary Marsh

Mama hopes you are proceeding in Mr Batty’s business, as Quarter day is fast approaching and he must have his 3 months notice for repairs. 




3 October 1840.  The following series of letters are all regarding the purchase of the lease of 11 York Gate, London.  William Marsh was at this time 85 years old.  Although he seems to be the person buying 11 York Gate, the actual purchaser is his daughter, Georgina Nelson Marsh (William had gone bankrupt many years earlier in 1824 with the collapse of the family banking firm of Marsh, Stacey & Graham).  Some of the following letters are also from William’s eldest son Arthur Cuthbert Marsh (Georgina’s half brother) who seems to have had some involvement in the purchase.

These letters are all in the archive of the Staffordshire Record Office (4229/1/3/1).


Saturday Morning 3rd October 1840

My Dear Sir,

You will I trust upon your getting to Lincolns Inn this Morning have found the Probate dear Georgina sent you of her late dear Sister’s Will! By, “her Reading” last night she thinks it appears plain that there is full power for her to proceed with her wishes about this House! – We were home so late that I confess I was not in a reading humour after our dinner at 9 o’clock, and consequently, I was taking my first Nap whilst she was reading and making up the parcel for you! – I hope she is correct in the view she has taken of her powers!

Mr. Hasting is the Son in Law of Major Fotheringham the Vendor, and appears a very respectable Young Man – He brought the Agreement with him, and after some cursory conversation, we told him we must refer the whole to you! – You will of course have read it attentively, and have probably taken the same view of some of the conditions as we have done! – In the first place after Sir Wm Colebrook’s occupation and which does not expire until the 2nd or 3rd of February; there is a fortnight (or more) required, and that for the purpose of an auction on the Premises!! This, is highly objectionable as nothing dirties and pulls a House about (nay even often injures it) so much as Public Sale! – and upon further consideration also appears quite premature to Value the usual Fixtures, until the state in which they may be in when Sir Wm Colebrook’s family may leave them! – and another consequence would be not only the loss of time in doing what is absolutely necessary to be done to the Premises but the further expense of a ready furnished House! – As for the Proposal of Sir George Colebrook becoming my Daughter’s tenant upon an arrangement

arrangement if the Purchase Money should be paid as soon as the Title has been approved. I do not see the way so clearly at present as to recommend my daughter to accede to it: I understand  Sir Wm is to pay £4.10 per Week for 17 Weeks ending the 2nd or 3rd of February which is £7.10 call it a third of a year my daughter would have advanced the £1500 at 5 per cent interest would be only £25 but it must be taken into consideration that she must be at the expense of a ready furnished house all the while, and most probably, the fortnight required after the 2nd of February would prove the whole of that month.  Nor can I possibly recommend my daughter to have the settling with a Party upon an Agreement, she knew nothing about, difference of opinion upon its meaning might arise with the Parties, however respectable and from the carelessness and indifference of servants, as to broken Windows and other minor injuries and entailing upon her trouble and vexation, she ought not to have to encounter, but the delay and that for Sale on the Premises, appears to me the most objectionable for my Daughter to agree to that probably  the most profitable mode of getting rid of the Furniture!  I may most likely be with you on Monday with my Daughter, if she can come to Town that day – till when and always I remain,

Dear Sir

Yours most truly


P.S. I found in the course of conversation that Mr.Hasting knew your Elder Brother.

2nd Should not the original lease be promptly seen in order to judge if any unusual Covenants?

2nd Policy of Insurance

George Delmar Ex..

Lincolns Innfields.




Blackheath Park, Wednesday

15th October 1840

Dear Sir,

I am sorry to say, that my Daughter has taken so severe a cold, as not to be able to leave her Chamber this morning or even her bed!  But as “Thoughts” will not be so confined, one has started forward, which she requests me to state to you, namely, “That as Major Fotheringham’s Lease from Mr Burton, no doubt binds him to the usual Covenant of painting the Outside of the House once in every three years, and the Inside once in every seven, if he has not so done, whether she is not entitled to some allowance on this score, when she takes possession next February?” – submitting this question to your consideration, I have only to add that I remain always.

Your sincere humble servant

William Marsh.



Thursday Morning 22nd October 1840

Dear Sir,

Your note arrived this morning, and my daughter requests me to thank you for the same. When Dr Clarke and we were first talking about this House he sent me over a Memo of what he thought was the Heads of our Agreement and at the moment I had been writing our ideas and had sent to him. You have the former and no doubt he has sent the latter to Mr.Hutchinsons. Should you not combine the two into a rough draft, in order to agree the same and draw up a complete Agreement accordingly?  Now for less legal proceedings! We have a particular friend now a Widow and who has some Valuable diamonds, which she no longer feels any inclination to either wear or keep. They have been valued at £1200, but if offered to a Jeweller for purchase they

they (I know so much of the Trade in this way) would not offer probably much above half!  What can Messers Delmar & Wynne have to do with this?!!  I will tell you – should they know, or hear amongst their legal friends of any Marriage going forward in high Rank or great Opulence, and where the Gentlemen is so much in love as to be willing and ready to make such a purchase they may be had at least 15 or 20 percent under a Jeweller’s price!  I understand the valuation I before alluded to was made by a Jeweller -  but worth, and purchase by him were quite distinct points!! – I could have told my friend this!

Always Dear Sir yours most truly,

William Marsh                             

Is my old neighbour Lord L- married! Ask my friend WD.

I believe they consist of a Neckless and Earings and Locket - large Stomacher Broach and a large ornament for the Head which may be used in their distinct parts;

If we did not really feel a warm and sincere … for the Party in question, you would not have had “your Ear bound” for these Ear Rings!

L: Wynne Esquire





Blackheath Park, 24 October 1840

Dear Sir,

My daughter and self agree with you, that under circumstances a formal stamped Agreement between her and Dr Clarke, for this House, may not be necessary; still I wish that you would send me the “Two Memorandums” “having this tendency” that were made by Dr Clarke and myself, one written by him and the other by me! - at the moment I had written mine the Dr sent me his.  Together they will explain about Fixtures etc etc, and I think it may be convenient that we should now agree them together.  Mr.Gilbert, at our Library and who is also an auctioneer is to settle what shall be deemed Fixtures. I believe both these papers are with our friend, Mr Delmar’s budget in the Concern!  If Mr Hutchinson has either or both, I conclude he will not object to giving them to you! - always

Dear Sir

Your sincere humble servant

William Marsh

Another “Memo” – although the above is not some of my best writing, still I am of opinion, that your’s might be improved by the sample!!




Blackheath Park, 29th October 1840

Dear Sir,

I have just received the enclosed letter. The writer is our Carpenter and accompanied by my daughter’s desire Mr Townsend of Greenwich, a regular sworn appraiser and who had before been employed by us! and who I find has not agreed with … … upon sundry articles the latter has put down for valuation!  In this case if neither will give way, I conclude if they are of consequence enough a third person must be referred to!! - of this we cannot judge till we see Mr Townsend. The first article named “The Iron Flower Stand in the garden cannot I think be deemed a fixture, but when the time of sale arrives we may then have it in our choice to take it at Valuation, or let it go in the Catalogue and take it’s chance – with respect to many of the other Articles Mr Townsend (I find) and the writer of the enclosed object to, may I think in a great measure be judged of, by referring to the original Lease from Mr Burton, and if there is a Schedule upon the same in which any of them are specified they certainly must then be considered as part of the freehold or Premises!- I am sorry the state of the Painting struck them both to be very bad, particularly the Dining Room! – The state of the Weather this morning prevented our coming to Town as we intended, and have brought the enclosed with us, but we hope it may be better tomorrow and in which case we at present intend paying you a Visit in the course of the morning! – I cannot omit saying that I never saw a House finished and offered for sale, that the Dressers in the Kitchen and many of the articles named in the enclosed were not finished and put up – They form great Eye-Traps, and no man understood such things, better, than my late esteemed friend Mr Burton! but then in this case I cannot doubt they would have been (and are) scheduled on his Lease!

Always yours most truly

William Marsh



Blackheath Park, 11th November 1840

Dear Sir,

Upon my return home yesterday evening, I found your letter of the day before. The Policy you will find (or it ought to be there) in the Tin Box we had from poor Mr Rowles’s, so recently!!  It is made at the British Fire Office but I believe there is the furniture of this House, besides other Property Insured in it!  I believe it is a Midsummer Policy, and the Premium was paid the 3rd July up to Midsummer next as you will see by the accompanying Receipt.  If Dr Clarke is not engaged I could wish he would continue the Policy in that Office and Mr Helps, the secretary, will easily make the necessary arrangements for so doing. I also send you the Receipt for my Tax including the Tithe (10/10 per annum) for the last year except the 2nd last quarter ending 5 October last as it only came in yesterday when we were from home. It is increased from the usual sum of £4.15.10 ½ to £5.5.9, owing to the late 10 per cent being now become due. The Tax Collector lives at Charlton, but we will send over and pay it, as he may not otherwise call for 10 days or a fortnight, and bring it when my Daughter calls on you to sign the Agreement.  You know you thought it not worth while to make out a full and formal Agreement in which we fully accorded – it was fully however understood between us that the Dr was to have for his Purchase Money all the fixtures in the House, and that Mr.Gilbert should determine the point as to what ought to be deemed “Fixtures”, being an Auctioneer and Appraiser and that Dr and Mrs Clarke would take at a valuation such articles of furniture as appear suitable to the House, and their convenience when we left it. The only thing stipulated for in the proposed Agreement I gave Dr Clark at the time was that he should take at Valuation Dr Arnold’s stove in the Hall, as there is no possible place for it where we are going. I am of course to conclude you will be as kindly attentive as to see that all Rates and Taxes are paid for No.11 York Gate up to Michalmas

(X called Rent Change)

Michaelmas but, and more particularly how that House now stands as to insurance - at whose risk is it now?  The Office at which I conclude there is an existing Policy, should be applied to and notice given of the changed premium:- and indeed a proportionate sum that my Daughter ought to pay for the remaining period of the year, as we do not know at what time of the year the Policy was made: - would Dr Clarke be safe if any accident happened to this House before Midsummer next, or could we … of the British after my Daughter had executed the Agreement, and account with the Doctor afterwards! – I have I am afraid owing to a day yesterday out of my usual course, and sundry interruptions, written a confused epistle to you, but if it was ten times worse, I know you would readily make it out! – and amend it accordingly! – always

Dear Sir

Your sincere humble servant

William Marsh

I have omitted to say that my son when he left us talked of making a longer stay than usual at Boulogne indeed, that unless something particularly occurred he should not come possibly much before Christmas, so as to return there with his son from Eton! – Will Dr Clark’s solicitor insist upon his signature promptly? – If so the Agreement must be sent over to him unless it will suit him to come himself.

His address is
“A.C. Marsh Esqr

Chateau de Tus, Capicure

Boulogne surmer”

And if necessary it would save time for you to write him and ask, if he is not coming over the best way to send the Agreement to him to Execute, I mean the Place in London and the name of the Steamer he goes by generally and is known to the Captain – plenty of English Witnesses at Boulogne!

I mean until he has paid His proportion and had the Transfer noted at the British?




Blackheath Park, 16 Nov 1840

Dear Sir,

I this morning received your letter of yesterday! -  in the first place my Daughter and self will be with you punctually at 2 o’clock on Friday  next. We do not know at what office Mr.Moreton insured this House before my Daughter bought it, or whether she had not imprudently run the risque contrary to the Covenant with MrCator.  All we can trace on the point is, an Item, in our friend Mr Delmar’s Bill dated the 7th of June 1827 as follows – “attending at the British Fire Office and effecting an Insurance on the House and Premises” now this was the period when we took possession, it is evident that there was not any arrangement necessary with Mr Moreton, on account of any subsisting Policy of his!  Ever since our Policy has been regularly, according to the Covenant with Mr Coles been kept up and therefore it does not occur to me what … for this enquiry! – enclosed is the receipt for the last 2 quarters assessed Taxes we could not send before, for the reasons stated in my former letter.  You do not say what you have done about my son’s signature! Our Policy you will find in the Tin Box you had from “Stratton Street”!!


Dear Sir

Yours Truly

Wm Marsh.



Blackheath Park, 18th November 1840

Dear Sir,

I am favoured with your note of yesterday, and in consequence of Mr Hutchinson’s repeated wish, to know where Miss Moulton had Insured these Premises, I was upon the point of writing a note and sending over to Greenwich to Mr.Parker of Thornton Row, who I recollect was her solicitor when my Daughter purchased this House, in the hope that he probably might be able to answer the question, when it struck me, I had seen a Fire Office Plate fixed upon the end of this House in a Dying Ground where I seldom go, and I sent my servant round to look at it.  He says “the figure is a sort of Bird, with the Motto Safety under it” – My Daughter has since been to look at it, and her report leaves me without doubt upon the point, namely, that it was “the Phoenix Office”. As she was the first Inhabitant and we the second, I think proves the case:  Whatever passed upon the subject of my late dear Daughter Mary’s share in this House must have been with my daughter Georgina and not with me, but I understand from her that it is her wish to arrange with her brother as … for her

her late dear Sister’s proportion of the Purchase Money from Dr Clarke! and that when her Brother again comes over from Boulogne they will settle this arrangement!  To return to Mr A’s  question? – as I repeat there have been no other inhabitants in this House, but Miss Moulton and ourselves, and assure the moment the Assignment was made to my Daughter made an Insurance at the British, namely, on the 7th June 1827, through our friend Mr.Delmar, the Plate from the Phoenix must have been that Lady’s Insurance.

Myself and daughter were very sorry to hear this morning by a letter from Canterbury, that our friend Mr Delmar had been so ill as to call for the aid of a Physician! - We thought he was at Brighton!  We hope he is again quite convalescent: - I am always

Dear Sir

Yours very sincerely


You have no doubt found our Policy in the Tin Box form poor Mr Rowles’s!- there is also a Will of Mrs Tresilian Mr.Marshes Sister in that Box – take care of it:-

L.Wynne Esqr



18 November 1840.  The following letter is post marked 19 November Boulogne
and is addressed as follows:

Messers Delmar & Wynne

46 Lincoln’s Innfield’s


The letter reads as follows:


Wednesday 18 November 1840

My dear Sir

Your letter of the 14th not having been put into the Post Office in time that day, did not reach me until last night.  I have seen nothing of the Conveyance and although I have been inquiring after it both at the office of the “General Steam Packet” office, and that of the “Commercial Company” in this town, I can gain no tidings of it.  I will execute it and return it as soon as possible after receiving it.  Meantime I think it right to let you know how matters stand. 

Believe me yours very truly.

AC Marsh.




21November 1840.  The following letter is addressed

Messrs Delmar and Wynne

46 Lincolns Inn Fields


It is post marked Boulogne, 22 November 1840.  It reads as follows:


Saturday Afternoon

21 November 1840

My dear Sir

The deed has just been delivered to me.  I have executed it and return it by the Harlequin Steam boat belonging to the General Steam Packet Company, 69 Lombard Street, which will start to weigh for London at 10 o’clock unless the gale now blowing should increase.  One of my Daughters (of age) is the Witness to my Signature.

Believe me yours very truly

AC Marsh



Blackheath Park , 5th February 1841

Dear Sir,

Yesterday was the day of sale of Major Fotheringham’s goods as No.11 York Gate – my daughter employed a person to bid for sundry lots, and has accordingly Purchased to the amount of £49.7.0!; but he does not state whether he advanced the money at the Hammer, or that he informed Mr McShane who they were for, and we had therefore concluded that he had done so and that there would be an Account to Balance, but by a letter just received from Mr McShane he does not  say one word about these Lots  but merely requests to know to whom he shall pay the proportion of Sir George Colebrooks Rent coming to my Daughter?  - Otherwise he must in his letter have stated the above purchase Money!. Our old Acquaintance Mr Featherstone of Paradise St, MaryleBone kindly undertook to employ a Person to bid for us, but he is also silent at who advanced the money for our Lots!  I have written to them both, requesting Mr McShane to pay you the proportion of my Daughters share of the Rent, for she has quite forgot the amount, and some time should it appear that the Lots are still owing for, and should it appear the Lots are still owing for to settle the same and should the Balance be against my daughter she will send you a draft for the difference, and at the same time include what you have kindly pay in settling the fire Insurance for York Gate, which she wishes to do! Should not Mr Featherstone have paid the £49.7.0 for the Lots we have requested him to call upon you for it, and whatever St.George’s Rent may fall short she will as I have said before promptly send you a draft for the amount!  Kind remembrances to Mr Delmar and I remain always yours

Dear Sir very sincerely.

William Marsh.

In one of your …

I cannot but conclude Mr Featherstone has paid for the lots. My Daughter now sends their then the Balance in acknowledgement.




9 February 1840.  Letter addressed to: George Delmar Esq, 4b Lincoln Innfields.

The Park, Blackheath

9 February 1841

My dear Mr.Delmar,

Myself and daughter thank you for your note of yesterday.   We had been expecting to hear about the Possession of the House and have now no doubt “all is right” owing to Mr.Featherstone’s kind attentions.

We observe that that we owe you £2.19.0, Balance between my Daughter’s Purchase and the proportion of Rent coming to her.  We also believe there is some trifle Mr Wynne has kindly paid on account of Insurance.  Georgina will take an early opportunity of calling and settling both!  Mr McShane has forgot that Mr.Featherstone pointed out to him a trifling mistake in Lot 52, I believe which should have made his Claim £49.6.0 only instead of £49.7.0.  We most sincerely regret Mr Wynne’s illness, but we hope it is only of a temporary nature, a severe cold which is hardly to be avoided even by those who like myself keep in a warm House!  Still I have not entirely escaped!  You wrote me at Christmas to Hertford about an application you had had relative to the Will of my old friend Mr James Piery.  Have you heard any thing

thing further on that subject?  I have found letters … since I returned home, which I think show enough to prove that except a dividend that has not been taken up he was more probably in debt to the House beyond his assets.  At all events he is not in the list of the Creditors of the House, which he would have been had he had any Balance on the Accounts.

I see we proved the Will 14 January 1812 P.Stamp under £300!  I have therefore little doubt the Dividend which was then just payable was forgot – but I do not imagine his Stock was £300!- because of course for the P.Stamp we see … upon all the valuation his property!  His son after the “Bank” went to America I see I must have written to him fully after his Father’s death to Norfolk in Virginia from whence I find a subsequent letter from him.  He had a large family by his 1st wife for I think he married a 2nd time and had a further family  - I really have not been able this Matter, to go to the Bank about it, for as no doubt it would now take a whole morning to get through it.  Post waits.  Believe me  yours truly

William Marsh

Vile ink, I can get none good here.


End of letters of William Marsh