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Document number: 3876
Date: 10 May 1839
Recipient: BABBAGE Charles
Author: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Collection: British Library, London - Dept of Manuscripts
Collection number: Add MS 37191 f159
Last updated: 6th December 2015

Lacock Abbey, Chippenham
May 10. 1839

Dear Babbage

Thinking you would like to have some of my photogenic drawings I have sent a packet of them directed to you to No 31 Sackville St.<1> Please to send for them - Among them is one view of the tower of Lacock Abbey self-executed with the Camera Obscura,<2> which branch of the art I understand several persons have found very difficult, though it really is not.

Believe me to remain Yours very truly
H. Fox Talbot

C. Babbage Esq
1 Dorset St
Manchester Square


1. 31 Sackville Street, London residence of the Feildings, often used as a London base by WHFT.

2. This image [ Schaaf 3783], 'Lacock Abbey self-represented in the Camera Obscura', signed on verso 'H.F. Talbot photogr. May 1839', was preserved in a Charles Babbage scrapbook and sold by a descendent at Sotheby's auction 1 July 1977, lot 93; it is now in the Getty Museum (84.XM.260.5). Neither of the other two prints are inscribed. One is in the National Media Museum Bradford, 1937-1503 and the other is reproduced in Larry J. Schaaf, Sun Pictures III: The Harold White Collection (New York: Hans P. Kraus, Jr., Inc., 1987) p. 27.

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