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Document number: 4741
Date: 28 Feb 1843
Recipient: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Author: HARRIS William Snow
Collection: British Library, London, Manuscripts - Fox Talbot Collection
Collection number historic: LA43-31
Last updated: 9th December 2010

28. Febr 1843

My dear Sir

What you say relative to the use of your Calotype Patent, <1> is perfectly reasonable & just, and I cannot but agree in every particular with you – My only reason for troubling you further on the Subject is, that I am most anxious to see it your process carried out in some great public record & to explain to you further the nature of the work to which I have alluded

My friend Sir Henry De La Beche, <2> I should tell you is one of those rare instances in which great Talent is combined with great liberality & Integrity of mind – and I may venture to assure you that in his application through me relative to your patent he does not in any degree contemplate the depriving you of any proper advantage to be derived to you from it – His object on the contrary is to bring it in a prominent way before the world generally – In proposing to use your process for the great work In view, he will (I may say to you confidentially) have some few difficulties to contend with, & not a few either because he will be opposed by engravers and artists &c – Now the work they have in hand is a work upon Organic remains, connected with the Ordnance Geological Survey of Great Britain, & is a Government Concern – This work is mainly under Sir Henry De La Beches direction as director of the Geological Survey and he thinks in carrying this out – So capital a process as yours should have consideration – To employ it in such a work would be to send it at once through Europe & the civilized world – I should wish therefore to put him in correspondence with you on the subject and see what terms he and you can arrange together so as to obtain a result honorable to the Country without being detrimental to your Interest – Permit me then to make my friend Sir Hy De La Beche a correspondent on the question who will explain his views better than I can – If you have no objection therefore & will be so good as to signify as much to me in a few lines – I am sure Sir Henry will be glad to write to you

I hope my dear Sir you will excuse my having troubled you on this matter

& will believe me to be most faithfully & truly yours
W Snow Harris

I am working away as usual & I hope with success

H. F. Talbot Esqre
FRS &c &c


1. WHFT took a patent for the Calotype titled ‘Photographic Pictures’, U.K. number 8,842, 8 February 1841.

2. Sir Henry Thomas de la Beche (1796–1855), geologist and photographer. [See Doc. No: 04737].

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