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Document number: 6300
Date: 02 Feb 1850
Recipient: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Author: MALONE Thomas Augustine
Collection: British Library, London, Manuscripts - Fox Talbot Collection
Collection number historic: LA50-9
Last updated: 29th September 2012

122 Regent St <1>
Feby 2. 1850

To H F Talbot Esqr

Sir

Mr Harper <2> writes to me as follows.

"I sent your note which you were kind enough to forward me to Mr Bingham <3> & have now received his reply. If we rightly understand Mr Talbots meaning he is willing to grant both to Mr Bingham myself & Mr Colls a license to use the Talbotype <4> process in all respects (except for portraits) on prepayments being always made by each of us in advance of £50 but under such restrictions as to minutię as will render Mr Talbot secure & enable him to give any other licenses he may please to any other parties as my impression is that all that is required on both sides is reasonable & fair I shall be happy to do my utmost to bring about a satisfactory arrangement between all parties & if you will do me the favour to inform me when Mr Talbot will be next in London I will endeavour to meet him either there or elsewhere in order to bring the matter to a definite conclusion The favour of your reply to this will oblige informing me whether my impressions are correct as I will in that case prepare a license in legal form in case Mr Talbot is not possessed of one that he may submit it if he thinks proper to his legal adviser for approval"

yours &c
E Harper

To T.A.M

The result of our Porcelain experiment is on the whole satisfactory I have discovered some difficulties - easily remedied on "grinding down" a slab I found it full of cavities arising probably from air enveloped by the clay during the kneading process. - We have discovered a mixture that turns white & translucent with less heat than is required for the ordinary biscuit china. This is important for the coated glass as we failed in using the "biscuit body" for that purpose. - I find the Mr Cocker uncertain as to the times of firing his kiln. He promises & then disappoints I must not blame him for this He waits until he has sufficient work to fill up his "seggars"

I do not think it advisable to have the kiln to ourselves until we get rid of the air bubbles I have spoken of

With the exception of the latter defect I have reason to be pleased with the prospect before us.

I find a greater degree of Transparency combined with porosity than I expected The first slabs were cast in an open mould they curled up towards the surface which had touched the mould To prevent this the water must be absorbed from both surfaces at the same time by a double mould I wish I could fire specimens at home I must try using mixtures that require but little heat. I shall then get on faster than at present.

Your obedt Servt
T. A. Malone.


Notes:

1. 122 Regent Street, London: base of Nicolaas Hennemans' Talbotype or Sun Picture Rooms, later the firm of Henneman & Malone, photographers to the Queen.

2. Edward Harper. [See Doc. No: 06290].

3. Robert Jefferson Bingham (1825-1870), English born author and photographer, mostly active in France, who was the premier reproduction photographer of his day.

4. Richard Colls, photographer, London, who sought a license to practise the Calotype (Talbotype) process commercially. Colls applied on behalf of himself, his brother Lebbeus, and Robert Jefferson Bingham (1825-1870), English born author and photographer, mostly active in France, who was the premier reproduction photographer of his day. The negotiations fell through and in January 1852, Talbot obtained an injunction against Richard Colls to prevent him from making and selling photographs on paper. See Rupert Derek Wood, "J.B. Reade, F.R.S., and the Early History of Photography; Part II. Gallic Acid and Talbot's Calotype Patent," Annals of Science, v. 27 no. 1, March 1971, pp. 52-53 and passim.

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