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Document number: 6682
Date: 24 Sep 1852
Recipient: TALBOT William Henry Fox
Author: MALONE Thomas Augustine
Collection: British Library, London, Manuscripts - Fox Talbot Collection
Collection number historic: Acc no 20889 (envelope only)
Last updated: 11th October 2014

2 Grenville Place
24th Septr 1852

To H F Talbot Esqr


I feel it due to your past kindness that I should give some account of myself, and my pursuits and prospects, especially with regard to Photography. And I am the more naturally inclined to do so since at the same time it will give me an opportunity of asking a favour at your hands that will be of great service to me. – Since I left London I have been more than ever out of health, indeed I find some doubt was intertained of my recovering, but I am now very much better: so much so that Dr Bence Jones thinks me fit to return to active life But this return at first seemed to be a difficult point for I still require care and am advised not to make photography my chief occupation – this winter. Having suffered from “disturbed vision” exposure to any strong light will be very undesirable and the threatened affection of the lungs requires that I should remain much within doors avoiding all sudden changes in bad weather. It has therefore been decided that I shall enter the Royal College of Chemistry, as a daily student Dr Bence Jones having kindly gained me access there. I have only the expense of subsistence to provide for. This I hope to do partly by the aid of a friend and partly by small labours at translation & compilation from foreign journals for one or two English papers to which I have some access. – These labours to be carried on at the intervals allowed by the “Laboratory hours” It is true I cannot hope to do very much but every little will aid me. And now it is that after fully considering everything I cannot make up my mind to altogether relinquish photography – not even for this winter. I think very small & occasional tasks may be done and be of in every way of use to me. My Chemical studies would help me in carrying out several projects I have commenced or planned and I think ultimately Photography & Chemistry judiciously combined will give me occupation best suited to my health & to success. I have thought that if you Sir would entrust me with any special photographic work not instantly wanted it would be doing me a service, and the careful manipulation which I should certainly give it might be pleasing & satisfactory to you I make but a vague proposition still I think it may in some way or other meet with your approbation. If you are pleased to gratify me by encouraging me in it, it would be of immediate advantage to me if I could pledge my future labours to as a means of procuring one or two cameras and other necessary apparatus and materials. I have thought presuming on your past kindness that you might have confidence enough in me to advance me a sum of twenty or thirty pounds – to that end. – to be balanced by negatives positives or the fixing of pictures by a method (the details of which I shall be pleased to lay before you) not now in use. –

If I have not presumed too far I would ask that you would kindly excuse my request on the plea of any natural anxiety to occupy successfully all my time and as much of that as is prudent or possiblein Photography. – And in conclusion I would further ask the additional favour that if convenient to you I might be enabled within a few days to commence my plans by at once obtaining the apparatus I need.

Again thanking you for all your kindnesses

I have the honour to be Sir your obliged humble Servt
T A Malone.

To H F Talbot Esqr

Sept 24 . 1852

I had nearly forgotten for to apologise for troubling you to read so long a note

yours Sir &c

H.F. Talbot Esqr.
Lacock Abbey

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