Josephine Butler to Stanley Butler

Scope and Content

Photocopy of letter. Written from La Gordanne.

She refers to the Fashoda incident which brought England and France to the brink of war [Finally settled 15 Feb 1899]. She said that Uncle Tell [her sister Hatty's husband] 'has read us the whole correspondence between Lord Salisbury and the French Minister of War'. Also 'There is quite a newspaper war in Paris over it. All the Dreyfusites are for peace with England. How strangely all this is circled round that desolate prisoner in the Devil's Island. She is afraid the war party may prevail from a mad desire to cover their own crimes at home by plunging into war abroad.

Administrative / Biographical History

'There is quite a newspaper war in Paris over it' This was the 'Fashoda incident' which nearly led to war between France and England 1898/99. Following on the occupation of Khartoum, and Omdurman 2 Sep 1898 came the news that a Frenchman, Captain Marand with 6 French officers commanding a small detachment of Senegalese had occupied a post up the White Nile at Fashoda. A protest was made by Kitchener and the matter transferred to the foreign offices and for some months Great Britain and France stood on the brink of war. Finally on 15 Feb 1899 Delcasse (Minister for Foreign Affairs) gave way and a demarcation line was agreed upon which established Great Britain in the Nile Valley

Biog: Lord Salisbury, General Marand (Minister of War), Yves Guyot