Josephine Butler to Stanley Butler

Scope and Content

Photocopy of journal letter. Written from 'our quiet life at Le Cannet', near Cannes. Just called to say goodbye to the Thomassons who were going to Lausanne to leave their daughter with a Swiss family. On Monday warm enough for the Canon to go out to do some sketching. On her return was called on by Mrs Gladstone with a special message from Mr Gladstone for news of the Canon's health. She reported that the Prince of Wales had been sitting talking to him all the morning. The 19th they planned to go to the station and see off the Gladstones departing for home and to take with them several foreigners in the hotel anxious to meet them, but the hotel clock was slow and the scheme fell through. Other guests at the hotel mentioned were Lady Maria Brodie, sister to Lord Radstock, and aunt to Lady Laura ridding (wife of the Bp of Southwell); Sir Mark and Lady Collett (he is the Governor of the Bank of England), a most loveable old couple. Lady Collett and Lady Brodie both came to ask her about the Federation work. Also Mr & Mrs Hall of Cambridge; he was interested in the introduction of fruit tree planting in Ireland, but they disagreed over politics. They always read together in the morning and are now reading Henri Laserre's French translation of the Gospels, which they find very beautiful. It was however put on the 'Index Expurgatorius' and it is now difficult to get a copy. Father had astonished her one Sunday morning by reading aloud to her the 1st chapter of Genesis, and then rendering it back into Hebrew, aloud, without any Hebrew Bible there. Friday the 22nd they went out for a walk and were overtaken by the Collets in a carriage who took them a lovely drive up into the hills, Saturday the 23rd it snowed heavily all day but it lay only for one day.

Administrative / Biographical History

'The Parnell Commission': The Government set up a special commission of these Judges to investigate the whole of the Times charges against Parnell. These charges were contained in a series of letters published by the Times (beginning 1887) in facsimile, alleged to be written by Parnell, leader of the Irish Party in Parliament. The Commission met in Sep 1888 but it was not till Feb 1889 that Pigott [the disreputable Irish journalist who forged the letters with his own hand] entered the witness box. He speedily broke down under examination, absconded abroad, posted a full confession to The Times and then blew his brains out. (Ensor. England 1870-1914 p.181-183). 'Uncle Spencer' (Spencer Perceval Butler) (1828-1915) younger brother of Rev George (JB's husband) held many legal appointments. Bismarck and his relations with Alsace and his conduct to the late Emperor and our Princess. William I Ist Emperor of Germany proclaimed after the Franco-Prussian war of 1871 died in 1888. He was succeeded by his son Frederick married to queen Victoria's daughter, Victoria. He was a sick man when he came to the throne in Mar 1888 and died 15 Jun 1888. Biog: Mr & Mrs Thomasson; Mrs Gladstone; WE Gladstone; JA Balfour; Charles Steward Parnell; Sir Mark and Lady Collett; Lady Brodie; Henri Laserre; Lord Radstock; Lady Laura Ridding; Uncle Spencer; Spencer Perceval Butler (1828-1915); Mr Careur; Mr & Mrs Hall of Cambridgeshire; Michael Davitt; Mrs Battersby and Dr Battersby.