LADY FRANCES, COUNTESS WALDEGRAVE. 1821-1879, and CHICHESTER SAMUEL FORTESCUE (LATER LORD CARLINGFORD). 1823-1898. An archive of approximately 8,000 Autograph Letters Signed and Notes Signed, approximately 3,500 to the Countess Waldegrave, and approximately 4,500 to Lord Carlingford, various sizes, various places, 1839-1898,

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Lot 8
LADY FRANCES, COUNTESS WALDEGRAVE. 1821-1879, and CHICHESTER SAMUEL FORTESCUE (LATER LORD CARLINGFORD). 1823-1898.
An archive of approximately 8,000 Autograph Letters Signed and Notes Signed, approximately 3,500 to the Countess Waldegrave, and approximately 4,500 to Lord Carlingford, various sizes, various places, 1839-1898,

Sold for US$ 56,250 inc. premium

Fine Literature

11 Apr 2016, 10:00 EDT

New York

LADY FRANCES, COUNTESS WALDEGRAVE. 1821-1879, and CHICHESTER SAMUEL FORTESCUE (LATER LORD CARLINGFORD). 1823-1898.
An archive of approximately 8,000 Autograph Letters Signed and Notes Signed, approximately 3,500 to the Countess Waldegrave, and approximately 4,500 to Lord Carlingford, various sizes, various places, 1839-1898, being the daily received correspondence of their personal and political lives, of invitations accepted or rejected, and of Parliamentary matters, from correspondents in England, Ireland, or abroad in Paris and Italy, most without envelopes, some bound up in bundles by correspondent, the archive contained in 2 large trunks and a series of files.

A DECADES LONG ARCHIVE OF CORRESPONDENCE OF A HUSBAND AND WIFE WHO SERVED AS INSPIRATION FOR TROLLOPE: Waldegrave and Fortescue were the inspiration for Anthony Trollope's characters Madame Max Goesler and Phineas Finn in the Palliser novels.

An extraordinary collection, the essence being the correspondence to Lady Waldegrave. Frances née Braham was one of six daughters of the famous tenor singer, John Braham, married at 18 to John Waldegrave, who died within the year; at 20 she married his brother George Waldegrave. Unfortunately after six years of marriage he also died, leaving everything to his young wife: three houses and accompanying estates including the estate at Strawberry Hill, Middlesex, the former home of Horace Walpole. In 1847 she married George Granville Vernon Harcourt, aged 61, an MP and son of the Archbishop of York. It was during this period that Countess Waldegrave began cultivating her political connections. But after 14 years Harcourt died, and she inherited a townhouse and Nuneham in Gloucestershire. Chichester Fortescue, a young politician from Ireland had always been in her circle, and was around her age, and from the time of her marriage to Fortescue in 1863, she worked on his behalf, forging his career through government. She moved her weekends and political parties from Nuneham to the newly restored Strawberry Hill, complete with a new guest wing, a short carriage ride from Richmond Surrey, where she became the political hostess for the Liberal party in Britain, creating intrigue and advancement, with her political guile and exquisite manners and taste. Her correspondence includes letters from a coterie of female friends both in England and abroad with whom she communicated on a very regular basis; her male political group of friends who appear to treat her as one of their own; and the many replies to invitations down to Strawberry Hill for weekends and dinners. Lady Waldegrave was described as "A handsome woman with the virtues of a honest man, who unites in her own person, the best qualities of both sexes." Reynolds in his article in the DNB remarked that her "social influences had to be taken into account as a factor promoting the cohesion of the Liberal party," and this all at the height of the power of the British Empire under Queen Victoria.

Chichester Fortescue had a distinguished political career, rising through the Treasury, under Secretary of State for the Colonies, Privy Council, President of the Board of Trade, Lord Privy Seal under Gladstone, and finally Lord President of the Council. His wife died tragically at 58.

Many of the approximately 500 correspondents whose letters are part of this archive were often corresponding independently to both husband and wife. The archive includes a group of letters to each other, as well as letters from GLADSTONE and PALMERSTON, long correspondences from the DUC and DUCHESSE D'AUMALE, DUKE OF NEWCASTLE, SIR WILLIAM HENRY GREGORY, RALPH OSBORNE, JANE CHURCHILL, CHARLES VILLIERS, LORDS GREY, CLARENDON, DUFFERIN, AMPHILL, LANDSDOWNE, BRISTOL, and CHELSEA, BISHOP WILBERFORCE, LADY GREY, MINTO, ABINGDON, SIR EDWIN ARNOLD, CORNELIA WADSWORTH ADAIR, LADY BLANCHE AIRLIE, MASSIMO D'AZEGLIO, LADY ASBURTON, LADY ELIZABETH SACKVILLE-WEST, MARY BULTEEL, FREDERICK "POODLE" BYNG, GEORGE BYNG, J.D. COOK, HENRY OCTAVIOUS COXE, JOHN THADEUS DELANE, HENRY RIVERSDALE GRENFELL, HENRY GREVILLE, SIR WILLIAM VERNON HARCOURT, ABRAHAM HAYWARD, SIR HENRY JAMES, HARCOURT JOHNSTONE, EDWARD LEAR, RICHARD MONCKTON MILNES, EFFIE GRAY MILLAIS, SIR WILLIAM AND LADY MOLESWORTH, LOUIS PHILLIPE D'ORLEANS, COMPTE DE PARIS, E.H. PIGGOT, SIR EDWARD STRACHEY, LADY SUSAN VANE-TEMPEST, SIR GEORGE FERGUSON BOWEN, and many, many others. A true slice of Victorian political Society at the height of Queen Victoria's reign.
Contacts
LADY FRANCES, COUNTESS WALDEGRAVE. 1821-1879, and CHICHESTER SAMUEL FORTESCUE (LATER LORD CARLINGFORD). 1823-1898. An archive of approximately 8,000 Autograph Letters Signed and Notes Signed, approximately 3,500 to the Countess Waldegrave, and approximately 4,500 to Lord Carlingford, various sizes, various places, 1839-1898,
LADY FRANCES, COUNTESS WALDEGRAVE. 1821-1879, and CHICHESTER SAMUEL FORTESCUE (LATER LORD CARLINGFORD). 1823-1898. An archive of approximately 8,000 Autograph Letters Signed and Notes Signed, approximately 3,500 to the Countess Waldegrave, and approximately 4,500 to Lord Carlingford, various sizes, various places, 1839-1898,
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