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Darwin Correspondence Project

To William Bernhard Tegetmeier   5 February [1869]1

Down. | Bromley. | Kent. S.E.

Feb 5

My dear Sir

Have you quite thrown me overboard as too troublesome? I have not heard from you for an age.— I wrote some two months ago asking you to send as soon as you could any extracts & facts, which you told me you had collected, about number of sexes— Also any account of even one or two breeds of the fowl,—as colour of plumage of hen & chickens of Pile Game or Golden Hamburghs.— Will you not aid me so far?—2 I hope that are well & that all goes well with you.—3

My regular work has been interrupted for 6 weeks & more by preparing a new Edit. of the “Origin,” which is wearisome work; but I shall now finish in 2 or 3 days.4

Yours sincerely | Ch. Darwin


The year is established by CD’s reference to finishing work on a new edition of Origin (see n. 4, below).
CD had asked for information on the proportion of sexes in domestic animals in a letter published in the Field, 22 February 1868 (see Correspondence vol. 16, letter to W. B. Tegetmeier, 11 February [1868] and n. 2). Tegetmeier had promised to tabulate results and forward them (ibid., letter from W. B. Tegetmeier, 9 March 1868). In his letter of 8 September [1868] (ibid.), CD had asked Tegetmeier to forward whatever replies he had received to date, and also asked for information on the plumage of a few breeds of fowl, mentioning the pile game breed as an example. The last extant letter from Tegetmeier is that of 25 May 1868 (ibid.).
Tegetmeier had evidently mentioned that his health had been poor in September 1868 (see Correspondence vol. 16, letter to W. B. Tegetmeier, 8 September [1868]).
CD finished corrections for the fifth edition of Origin on 10 February 1869 (see ‘Journal’ (Correspondence vol. 17, Appendix II)).


Repeats request for information on colours of plumage of poultry breeds and asks for WBT’s facts on proportions of sexes.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
William Bernhard Tegetmeier
Sent from
Source of text
Archives of the New York Botanical Garden (Charles Finney Cox collection)
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 6600,” accessed on 18 July 2019,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 17