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Darwin Correspondence Project

From O. A. Ainslie to Francis Darwin   28 November [1880]1

48—Lincolns Inn | Fields. W.C.

Advent Sun⁠⟨⁠day⁠⟩⁠ | No⁠⟨⁠v⁠⟩⁠r—28 ⁠⟨⁠1880⁠⟩⁠

My dear Sir—

As I shall proba⁠⟨⁠bl⁠⟩⁠y be very busy tomorrow, & Tuesday, & was very busy yesterday, I infringe on my general rule, in replying to your note on this day— I beg to thank you & your Father for it—2 The price of ⁠⟨⁠the⁠⟩⁠ property in question was, what I underst⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ was given for it, so I am much obliged for a confirmation of ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠e report—my Father & I— received— I am not sure, w⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ the “owner”, you re⁠⟨⁠    ⁠⟩⁠ is still ali⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠— w⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ & have an i⁠⟨⁠mp⁠⟩⁠ression, ⁠⟨⁠that⁠⟩⁠ he is not—without referring to some paper⁠⟨⁠s I⁠⟩⁠ have, I think, if I remem⁠⟨⁠ber⁠⟩⁠ rightly, the name was —Haswell3 & not Haslam—but as one cannot be too particular, of ⁠⟨⁠wha⁠⟩⁠t one writes or says ⁠⟨⁠    ⁠⟩⁠ anyone—especially in ⁠⟨⁠the⁠⟩⁠ event of future litiga⁠⟨⁠tio⁠⟩⁠n—which as I have ⁠⟨⁠14 line⁠⟩⁠ expressed, I have ⁠⟨⁠14 line⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠t or possible ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ll ⁠⟨⁠      ⁠⟩⁠ of— I did not trouble your honoured Father with this correction— For ⁠⟨⁠the⁠⟩⁠ same reason I called Mr H—the first ⁠⟨⁠  ⁠⟩⁠ee—and you—rightly cal⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ owner—if he w⁠⟨⁠as un⁠⟩⁠der all the circumstan⁠⟨⁠ce⁠⟩⁠s of the case real (or rightful) owner— You imply very properly he had a legal ti⁠⟨⁠t⁠⟩⁠le to convey, & that possession, which is said to be nine tenths, parts or points of the Law— But I have wished to avoid, as far as I can, any reference to disputed title— Miss W⁠⟨⁠edgwo⁠⟩⁠od’s title was no dou⁠⟨⁠bt⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠abso⁠⟩⁠lutely bonâ f⁠⟨⁠ide as far⁠⟩⁠ as she was concerned—4   it is merely a very complicate⁠⟨⁠d⁠⟩⁠ question of prescription, w⁠⟨⁠he⁠⟩⁠ther I, as Heir at L⁠⟨⁠a⁠⟩⁠w of ⁠⟨⁠my F⁠⟩⁠ather, could do any th⁠⟨⁠ing to⁠⟩⁠ obtain a D⁠⟨⁠ecr⁠⟩⁠ee— ⁠⟨⁠    ⁠⟩⁠ the Conveyance to H as wel⁠⟨⁠l⁠⟩⁠ perhaps without any fault on his part,) was invalid. My Father always considered his estate suffered £500—by the sale besides, or including, the ⁠⟨⁠      ⁠⟩⁠s of the property itself—& supposing Mr H—spent £1500 on the property, which I think far above the real estimate & gave £1500 for it, which ⁠⟨⁠I⁠⟩⁠ think, is also above the mark. ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ [earned] £1500 by the ⁠⟨⁠transact⁠⟩⁠ion— If these figure⁠⟨⁠s⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠1 or 2 words⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠t, to my mind, i⁠⟨⁠s⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠2 or 3 words⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠nes—

With many | ⁠⟨⁠ki⁠⟩⁠nd regards— ⁠⟨⁠      ⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠in Dear Sir ⁠⟨⁠      ⁠⟩⁠ ⁠⟨⁠   ⁠⟩⁠ly Oliver A. Ainslie

Francis D⁠⟨⁠arwin⁠⟩⁠

⁠⟨⁠PS⁠⟩⁠— I omitted to tell Dr Darwin th⁠⟨⁠a⁠⟩⁠t my Father, when he settled with those responsible for the sale, protested ag⁠⟨⁠ains⁠⟩⁠t it—


The year is established by the relationship between this letter and the letter from O. A. Ainslie, 23 November 1880.
The note from Francis to Ainslie has not been found. Ainslie was inquiring about the sale of Tromer Lodge (see letter from O. A. Ainslie, 23 November 1880 and n. 2, and letter from O. A. Ainslie, 2[5] November 188[0]).
Robert Ainslie had sold Tromer Lodge to Robert Haswell in 1862.
Elizabeth Wedgwood had acquired Tromer Lodge in 1868; on the matter of the title, see letter from O. A. Ainslie, 23 November 1880, n. 3.


Thanks for information about the property in question [Tromer Lodge, see 12842]. His father, Robert Ainslie, had protested a settlement made in an earlier transaction.

Letter details

Letter no.
Oliver Alexander Ainslie
Francis Darwin
Sent from
London, Lincoln’s Inn Fields, 48
Source of text
DAR 159: 11c
Physical description
inc damaged

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 12872A,” accessed on 31 May 2023,