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Darwin Correspondence Project

To W. E. Darwin   4 May [1881]


May 4th

My dear William.—

Whenever your head feels comfortable will you read the enclosed documents 1, 2 & 3; but there is no hurry—1 It is a horrid bore that the U. States Funded Loan, (which I took at your suggestion) are likely to be redeemed.— You will see that I have been compelled to sell 1000$. I told the manager of the U. Bank, I wd consider what to do with the remainder of 14,000$. Can you advise me? Investments seem all so bad that I am inclined to think that I had better leave the 14,000$ invested in the U. States Government bonds & take whatever interest it may offer.—2 What do you think? I hope that you & Sara3 are fairly well.—

Your affect Father | C. Darwin

P.S I was glad to get your Malvern letter about worms—4 I suspect that worms cannot live where roots come near to surface, as they cannot burrow deep enough, when the weather is very dry or very cold.—


The enclosures have not been found. William had recently had a recurrence of symptoms related to a fall from his horse (see letter to W. E. Darwin, [13 March 1881] and n. 4).
CD bought $15,000 worth of shares in the United States Funded Loan in 1876; he recorded the sale of $1000 in shares and the receipt of £204 10s. on 23 April 1881 in his Investment book (Down House MS), p. 158. CD’s bank was the Union Bank of London, Charing Cross branch; the manager was Thomas Druitt.
Sara Darwin was William’s wife.


Discusses his investments.

P.S. on earthworms.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
William Erasmus Darwin
Sent from
MY 4 81
Source of text
DAR 210.6: 179
Physical description
ALS 2pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 13144,” accessed on 18 September 2023,