skip to content

Darwin Correspondence Project

To W. M. Hacon   11 September 1881

Sept 11— 1881—

My dear Sir

Owing to my accession of property, from my late brother, I shd. be much obliged if you wd make me a new will.—1 Perhaps you have copies of my present will & codicils; if not & you will inform me by telegraph or letter I will immediately send you either the attested or duplicate copies. I am very anxious that there shd be no delay in my new will being made & signed.— I wish all the old provisions to stand; with the following exception, namely that all my property be divided amongst my children in the proportion of 12 to my sons & 7 to my daughters. For instance if my property were to return only 74 thousand pound, each of my 5 sons wd receive 12,000£ & each of my 2 daughters 7000£. As all my children are now above 21, the clause about minors, I suppose, is superfluous— Since my will was made, stock to be estimated at 5000£ has been settled on the wife of my son Horace; & there is an additional 5000£ settled on her of which I pay interest, but no property was transferred into her Trustees hands..2 The codicil about the pictures &c & books to stand.—3

Had I better sign my new will in duplicate & deposit the 2 copies in different places, or is this a superfluous caution?

I also wish to leave two legacies, each of 1000£ (free of Duty) to Sir J. D. Hooker & Professor H. T. Huxley,4 “as a slight memorial of my life-long affection & respect for them.’

I shd be much obliged if you would send the new will by Post as soon as you, so that I may read it over, & then I will request you to send a Clerk who together with my Butler5 might serve as witnesses; for I have no [other], whom I should like to ask


Erasmus Alvey Darwin had died on 26 August 1881; he had bequeathed half his personal estate and all his real property to CD (see letter from G. H. Darwin, 28 August 1881).
For the details of the marriage settlement between Horace Darwin and Ida Farrer, see Correspondence vol. 27, letter from W. M. Hacon, 7 November 1879.
For the codicil to CD’s will, see the letter from W. E. Darwin, 6 January 1881 and n. 12.
CD inadvertently transposed Thomas Henry Huxley’s initials.


Wishes to draw up a new will; outlines the changes to be made in the provisions.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
William Mackmurdo Hacon
Sent from
Source of text
DAR 202: 61
Physical description
ADraft 2pp

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 13330,” accessed on 28 May 2024,