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Darwin Correspondence Project

CD memorandum   14 February 1863

– Feb 14th.— 1863

I have agreed to consider this Bond of Prof. Ansted dated April 19th 1855 cancelled;1 Prof Ansted informing me that when the new Company for the Patent Stone is formed, he will endeavour to dispose of some of his shares & pay me what he can.2

Charles Darwin


David Thomas Ansted was formerly professor of geology at King’s College, London (DNB). Ansted was co-owner, with Frederick Ransome, of the Patent Siliceous Stone Company, founded in 1848. CD purchased shares and provided several loans for the company, which had a troubled history, having to be reorganised and relaunched several times. The bond to which CD refers was returned to Ansted (see letter from D. T. Ansted, 23 April 1863). According to CD’s Investment book (Down House MS), CD lent Ransome £250 in November 1854 and this loan was transferred to Ansted in April 1855. See also n. 2, below.
The arrangements for cancelling the bond were not finally settled until April (see the letter to D. T. Ansted, 15 April 1863, and the letters from D. T. Ansted, 13 April 1863, 17 April 1863, and 23 April 1863). In CD’s Investment book (Down House MS), an entry concerning Ansted and the Patent Siliceous Stone Company is dated May 1863, and reiterates the settlement recorded in this document: ‘I have cancelled Ansted Bond on understanding that if he can ever sell the shares, he will repay me.’ Ransome’s new company, the Patent Concrete Stone Company, went into production at new premises in East Greenwich in 1867 (Engineering, 28 June 1867, pp. 671–2).


DNB: Dictionary of national biography. Edited by Leslie Stephen and Sidney Lee. 63 vols. and 2 supplements (6 vols.). London: Smith, Elder & Co. 1885–1912. Dictionary of national biography 1912–90. Edited by H. W. C. Davis et al. 9 vols. London: Oxford University Press. 1927–96.


Agreement to cancel the bond of D. T. Ansted, dated 19 April 1855. Prof. Ansted is arranging to pay CD what he can.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
David Thomas Ansted
Source of text
DAR 210.10: 24
Physical description
Draft agreement 1p

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 3985A,” accessed on 8 August 2020,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 11