(Major the Hon. Charles, 1826-1907, 2nd son of John, 1798-1867, from 1841 2nd Baron Wrottesley, P.R.S.)
Pair of long Autograph Letters Signed to his Mother,
(Sophia Elizabeth, née Giffard, Lady Wrottesley, married 1821, died 1880), during the Crimean War, in the first he is on the steamer Imperator, 'Off Athens',.on sick leave making a second time for Corfu, "I went to Scutari on Sunday & was sorry to hear that Asiatic Cholera had begun there. It ... frightens the other patients so as to predispose many to follow their comrades to that picturesque grave yard by the side of the Bosphorus ... There is a monument there to poor Toozy Williams ...", Captain Samuel Toosey Williams (1823-1854, Scots Greys), "it is a very large marble heart & is not in good taste, & there are many almost as bad", now that they are in quarantine "We have been amusing ourselves all the morning ... in determining the geography of the place, & have not come to a satisfactory result, so decide Murray['s Guide] must be incorrect ... I should have liked another scramble over the Acropolis", he talks of "the death of Lord Raglan. What a melancholy end so soon after the unfortunate affair of the 18th. Herbert", apparently Brevet-Colonel the Hon Percy Herbert, " told me that on that day he stood exposed to a heavy fire of grape watching with deep interest the attack of the English on the Redan & it made him very nervous about his safety. Whatever his merits as a General were may admit of an opinion, but everyone in the Crimea allows that he acted with great judgement & temper in all his dealings with the French, which was one of the greatest difficulties connected with the affair", he talks again of the Cholera, "Some parts of the camp were not salubrious from men & horses having been buried not very deep", and "other little annoyances there ... bad water & that always luke warm ... then when one gets up in morning to find an inch or two of dust over everything ... The poor fellows made very certain of Sebastopol the other day & it was a great disappointment", also of the sharp-shooter Major at Gerald Goodlake (1832-1890, Coldstream Guards, V.C. at Inkerman) who "had his servant & pony with saddle bags waiting in one of the ravines which he expected to fill with the spoil of Sebastopol & now they have [to] look forward to another winter", (July 6th 1855), in the second letter he is still on Corfu "as the 82nd have not been sent on to the Crimea & I believe ... that General Simpson has sent word that at present he does not want more men in the Crimea ... The Colonel is ill & has gone to the Lord Bligh's country house for change of air, so I have been in command for the last week & being President of the Mess besides have not had much time to spare. Yesterday I went 16 miles ... to a picnic got up by Mrs P. Barrington. It was too far as the pigeon pies turned bad on the road and the ice turned into water. After dinner the ladies took to scrambling about the rocks & tore their gowns. They found it easier to climb up than down", he talks of going shooting for 'beccafico' (fig-picker) "with a young Greek Count. As the becafico's are early birds we were to start at five but some how or other we did not get away much before seven ... The Ionian Nobility only go to their country houses for a few months in the Autumn when the grapes are picked & the olives gathered. Their titles are Venetian ...but most of them are very poor ... there were more feathers than flesh in the bag so we left it behind ... Major Inge & party have gone to Venice & one of our Captains Rycroft has gone to Ithaca with his company ... There is a report that the doctor of the 82nd has been assassinated at Cephalonia. He was a mad sort of a fellow & the Greeks don't understand that sort of thing ... The Colonel returned this morning so I am no longer in Command ...What a fortunate thing F. Fitzroy's marriage is", their relative Francis Charles FitzRoy, to Harriet Anne Musgrave as his second wife on 1st August 1855, (17th August 1855), together 8 sides 8vo., Off Athens and Corfu, 6th July and 17th August 1855, with the envelope for the first postmarked Trieste 11th July 1855, and two other envelopes Corfu 3rd June and Constantinople 2nd July, both the present letters have year date 1858 by a slip of the pen for
Samuel Toosey Williams went down with fever two days before Balaclava, but insisted on leading his company, engaging the Russian cavalry sabre to sabre with great success against superior odds, then relapsed. The Duke of Cambridge accompanied his sick litter on the steamer to Constantinople where he died in November.