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Darwin Correspondence Project

To Thomas Salt   26 December [1851]1

Down Farnborough Kent

Dec. 26th.

My dear Sir

I am much obliged for your note informing me that Sir J. Hanmer has given notice to pay off the mortgage on June 25th. next.2 I am sorry for it, but as I can buy guaranteed Ry. shares, which will pay nearly or quite four per cent, I do not think I would have reduced the interest; even had I been asked.3

I yesterday sent a note to Mr Jos. Wedgwood to be forwarded to you, (if he consented) asking you to give notice to the Exs: of the late Capt. Muckleston to pay the 1000£: but now this large sum of 10,000£ is to be paid up, I do not wish for Capt. Muckleston’s thousand, without you think it likely that it will in any case be soon paid up, for in that case, I should like it soon. If, however, you suppose that this 1000£ will be kept for some years, please burn my note, & let the affair rest as it is.4

Pray believe me | My dear Sir | Yours faithfully & obliged | Ch. R. Darwin

To | T. Salt Esqre

P.S. I have opened my letter to say, that upon further reflexion, I will request you to be so good as to give notice to Executor of Capt Muckleston, if you receive (as I anticipate) Mr. Jos. Wedgwoods consent.—


The year is established by the reference to the paying of John Hanmer’s mortgage (see n. 2, below).
The note from Salt has not been found. CD had inherited Hanmer’s £10,000 mortgage from his father, Robert Waring Darwin (Shropshire Archives, Salt Collection, D3651/B/47/1/1/1/1/6). According to CD’s Investment book (Down House MS), p. 45, the mortgage was paid off on 1 June 1852.
Hanmer had been paying four per cent on his mortgage. CD held stock in a number of different railway companies (see CD’s Investment book).
See letter to Thomas Salt, 24 December 1851. The loan to Edward Muckleston (1790–1851) was not repaid until 1854 (CD’s Investment book). Josiah Wedgwood III was one of Emma Darwin’s trustees. The loan to Muckleston was part of her trust property.


Asks Thomas Salt to accept the repayment of a mortgage from Captain Muckleston’s executors, if Josiah Wedgwood agrees.

Letter details

Letter no.
Charles Robert Darwin
Thomas Salt
Source of text
Rachel Salt (private collection); sold by Spink’s (dealers), July 2018
Physical description

Please cite as

Darwin Correspondence Project, “Letter no. 1466G,” accessed on 25 September 2021,

Also published in The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, vol. 24 (Supplement)