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From W. D. Fox   8 March [1856]


Is trying to procure some cocks for CD.

Believes Scotch deerhounds are mongrels.

Author:  William Darwin Fox
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  8 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  DAR 164: 174
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1646

From John Morris   1 March 1856



Informs CD on age of land, freshwater, and marine Mollusca.

Author:  John Morris
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  1 Mar 1856
Classmark:  DAR 205.2: 246
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1835

From M. J. Berkeley   7 March 1856


Reports on breeding experiments with various seeds: corn, aubergine, kidney beans, sugar-peas. Speculates that cause of changes in seed colour in sugar-peas may be mere variation rather than result of impregnation.

Author:  Miles Joseph Berkeley
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  7 Mar 1856
Classmark:  DAR 160: 174
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1836

To George Henry Kendrick Thwaites   8 March 1856


Hopes GHKT will publish on variations in plant species at different elevations. Asks about variations among plants on heights of Ceylon.

Promises to publish on the species question.

Asks for pigeons’ skins from India or Ceylon, and for ducks’ skeletons. Mentions help promised by E. F. Kelaart.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  George Henry Kendrick Thwaites
Date:  8 Mar 1856
Classmark:  American Philosophical Society (Mss.B.D25.125)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1837

From Thomas Hutton   8 March 1856


TH believes that the progeny of hybrid crosses, in which a domesticated or "artificial" race is involved, tend to resemble the more "natural" of their parents [see Natural selection, p. 486].

Provides some information on local hybrid domestic geese [see Natural selection, p. 439] and pigeons.

Author:  Thomas Hutton
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  8 Mar 1856
Classmark:  DAR 166: 283
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1838

To Syms Covington   9 March 1856


Thanks SC for his interesting account of the state of the colony. SC was wise to settle there where his sons have much better prospects.

Has finished his book on barnacles [1854]. Royal Medal awarded him chiefly for this work.

Asks SC whether he has observed any odd imported breeds of poultry, for his work on variation of species.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Syms Covington
Date:  9 Mar 1856
Classmark:  Sydney Mail, 9 August 1884, p. 255
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1840

To Herbert Spencer   11 March [1856]


Thanks for copy of HS’s Principles of psychology [1855].

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Herbert Spencer
Date:  11 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  DAR 147: 484a
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1841

To Samuel Birch   [12 March 1856]


Arranges an appointment.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Samuel Birch
Date:  [12 Mar 1856]
Classmark:  British Museum (Department of the Middle East, correspondence 1826–67: 1489)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1841A

To W. B. Tegetmeier   15 March [1856]


Asks WBT to try to purchase some specific pigeons.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Bernhard Tegetmeier
Date:  15 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  Archives of the New York Botanical Garden (Charles Finney Cox Collection)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1842

To W. D. Fox   15 March [1856]


Believes WDF’s case of mongrel Scotch deerhound is very valuable for him.

Mentions his work on pigeons and chickens.

Fears sometimes he will break down: "My subject gets bigger and bigger".

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Darwin Fox
Date:  15 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  Christ’s College Library, Cambridge (MS 53 Fox 97)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1843

To Miles Joseph Berkeley   18 March [1856]


Thanks MJB for information which he is including in his article for the Linnean Society.

Refers to the peas "which produce the black or intensely purple pods". [See 1834 and 1836.]

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Miles Joseph Berkeley
Date:  18 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  Joseph R. Sakmyster, ADS Autographs (dealer) (no date)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1843A

To W. B. Tegetmeier   20 March [1856]


Discusses various pigeons and would welcome receiving any odd breed. Some pigeons have died from overeating bag salt.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  William Bernhard Tegetmeier
Date:  20 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  Archives of the New York Botanical Garden (Charles Finney Cox Collection)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1844

From Edward Blyth   [c. 22 March 1856]


Gives references to works on fowls and pigeons.

Observations on Gallinaceae.

Musk ox skull from southern England is additional evidence for Agassiz’s glacial period. Owen is mistaken in calling it a buffalo.

EB describes the buffalo proper.

Will send domestic pigeon specimens.

Believes pigeons were not bred in India before the Mohammedan conquest. Describes Indian breeds.

Believes the ass is an African rather than an Asian production. Discusses various species of ass and their distribution.

Wild horned cattle on borders of Pilibhit and Shahjahanpur.

[Notes received by CD on 6 May 1856.]

Author:  Edward Blyth
Addressee:  Charles Robert Darwin
Date:  [c. 22 Mar 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 98: 133–9
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1845

To C. J. Andersson   25 March [1856]


Thanks for proof sheets of Lake Ngami: or, exploration and discoveries during four years’ wanderings in the wilds of South Western Africa (Andersson 1856).

Is very grateful for the information CJA has provided about cattle in South Africa, and wishes to ask further questions about native breeds.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  Charles John (Carl Johann) Andersson
Date:  25 Mar [1856]
Classmark:  National Library of South Africa, Cape Town
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-1845F

To John Lubbock    [March? 1856]


JL is studying Cynipidae. CD sends galls for his examination.

Author:  Charles Robert Darwin
Addressee:  John Lubbock, 4th baronet and 1st Baron Avebury
Date:  [Mar? 1856]
Classmark:  DAR 263: 10 (EH 88206459)
Letter no:  DCP-LETT-2028