Ref NoDWC/1/7
TitleLetter from Alfred R. Wallace to Mr Skeels
DescriptionHand-written copy of a letter from Alfred R. Wallace to Mr E. R. Serocold Skeels. The letter is headed "Copy" and is not written in Wallace’s hand.

The letter thanks Mr Skeels for a cheque to cover Wallace's expenses and giving him a definition of a "medium" for an ongoing court case, Colley v. Maskelyne. Mr Colley was appointed arch-deacon by the Bishop of Colenso he was a friend of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and shared with him an interest in spiritualism. Mr Maskelyne was a well know London based Illusionist. The plaintiff claimed damages for libel against Mr Maskelyne for asserting that he was not and never had been an archdeacon and Mr Maskelyne counter-claimed that he was deserving of a £1000 reward Colley had promised to anyone who could produce specific illusions, which he claimed to have managed. Colley went on to win the case.

Wallace goes on to touch upon his own thoughts on spiritualism, "There is there, as here, an illimitable universe to be studied before it can be understood. There as here, it is only the few that study such things, or even begin, dimly to understand them."

Mr Skeels was part of a commission put together by The London Daily Mail in 1908 to inquire into the truth (or otherwise) of spirit photography The commission was composed of three non-Spiritualists, R. Child Bayley, F. J. Mortimer, and E. Sanger-Shepherd, and three supporters, A. P. Sinnett, Robert King and Skeels.
Date27 April 1907
Extent1 f
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