[ Sir William Martins, Gentleman Usher. ] Autograph Letter in the third person to actor-manager Benjamin Webster, asking him to arrange a performance of a farce at the Adelphi Theatre 'at the rather earnest wish of a former Lord Chamberlain'.

Sir William Martins (c.1787-1874), Gentleman Usher to the Sword of State [ Benjamin Webster [ Benjamin Nottingham Webster ] (1797-1882), actor-manager; Adelphi Theatre, London ]
Publication details: 
St James's Palace [ London ]. 16 February [ no year, but on paper watermarked 1844 ].
SKU: 17450

4pp., 12mo. Bifolium. In fair condiion, on aged and worn paper. Marked 'Private', and written with an urgency suggesting the involvement of royalty behind the request. The letter begins: 'Sir William Martins presents his Compliments to Mr Webster and at theh rather earnest wish of a former Lord Chamberlain entreats Mr Webster, if it be practicable to allow the Farce of "Powder & Ball" to be played at the Adelphi one evening this Week either Wednesday Thursday or Friday'. He will 'explain further' and writes 'in case he should not be fortunate enough to meet Mr Webster at the Theatre'. He ends by explaining that he 'would not think of proposing such a thing except under the circumstances alluded to and because in this case all his Feelings go with the Wish'. The following obituary was published in the Journal of the Archaeological Association, 1875: 'Sir William Martins, the senior gentleman-usher in daily waiting on the Queen, and usher to the sword of state, died at his residence, in Hyde Park Gardens, on the 5th June, 1874, in the eighty-seventh year of his age. The deceased gentleman was knighted in 1840, on the occasion of her Majesty's marriage. By Sir William Martins' death a valuable appointment in the royal household became vacant. Sir William, who used to form a prominent figure in royal processions and other state occasions, held a post in the household, in which he rose to the highest place, under four successive sovereigns and under a long succession of Lords Chamberlain.'