[ Beatrice Cecilia Harington, sitter to Lewis Carroll and first Head of St Margaret's House, Bethnal Green. ] 12 Autograph Letters Signed, seven of them to her brother Richard Harington, and four to the widow of her cousin Sir Richard Harington.

Beatrice Cecilia Harington (1852-1936), sitter to and friend of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson [ Lewis Carroll ], first Head of St Margaret's House, Bethnal Green [ Brasenose College, Oxford ]
Publication details: 
Seven letters and a card to her brother between 1897 and 1910. Four letters to her nephew's widow, 1931. From: St Margaret's House, Bethnal Green; 15 Bardwell Road, Oxford; Bishop's House, Jerusalem; Mapperley Hall, Nottingham; Grand Hotel, Varese.
SKU: 19566

Beatrice Cecilia Harington was one of the two daughters of Rev. Dr Richard Harington (1800-1853), Principal of Brasenose College, Oxford. As children she and her sister Alice Margaret (1854-1901) were befriended by Lewis Carroll, who photographed them. Neither of the two girls married, but both were associated with the Settlement Movement in London's East End. Beatrice was the first Head of St. Margaret's House, Bethnal Green, which, according to her Times obituary, was 'the first church settlement for women' in the capital'. It was founded in 1889 as a sister settlement to Oxford House, was run by a committee of Oxford women and alumnae of Cheltenham Ladies' College, working among women and children in the area. See Beatrrice's obituary in The Times, 8 October 1936; and K. B. Beauman, 'Women and the Settlement Movement' (1996). The present collection consists of fifteen items, and is in fair overall condition, lightly aged and worn, two of the items having discoloured leaves. The following description is divided into six sections. ONE: Seven ALsS to her brother Richard Harington. Between 14 July 1897 and 11 April 1910. Totalling 29pp., 12mo. Three of the letters have St. Margaret's House letterheads. Two letters (21 and 28 April 1902) are written from Jerusalem, the first with envelope carrying an autograph note, and stating that she is sharing 'Cabin or bed room with my colleague Miss Porter'. The two letters total 10pp., 12mo, and describe – in a devout and enthusiastic tone – a visit to the city and its holy sites. On 7 October 1897 she writes from St. Margaret's House: We are all flourishing in the respective Settlements, except that Margery's knee makes the most imperceptible, if any progress – We have discovered that the river is a quick and for her, easy means of communication with the “West” [of London] - & she has been twice down to St. Thomas's to see the poor Lutley girl. | I have had a very great anxiety in the terrible illness (at home I am thankful to say) of the daughter of your Ch[rist]. Ch[urch]. Contemporary (?) Mr Pickard – she is an extraordinarily capable little worker amongst us, of 22. years old only – She had a slight bicycle accident & grazed her thumb – 10 days after lock-jaw came on, & she was most frightfully ill for a fortnight – now I am thankful to say there are good hopes of her recovery, though I fear the pain is still very severe at times'. On 10 January 1906 she writes: 'I finished my day out, but a long Committee on Licensing Reform at the Oxford House - & my actual day's work will shortly open it's closing scene by the Girls' Club from 8.30 on'. TWO: ALS to her nephew 'Dick' [Richard Harington (1861-1931), the future 12th baronet]. On letterhead of Mapperley Hall, Nottingham. 21 February 1899. 2pp., 12mo. She enquires after 'the best person to consult about “Criminal Investigation”? It is a matter of very threatening anonymous letters, & of mysterious – but so far – unsuccessful personal assaults on a woman - | Do you know anything of Slater as a Detective? What sort of reputation has he?' THREE: ACS to her cousin Sir Richard Harington (1835-1911), 11th Baronet. 19 May [ 1902. ] Sending birthday greetings. FOUR: Four AlsS to Selina, Lady Harington (1874-1945), widow of her nephew Sir Richard Harington, 12th Baronet, and daughter of 6th Viscount Melville. The four dating from between 6 February and 31 March 1931, and all from 15 Bardwell Road, Oxford. All in envelopes addressed by her to 'The Honble Lady Harington | Whitbourne Court | Worcester'. Totalling 16pp., 12mo. Written immediately after his death, and each with mourning border. Sensitive communications exploring common loss, of which the following (3 March 1831) is representative: 'I thought it so kind & nice of you to tell me of Dick's approving remarks of me in the long ago days of youth – Knowing his ideal in his “beautiful Selina”, his opinion is valuable! But though it is good indeed to know, as you & others do, how unswerving his devotion & admiration were until the last, yet it does leave a terrible blank when the days go on without that unfailing comfort & support. You will be upheld, I know for the sake of your boys - & they for you when the first overwhelming shock has passed.' The letter ends: 'I am so glad Pss. Marie Louise wrote such genuine appreciation'. The last of the four letters is accompanied by a printed devotional booklet. FIVE: Manuscript 'Inventory of Goods collected this 28th. day March 1900 from 19 Bradmore Rd Oxford', the items belonging to Selina's sister Margaret Agnata Hamilton (later Pollock) (1871-1954). On four long slips of paper. Docketed on reverse of last leaf: 'Messrs. Archer & Co | Deliver the within mentioned goods to Messrs. Wenwood & Son on demand. | Richard Harington | (per M. A. H.) | Whitbourne Court | Worcester | 16. April 1900.' SIX: Slip of paper on which Beatrice has written to her cousin (who has docketed it): 'Bedouin Arab's Belt from Jerusalem - | Will it do to hang up in the Hall? With very best wishes & love from | B. C. H. | May 20. 1902'.