Alfred Russel Wallace's address books are now available for downloading.

Although letters are the focus of our project, we will make other Wallace-related manuscripts available if we a) already have copies of them in digital form, or b) if we need to make scans of them because they are useful to our project in some way. A good case in point are Wallace's two surviving address books, which we are fortunate to have in the Wallace Family Archive here at the Natural History Museum in London. These books are a very important tool for: 1) helping to identify correspondents, 2) helping to work out the full addresses of correspondents, and 3) as a record of who Wallace (probably) corresponded with (some of the people listed he probably visited in person and didn't write letters to etc). Point 3 will be especially important in the future, once we have obtained copies of Wallace's correspondence from the repositories we know about, since we can use the names in the address books to help us to track down hitherto undiscovered caches of letters. If, for example, a "Prof. Joe Bloggs" is listed in one of the books but we don't know of any letters to or from him, then it might be worth trying to find out if his letters are in an archive somewhere. Often (usually!) collections in archives are not catalogued to item level, so if we did manage to find an uncatalogued collection of his correspondence, it would probably be worth searching through it looking for Wallace letters.

The earliest of Wallace's address books was used by him between c. 1864 and c. 1872,  both for listing addresses and for recording his investments in shares etc. The investment records occupy one end of the book and the addresses start from the other end and are upside down relative to the investment notes (note that the whole of this part of the book is included in the pdf file). Also in this book are some interesting lists, such as a list of the people Wallace sent copies of his book "The Malay Archipelago" to when it was first published, and a list of "Persons to whom Hampden has abused me" (John Hampden was a flat earth believer who hounded Wallace for very many years). Also note that Charles Darwin and Rajah James Brooke are listed in the address part. You can download a copy of this book by CLICKING HERE.

The second address book has been 'opened from both ends' like the first - with address lists running from one end, and notes about garden plants starting at the other end; upside down relative to the addresses (these pages have been flipped in the pdf so that they are readable). There are four separate lists of addresses in this book, each of which is arranged from A to Z, and between each and the next address list are various notes and lists, some of which are historically quite important. Obviously what happened was that Wallace reserved a certain number of pages at a time for an address list, and he would then write various notes on the pages following the list. When space ran out on the pages reserved for the addresses, Wallace began another list of addresses after the notes he had jotted down at the end of the last list. To download a copy of this address book CLICK HERE.

Note that currently the size limit for files uploaded to this site is 20 MB, which limited the resolution of the pdfs I could provide. However, larger and better versions of these notebooks will be provided in the future.

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Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith