To Kate Field, 10 September 1875

ALS to Kate Field [Friday] 10 September 1875. Single sheet of book folded, laid paper 180x221mm. Watermark E TOWGOOD  Fine. 

The Public Face of Wilkie Collins III 96

September 10th 1875

Dear Miss Field

One line to say 
that I hope you 
were not prevented 
by accident or illness
from favouring me with 
a visit as you proposed.

I am here - for 
the moment - in pouring 
rain, with a very 
rheumatic back and 
shoulders. Possibly 
I may try the coast 
further north in a 
day or two. But, in 
any event, I propose to
be back in London in 
a fortnight. If I 
can be of any service to 
you, pray let me know 
it. Letters addressed 
to 90. Gloucester Place 
will follow me wherever 
I may go.

Vy truly yours
Wilkie Collins

I keep your play, until 
we can talk [del: illegible] about 
it. That book is [deleted character] anything 




but easy to dramatise. The 
writer was the least dramatic 
of modern novelists - or 
one of the least, at any rate.



Kate Field from a photograph in 1865

Mary Katherine Keemle Field (1 October 1838 - 19 May 1896) was an American writer and actor. She was also an advocate of women's rights. She paid several visits to England and met Wilkie Collins on one of these in 1873 when he took her to see his play The New Magdalen at the Olympic Theatre. Kate Field published a biography of the actor Charles Fechter in 1882 to which Wilkie contributed a 20 page chapter. She is said to have had a romantic involvement with Anthony Trollope.

The play referred to by Wilkie is untraced. It could have been a play she was writing or one she was acting in.

All material on these pages is Paul Lewis 1997-2005