Charles Darwin (1809-1882).
Document signed (‘Charles R Darwin’), n.p., 27 November 1855.
One-page fragment, 205 x 325mm, the date partially in autograph, countersigned by witnesses ‘Catherine Thorley Spinster, Down, Kent’ and ‘Henry Allen Wedgwood Esquire, Tenby, Pembrokeshire’.
Darwin adds a codicil to his last will and testament. The fragment opens imperfectly, making reference to an investment ‘which shall for at least three years immediately preceding the time of the investment have paid dividends of at least Three pounds per cent per annum on the ordinary Shares or Stock of such Company or Companies’; it is signed by Darwin and his two witnesses.
Darwin asked Catherine Thorley (1828/9–1911), a governess at Down House from 1850-6, and his brother-in-law Henry Allen Wedgwood (1799-1885) to witness this codicil to his will, which he signs more fully than usual, incorporating the ‘R’ for his middle name: Robert.