Part Four, covering the period 1810-1815, was a crucial one for Southey’s career and reputation. It has, however, never before been fully documented or fully understood. By 1810 he was established in Keswick...
381. Joseph Weston to Robert Baldwin, 10 April 1824*
73, Peascod-street, Windsor, April 10, 1824.
Some months ago I called on you, at the request of the family of the late Mr. Robert Bloomfield, for the purpose of learning the state of their accounts with your firm.
At that time, it was difficult to ascertain the general situation of their affairs, which, upon subsequent inquiry, turn out to be considerably embarrassed. As I happen to be personally acquainted with most of their creditors, I think I may have influence enough with a great majority, to induce them to accept a moderate composition in discharge of their several claims, provided any part of the Bloomfields' property, remaining in your hands, can be rendered immediately available to that purpose. My present object, therefore, is, to request you will be so good as to inform me, whether you are willing to advance the sum of one hundred pounds, in anticipation of the payments, which the family may expect from that source—and if not, whether the same sum can be raised by premature sale of part of the said property, within one month from the present date. By such arrangements, I think the half-copyrights may be preserved to the family, which, being their only resource, is an object very desirable.
If it is not giving you too much trouble, I should feel obliged if you will inform me, what has been the clear total amount, which Mr. Bloomfield and his family have derived from their property in your possession, from first to last.
There is a difference of opinion on these points, between myself and other friends of the family, (who have examined the accounts) which you only can determine.
I take the liberty of begging an early answer, because other objects will soon require my presence in a distant part of the country. Apologising for this trouble,
I have the honour to be, Sir,
your obedient servant,
Address: To R. Baldwin Esq., / London