4th February 1941

Very busy on Committee business from yesterday.

Rang Benton today, to ask for news about the Doctor’s papers. Benton in bed with flu, but Mrs. B. told me they had seen Mrs Lyon-Campbell [Dr Laver's sister], and that everything was left to her – all the books, pictures, notes, everything! As to William Wire’s “Diary”, Mrs Lyon-Campbell knew nothing of it. [Dr Laver had borrowed William Wire's diary from the Museum's collections before his death]. She proposes to shut up the house and go back to Devonshire at once. What an awful tragedy. The results of nearly a century of archaeological research in Colchester in the hands of a woman who has not the slightest regard for them or for her brother’s work.

I rang Cr. Sam Blomfield, and begged him to see Marshall the lawyer again, which he promised although not holding much hope. Benton is apparently prostrated by the news that the [Essex Archaeological] Society gets nothing, and does not intend to take any further action. Wire’s “Diary” is abandoned to its fate.

William Wire was a 19th century antiquarian who kept a diary of archaeological finds in Colchester from 1842-1857. EJR's decision to keep a journal had been influenced by his knowledge of Wire's diary.


janey said...

William Wire's diary is now in the Essex Record Office. Not sure what happened to Laver's papers though.

E J Rudsdale said...

The blogs over the next few days will reveal what happened to Laver's papers, so do keep following to find out. CP