SIR HENRY FIELDING DICKENS (January 16, 1849 – December 21, 1933) was an English barrister was the eighth of ten children of English author Charles Dickens and his wife Catherine. While living at Gads Hill Place, his father’s country home, he and his brother Edward started the Gad’s Hill Gazette. His father was a frequent contributor. In 1873, he was called to the bar and in 1892, he was appointed Queen’s Counsel.
3 pp, 4 ½ x 6 7/8, ALS, Feb. 13, 1926, written on his personal stationary with his address of 8, Mulberry Walk and his telephone number. Unclear who Dickens was responding to, but possibly to a writer seeking answers to questions for research purposes.
“...In answer to the question you sent to me
“Yes: my brother [Francis J. Dickens] joined the Bengal Mounted Police in January 1864 and remained there until after our father’s death in 1870. After this he resigned and... eventually he won a commission in the Canadian Mounted Police which gave him far better a life. In the Riel Rebellion he distinguished himself...He eventually died...with a sudden attack of the heart in the year 1886. I was at the school at Boulogne [a boarding school in France]...The school was hit...but I have nothing to complain of about it.
“Plory was the nickname of...Edward Bulwer-Lytton...and the name stuck with him and his family all his life.
“I am faithfully
“Henry F. Dickens”
FRANCIS J. DICKENS was one of the first officers of the newly formed North-West Mounted Police [research included]. Like many early Mountie recruits, he was considered a mediocre officer.
When Louis Riel led the rebellion in Canada’s West in the spring of 1885, the inhabitants of Battleford were panic-stricken. Parts of their village had been burned and looted by tribes of native Americans. Fort Pitt was not well defended against the warriors under Cree war chief Wandering Spirit and was burned. When Dickens and his men arrived at Battleford, they were welcomed as heroes.
Letter is in good condition. Some ink brushing on the first page. Light soiling. Some scraping to the verso from removing previous mounting, affecting nothing. Henry Dickens’ handwriting is a bit challenging to read.
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