Lewis Carroll rarity with Jersey connection

Lewis Carroll rarity with Jersey connection

Carroll – real name Charles Lutwidge Dodgson – was a 54-year-old bachelor when he gave the book to 28-year-old Albina ‘Lily’ Falle, of St Saviour, in January 1887.

Carroll signed the book in his trademark violet ink: ‘Lily Falle from the author January 1887.’

The book is now expected to sell for between £12,000 and £16,000 at Sotheby’s in London on 10 July.

Lily first met Carroll when he visited Jersey in April 1884. Lily’s father was Joshua Falle, a Jersey judge, who was born in St Saviour. Carroll sent a signed copy of Alice’s Adventures to Lily’s sister, Rozel, in August 1869 and then gave Lily a signed copy of Through the Looking-Glass at Christmas 1871.

Lily’s signed copy of Alice’s Adventures Under Ground will be auctioned at Sotheby’s in London together with an 1869 letter from Lewis Carroll to Lily’s father, which presumably refers to the book he gave to Rozel. In the letter, Carroll says that he had been ‘at my publisher’s yesterday’ and ‘thought I might as well get the book for your little girl at once’.

Carroll also says that he has ‘a very large collection of photographs (many of them of my own doing) including many portraits of my young friends’ and then asks Mr Falle if he – Carroll – could buy a print ‘if you have ever had a good one taken of your little daughter (a vignette of the head and shoulders would be the best form)’.

Carroll’s diary entry for 21 July 1871 records that ‘Mr Falle gave me a photo of his second girl, Albina (Lily)’.

Lily Falle – full name Albina Bertram Falle – was born in St Saviour in 1858, so this year marks the the 160th anniversary of her birth. She never married and was still living in Jersey in 1940 at the time of the German invasion. She was in her late nineties when she died in 1957.

Her sister Rozel lived to be 101.

Records show that in 1891 Lily and her parents, her sister Rozel and the family’s three live-in servants, St Helier-born housemaid Eliza Bailey (37), housemaid Ada Clift (20) and cook Sarah Barrick (20) were living at Plaisance, St Saviour.

– Advertisement –
– Advertisement –