Though you will have to wait until the Clark reopens in 2016 to be able to consult the material in person (sorry to be a tease), we are proud to announce that the finding aid for the More House Archive is now complete and is available online! This collection originally came from More House, the home of the Hope-Nicholson family at 52 Tite Street, Chelsea (London), for over 100 years. The home was first purchased in 1892 by Adrian Hope and Laura Troubridge Hope and the archive contains items created by them, their daughter Jaqueline Hope-Nicholson and son-in-law Hedley Hope-Nicholson, and their grandchildren, especially Felix Hope-Nicholson and Marie-Jaqueline Lancaster. The Hope-Nicholsons – particularly Jaqueline, Hedley and Felix – made More House into a living museum, filled with artifacts from their lives and the lives of their ancestors and relatives (as well as things related to those they admired). The artifacts and artwork were all dispersed after unsuccessful attempts to turn the house into a research center after Felix’s death in 1990, but the archive stayed in the hands of living family members, until we purchased it in 2013.
The Troubridge-Hope-Nicholson-Gurney-Cleghorn family that emerges from the More House Archive was extremely well-connected and the archive contains material related to a wide range of 19th and 20th century figures and movements. For example, not only was More House just down the street from Oscar and Constance Wilde’s home at 34 Tite Street, but Adrian Hope was a cousin of Constance’s and became the guardian of their sons Cyril and Vyvyan after Wilde’s incarceration. Similarly, artists such as Edward Burne-Jones and John Everett Millais feature in the archive because of Laura Troubridge Hope’s career as a painter, and lesbian writer John Radclyffe Hall and her partner Una Vincenzo Troubridge are included because Una was the second wife of Laura’s brother Ernest. Other people represented in the More House Archive include John Betjeman, George Kolkhorst, Queen Victoria and the Royal Family, Trelawny Dayrell Reed, C.K. Scott-Moncrieff, Lord Alfred Douglas, Edward Scott-Snell, Harold Nicolson and Ada Leverson, among many many others.
Because the More House Archive and the family it documents is so extensive, we created a couple of supplements to help researchers. A family tree to the very extended family is online here and includes most of the family members who appear in the archive. There is also a pdf attachment showing some images of what the archive looked like before processing, when items were bundled in old suitcases and trunks. Both of these resources have links in the completed finding aid as well.
We hope that you are as excited about the More House Archive as we are!
** All of the hard work on the More House Archive was done by Erin Hurley and Rebecca Fenning Marschall, with grant funding provided by the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation **