British Liberal Statesman who was four times Prime Minister (1868-74, 1880-85, 1886 and 1892-94).
ALS. 2pp and integral blank leaf. Printed letterhead of 10 Downing Street struck through and the address 1 C[arlton] Gardens added in his hand. August 20th 1892. To [William] Woodall. Together with a fine contemporary portrait photograph.
"I have now the pleasure of requesting with the full concurrence of Mr. Campbell-Bannerman, that you will assume in my new administration the office of Financial Secretary of the War Department, with a portion of the duties of which you are already familiar. The charge is an important one and will require all your energies which I am sure that in the public interest you will devote to the duties incumbent on the holder of such an office."
8vo. Approx 7.5 x 4.75 inches. Some browning and mounting residue to the verso of integral blank leaf but the text leaf is fine. The portrait of Gladstone is a fine 19th century gelatin silver print photograph. Gladstone, at the height of his political powers, is shown in a strong head and shoulders pose. It measures approx 6 x 4 inches (excluding mount) and has been laid down on card from an album leaf. The mount has a few foxing spots but the photograph is in fine condition.
Both the letter and the photograph are from a 19th century collection made by the radical Liberal M.P., William Woodall. Woodall was M.P. for Hanley. Previously, as M.P. for Stoke on Trent, he had served in Gladstone's previous administration as Surveyor-General of the Ordnance. In both instances he had worked under Campbell-Bannerman who was Secretary of State for War in both governments.