Janry 15 1
W. Sautter Esqre
I had no idea you were so sensitive to criticism or I should not have referred so plainly to the crudeness of you plan (if I may assume it to be yours) of photographing the eclipse, or to the failure in carrying it out.
I usually find that such criticism is gratefully accepted by amateurs as a help to success.
The idea of taking photographs of the sun a quarter of an inch in diameter in order to serve a useful purpose. [sic] may be valued in the light of the fact: that 4 inch sun pictures are now considered too small to be of service and that partial eclipses of the sun present no features that are deemed worthy of permanent regard unless the photos are upwards of 4 inches in diameter.
Should any other astronomical scheme of yours be submitted to me, I will remember your objection to adverse criticism.
But in the case under review there was no alternative. A scheme of photographing the sun with the aid of cameras. and [sic] the combination of photographers in several colonies was submitted to me for my cooperation. had [sic] I consented I should have made myself a laughing stock amongst astronomers. The reasons for not-doing so: you seem to think unnecessary severe criticism: if I am to judge your …… of 10th instant. The fact being that they were very mildly stated, because it was evident that the writer of the letter submitted to me: knew nothing about what he was proposing to do. and [sic] I did not wish or intend to be severe.
Your letter of the tenth Instant, I will preserve amongst a number of curios I have collected during a long public service, of its kind it is the most remarkable I have.
Yours very truly
H. C. Russell