In response to:
Amateurs from the July 1, 1965 issue
To the Editors:
A review of my book, A Royal Affinity, appears on pages 19 and 20 of your issue of July first. Paragraph two contains the following sentences: “She solemnly refers several times to the London Bureau of Records and its unpublished manuscripts. There is no such place.”
I have consulted a diary I kept of a visit to London in October, 1962. It and the notes I took on October sixth of that year are the only proof I have of having examined the letters in question—unless, indeed, my signature in the visitors’ book in the Round Room of the Office of Public Records has survived. The sentences I have quoted above, however, have been so worded as to give the impression to your readers, who must take the competence of your reviewers on your authority, that I have fabricated historical data which does not exist.
This is a serious charge. It should not be made by a responsible periodical without careful investigation. I feel that you owe me an apology.
Constance C. Wright
Pleasantville, New York
J.H Plumb replies:
Obviously Miss Wright never reads with care. I said there was no such place as the London Bureau of Records, and there is not. I did not suggest that the manuscripts did not exist, otherwise I should have said so. I accused Miss Wright of inventing a place. That stands. Had she given class marks and precise references, one might have guessed where her manuscripts might have been found. It is to this totally slipshod, unscholarly procedure that I was objecting.
August 5, 1965