In Clarence's Time - St. Joseph's Home for the Aged Poor

Written by Marcus Bicknell on .

home for the aged 1home for the aged 2home for the aged 3As part of the research for Valerie Lester on the upcoming biography of Clarence Bicknell, we have been able to see and record collections of letters and images relating to his life but kept in far-flung museums.

We knew from Christopher Chippindale that Clarence Bicknell's letters to the Baroness Von Taube were in the British Museum (Natural History) in London, and was exciting to go to look through them and to photograph some of them. The letters themselves are being transcribed so that they can be read more easily and it may be that we can make them available on this web site in 2018.

In the meantime I found some images which might be of interest to you.

Little is recorded about Clarence's work for the underprivileged of Bordighera, but this must also be of interest to Valerie Lester for the biography. Here is the second appeal for funds, on two pages, for the fitting out of St. Joseph's Home for the Aged Poor, probably late December 1911 or early 1912. Clarence (for it is surely he who wrote the text) credits Giacomo Vialle's efforts as follows:

"Padre Giacomo, our unwearied Apostle of Charity, has been in some mesaure able to realise a project which he has had at heart for many years, namely, the foundation of a Home for the Aged Poor"

50,000 francs were still need to "furnish and endow the home".

The third photo is the subscription bulletin to fill out if you wanted to give some money. There are several lines on the form which should have encouraged supporters to solicit donations from others.

By the way, although I did not post this pictures with this in mind, the The Clarence Bicknell 2018 Centenary Fund is open and you can donate in a variety of ways including PayPal and bank transfer in the UK or France in any currency. Target 110,000 euros. We have three major donations in and I will publish them this week. Details in English here and in Italian here

Next to them in the British Museum collection is this postcard of The Tearooms at Bordighera, probably around 1910. Was it here that Bicknell would distribute the appeal letters on behalf of his friend Viale?

Does anyone have a copy of this card with more details, such as the exact date?