|Description||The main part of the collection (MAX/1-24) consists of letters from Alexander Maxwell to his sister, Margaret Eccles (nee Maxwell) and to other members of the Maxwell family while he was serving in the Crimea as an officer with the Border Regiment, 1854-1856. Maxwell comments on life on board ship, arrival in Constantinople, conditions in the trenches, bad weather, fatalistic attitudes of the men, the defence of Sebastapol, conditions and supplies, death of Lord Raglan, alcoholism among the men, and peace in 1856.|
The collection also includes some miscellaneous items mostly relating to the theatre, 1841-1914, including letters from Henry Irving, H. Beerbohm Tree and others, to Agnes Beaumont (MAX/25-33).
|Administrative History||Alexander Maxwell (b 1816) was the son of William Maxwell of Darvagel, co. Renfrew and his wife Mary (nee Campbell). He was one of thirteen children and his siblings included a brother, Thomas and a sister, Margaret, who married William Eccles, a captain in the Coldstream Guards. They are the main recipients of his letters. Other siblings are mentioned in the correspondence and include Colin, Frank and Robert. According to Burke's 'Landed Gentry' (1898), in the entry for Hall-Maxwell family of Dargavel, Alexander was a Colonel in the Border Regiment and General in the Army. The collection includes a copy of the award of his commission of Lt. Colonel of the 46th Regiment issued by the General Commanding in Chief of the House Guards. |