London, South Kensington
29 November 1996
Autograph letter signed ("I. K. Brunel") to [Captain Christopher] Claxton, 8 pages, 8vo., 18 Duke Street West, July 20th 1855.
Discussing the possiblities of reefing the paddle boards of the Great Eastern in case of bad weather or a storm. "In determining the size of our paddle wheels -- it is necessary that I should satisfy myself as to the certainty of our being able to lay to -- and reef the paddle boards." He is anxious about her performance on passing or going round the Cape. "There must therefore be no doubt -- unless we can make quite sure of being able to reef somewhere between Lat. S. 20 off the west coast of South Africa -- and Long. E. 50 -- after passing the Cape -- we must so arrange the paddle to the whole voyage and give up reefing altogether -- which I would much regret -- Coming home I don't so much care for it ... I should think the reefing ought to be done in 5 or 6 hours if the paddles can be secured."
Creased on folds.
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