A substantial collection of correspondence, manuscripts and typescripts, printed documents and newspaper cuttings relating to the genealogy of the Conan Doyles, 1898-1950s, the correspondence to Mary Conan Doyle ('the Mam', approximately 20 letters) and to Adrian Conan Doyle (including retained copies of outgoing letters), the manuscripts including four autograph notes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, on his Pack and Foley ancestors, 3½ pages, 8vo, also including an autograph manuscript by Michael Conan on the distant roots of the Conans, beginning with Leo III, The Isaurian, Emperor of the East, 13 leaves, 8vo, the birth certificate of Charles Altamont Doyle, and a number of family trees and genealogical reports.
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was imbued by the Mam with a proud sense of his Irish ancestry, and goes into the subject at slightly apologetic length in Memories and Adventures -- his boast was always the family lineage back to Edward III -- 'we trace back to Plantagenet blood through the Louvain Percies' -- the family trees present here go back specifically to the marriage of Eleanor, niece of Henry III, to Henry Percy, 8th Baron. The Mam's correspondence here, and Adrian's correspondence in the 1940s and 1950s, concern in particular the links with the Conans, the Pack family and the Percies of Ballintemple, but also referring to the Scotts of Nurley and the Foleys of Worcestershire: Adrian ends his researches with the conclusion that they are 'entitled to quarter the arms of Doyle with the coats of Foley & Pack & Percy quarterly'. Adrian's correspondence, in particular with the Genealogical Office in Dublin, begins in 1948 with the feeling that 'it is high time we brought up to date our confirmations and various quarterings'. By 1953 he is dangling the prospect of a Conan Doyle bequest to the Irish nation in exchange for honorary citizenship -- an offer which is withdrawn in a terrible huff on 10 May 1953 when it is pointed out to him that no such status exists in Ireland.