There are clues as to who might have acquired the plate and printed it either during Whistler's life or shortly afterwards. One impression printed in black ink on cream laid paper watermarked with a hunting horn and shield (
) bears an inscription by Mortimer Luddington Menpes
(1860-1938): 'Whistler printed by Mortimer Menpes'. Another is said to have been owned at one time by Menpes (
). Menpes printed plates under Whistler's tutelage from 1881 on, and had a large collection of Whistler's etchings and several copper plates, including The Menpes Children
, which he printed for publication in his memoirs of Whistler, in 1904. 6
Furthermore, in a draft catalogue of Whistler's etchings, Joseph Pennell
(1860-1926) wrote 'Mr Menpes owns this plate.' 7
He was definitely sufficiently experienced to print Whistler's plates.
Menpes 1904 A
7: J. Pennell, n.d., draft catalogue (cat. no. 246), Library of Congress, Pennell Collection, Box. 353.