Public and Political: general: Lord Alfred Douglas libel actions.

Reference code: CHAR 2/127

Part of: CHAR 2
Next record: CHAR 2/128
Previous record: CHAR 2/126

Date: 1900 - 1923

Scope/content:

Papers relating to the legal proceedings in 1922-23 against Lord Alfred Douglas arising from his allegation that WSC had issued a false communique about the Battle of Jutland to allow Jewish financiers led by Sir Ernest Cassel to make a profit on the stock market.

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Contained records

Reference Record Date
CHAR 2/127/1 Letter from Sir Felix Cassel (Judge Advocate General Office) to WSC reporting that he has had a copy made of WSC's account with Sir Ernest Cassel between 1900 and 1917 [see CHAR 2/127/145-149], that Sir Ernest did not buy or sale any British securities during May and June 1916, and that Sir Felix is having the Branksome Dene and Yatton Paddocks visitors books searched to see whether WSC stayed at either place in May or June 1916. 27 Apr 1923
CHAR 2/127/2 Letter from Sir Felix Cassel (Putteridge Bury, Luton, [Bedfordshire]) to WSC reporting that the visitors book of Branksome Dene shows that WSC stayed there at the weekend of 17 June 1916, inviting WSC and CSC to visit and mentioning that he has a tennis court on which CSC could play. 28 Apr 1923
CHAR 2/127/3-4 Letter from Sir Jame Masterton-Smith (Colonial Office) to WSC stating that he is certain that WSC did not communicate with him before the first communique about the Battle of Jutland was issued. 09 Jun 1923
CHAR 2/127/5-6 Part of a satirical letter from Harold Spencer on the allegation that WSC issued a false communique about the Battle of Jutland to enable Jewish interests to manipulate the stock market. [1923]
CHAR 2/127/7 Envelope addressed to WSC at 2 Sussex Square. May 1923
CHAR 2/127/8 Envelope addressed by Lord Alfred Douglas to WSC at 2 Sussex Square. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/9 Envelope addressed by Lord Alfred Douglas to WSC at 2 Sussex Square. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/10 Note by Lord Alfred Douglas (16 Draycott Place, [London]) of a misprint in CHAR 2/127/11-12. Typescript copies at CHAR 2/127/16 & 19. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/11-12 Letter from Lord Alfred Douglas (16 Draycott Place, [London]) to Patrick Hastings vehemently attacking his conduct of the defence in Douglas's action against the Morning Post and warning that all the issues will be raised again during his action against the Jewish Guardian. Typescript copy. Other copies at CHAR 2/127/17 & 20. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/13 Letter from WSC (2 Sussex Square) to Sir Felix Schuster reporting that there was no appreciable movement in stocks on the British market in the fortnight following the Battle of Jutland and there were no dealings with British stocks on the New York Stock Exchange. Signed typescript copy. 26 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/14 Note from Sir James Masterton-Smith to Sir Felix Schuster returning a letter. 24 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/15 Typescript copies of CHAR 2/127/8 and CHAR 2/127/9. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/16 Typescript copy of CHAR 2/127/10. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/17 Another copy of CHAR 2/127/11-12. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/18 Manuscript copies of CHAR 2/127/8 and CHAR 2/127/9. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/19 Typescript copy of CHAR 2/127/10. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/20 Another copy of CHAR 2/127/11-12. 20 Jul 1923
CHAR 2/127/21 Handbill for a talk by Lord Alfred Douglas entitled "Who murdered Lord Kitchener? And the truth about Jutland." Sent with CHAR 2/127/22. 03 Aug 1923
CHAR 2/127/22 Letter from Lord Alfred Douglas (16 Draycott Place, [London]) to WSC challenging him to appear in the witness box to answer the questions Douglas will put when his against the "Jewish Guardian" is heard, enclosing CHAR 2/127/21 and reporting the results of the meeting which it advertised. 04 Aug 1923
CHAR 2/127/23 Envelope which contained CHAR 2/127/21 and CHAR 2/127/22. 04 Aug 1923
CHAR 2/127/24-25 Reprint from the Border Standard: "The murder of Lord Kitchener and the truth about the Battle of Jutland and the Jews. Speech made by Lord Alfred Douglas at the Memorial Hall, Farringdon Street, London". Another copy at CHAR 2/127/26-27. [Aug] [1923]
CHAR 2/127/26-27 Another copy of CHAR 2/127/24-25. [Aug] [1923]
CHAR 2/127/28-29 Letter from Sir Douglas Hogg [later 1st Lord Hailsham] (Haddo House, Aberdeen, [Scotland]) to WSC explaining why he does not think Lord Alfred Douglas should be prosecuted for criminal libel at present. 10 Aug [1923]
CHAR 2/127/30-31 Part of a letter from [WSC] to Lord Balfour [earlier Arthur Balfour] congratulating him on the improvement in his health, stating his determination that Lord Alfred Douglas should be proceeded against for criminal libel, and sending Balfour the second volume [of "The World Crisis"] The central part of this letter is not present. 26 Oct 1923
CHAR 2/127/32-33 Letter from Lord Balfour [earlier Arthur Balfour] (Whittingehame, Prestonkirk, Scotland) to WSC thanking him for the second volume [of "The World Crisis"] and considering the prosecution of Lord Alfred Douglas for criminal libel and Douglas's ability to pay for another action. 29 Oct 1923
CHAR 2/127/34 Letter from Sir Archibald Bodkin, Director of Public Prosecutions, to WSC (2 Sussex Square) on a forthcoming meeting with Sir Richard Muir to discuss Muir's draft indictment [of Lord Alfred Douglas]. 09 Nov 1923
CHAR 2/127/35 Letter from [WSC] to Sir Richard Muir, barrister (3 Temple Gardens, London) drawing his attention to the "improper and unjustified reference" in the Morning Post to the communiques on the Battle of Jutland. Carbon copy. 19 Nov 1923
CHAR 2/127/36 Letter from "Sunny" [9th Duke of Marlborough] (15 Great College Street, [London]) sympathising with him at having to be cross-examined and hoping that [Lord Alfred Douglas] gets sent to gaol. 13 Dec [1923]
CHAR 2/127/37 Letter from Reginald Ward Poole (Lewis and Lewis, Ely Place, Holborn, [London]) to WSC (2 Sussex Place) congratulating him for having faced the trial [of Lord Alfred Douglas] and commenting that although Douglas's sentence was inadequate "it may stop a public nuisance.". 13 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/38 Letter from Walter Augustus (The Camp, Epsom, [Surrey]) to WSC congratulating him on the conviction of [Lord Alfred Douglas]. 13 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/39 Letter from William Bennett-Dampier (Carlton Club, Pall Mall, [London]) to [WSC] attacking the speech of Cecil Hayes [defending counsel in the criminal libel trial of Lord Alfred Douglas] and congratulating him on Douglas's conviction. 13 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/40 Letter from J H Moore (Birksgate, Kirkburton, Huddersfield, [Yorkshire]) to WSC congratulating him on the restraint he showed [during the criminal libel trial of Lord Alfred Douglas]. 12 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/41 Letter from Sir Felix Cassel (Putteridge Bury, Luton, [Bedfordshire]) to WSC congratulating him on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas, thanking him for helping to clear the name of his uncle [Sir Ernest Cassel] and agreeing that it would have been better if the trial had taken place when Sir Ernest was still alive. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/42-43 Letter from G H Moore Browne (Tubber Patrick, Portstewart, [County Londonderry, Ulster, Ireland]) to [WSC] congratulating him on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas but criticising the sentence as too lenient. Praises WSC's escape from the Boers and recalls his own encounters with Lord Ronald Gower, Lord Alfred Douglas, Lord Randolph Churchill and Lady Randolph Churchill in Egypt and Italy, and the suicide of Macdonald. Hopes WSC will return to the Conservative fold. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/44 Letter from Sir William Graham Greene (Travellers' Club, Pall Mall, [London]) to WSC congratulating him on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas and attributing WSC's electoral defeats in Dundee [Angus, Scotland] and Leicester to unfair attacks on him, although Greene thinks WSC should have stood for a Manchester constituency rather than a Leicester one. Greene adds that a Labour government would be hard pressed to disprove WSC's words about them and he praises [the second volume of "The World Crisis"]. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/45 Letter from John Glynn (Caldecote, Crowborough, Sussex) to WSC congratulating him on the conviction [of Lord Alfred Douglas] and inviting him to play a round of golf. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/46 Letter from Peter Walls (21A Katrine Terrace, Arbroath Road, Eltham, [London]) to WSC congratulating him on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas and recalling his brother's reports of the attachment to WSC of the soldiers who served under him in France. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/47 Letter from 1st Lord Long of Wraxall [earlier Walter Long] (17 Ennismore Gardens, [London]) to WSC condemning the attacks made on WSC by the counsel for Lord Alfred Douglas [Cecil Hayes]. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/48 Letter from ?W R Hill (Palace Chambers, Bridge Street, Westminster, [London]) to WSC congratulating him [on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas] and sympathising with him over the attacks he suffered in the election and in court. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/49-50 Letter from [Joseph] Austen Chamberlain (2 Morpeth Mansions [London]) to WSC, sympathising on "the outrageous ordeal" to which he had been subjected [in the libel trial of Lord Alfred Douglas], and rejoicing at his complete vindication. Chamberlain marvels at the lenity of the sentence and remarks that it seemed almost insulting to congratulate WSC, but as the ways of the law were so strange, and license allowed in attacking public men was so extreme, then it was a matter for congratulation when one of them vindicated public honour, even from such vile and groundless charges. 14 Dec [1923]
CHAR 2/127/51-52 Letter from Frederick Kellaway (16 Eliot Park, Lewisham, [London]) to WSC (2 Sussex Square) congratulating him on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas, which will set an example to other potential libellers of public men, and expressing regret at WSC's election defeat in Leicester because WSC is needed in the House of Commons in the present "dark and troubled" outlook. 14 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/53 Letter from Brand Hooker (Brackenber Lodge, Sunningdale, [Berkshire]) to WSC congratulating him [on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas for criminal libel] and reporting on the poor health of "Jack". 16 Dec [1923]
CHAR 2/127/54 Letter from Dr T P Healey (45 Clarges Street, [London]) to WSC congratulating him [on the conviction of Lord Alfred Douglas for criminal libel] and conveying best wishes to Nellie Romilly [earlier Nellie Hozier]. 16 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/55 Letter from A E Auty (24 Blenheim Street, Chelsea, [London]) to [Edward Marsh] apologising for having contributed sixpence to the defence of [Lord Alfred Douglas]. 17 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/56 Letter from [Lord Balfour, earlier Arthur Balfour] (Whittinghame, Prestonkirk, [East Lothian], Scotland) to WSC sympathising with him over the libel on him by Lord Alfred Douglas, disclaiming any special part in the satisfactory outcome of the case, and expressing the fear that Stanley Baldwin's "astounding performance may injure causes even more important than the interests of the party which he leads.". 17 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/57 Letter from Randal Charlton (58 Warwick Square, Belgravia, [London]) to WSC (2 Sussex Square) referring to his (Charlton's) letter in the press on the trial of Lord Alfred Douglas and Lord Northcliffe's [earlier Sir Alfred Harmsworth] views on the war, congratulating WSC on his fortitude during the trial and expressing regret at his defeat in West Leicester. 19 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/58 Letter from [WSC] to Randal Charlton (58 Warwick Square, Belgravia, [London]) thanking him for his denial of the statement made by Lord Alfred Douglas's defence counsel, who is being criticised in legal circles. Carbon copy. 21 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/59 Letter from Sir Archibald Bodkin, Director of Public Prosecutions, to WSC stating that Sir Richard Muir did most of the work fo the prosecution in the trial of Lord Alfred Douglas,referring to an article in the Times an praising the role of Lord Balfour [earlier Arthur Balfour] in the trial. 24 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/60 Depositions of Lord Balfour [earlier Arthur Balfour] in the case of Lord Alfred Douglas versus the Morning Post. 23 Jun 1923
CHAR 2/127/61-62 Earlier draft of part of CHAR 2/127/63-82. Typescript annotated and signed by WSC. [Jun] [1923]
CHAR 2/127/63-82 Supplementary proof of evidence by WSC in the case of Lord Alfred Douglas versus the Morning Post arising from Douglas's allegation that WSC had misreported the Battle of Jutland in order to allow Jewish interests led by Sir Ernest Cassel to profit on the stock market. [Jun] [1923]
CHAR 2/127/83 Statement of claim of Lord Alfred Douglas against the Jewish Guardian Ltd and J Alexander & Co Ltd arising from the statement in the Jewish Guardian that Douglas invented "vile insults" against the Jews. 16 May 1922
CHAR 2/127/84 Defence by the Jewish Guardian Ltd and J Alexander & Co Ltd against the claim by Lord Alfred Douglas arising from the statement in the Jewish Guardian that Douglas invented "vile insults" against the Jews. 15 Jul 1922
CHAR 2/127/85 Particulars of paragraphs 3 & 4 of the statemen of the defence of the Jewish Guardian Ltd and J Alexander & Co against the claim of Lord Alfred Douglas arising from the statement in the Jewish Guardian that Douglas invented "vile insults" against the Jews. 05 Dec 1922
CHAR 2/127/86-96 Indictment of Lord Alfred Douglas for criminal libel arising from his claim that WSC misreported the Battle of Jutland to allow Jewish interests led by Sir Ernest Cassel to profit on the stock market. Typescript draft. 13 Nov 1923
CHAR 2/127/97 Compliments slip from the Director of Public Prosecutions [Sir Archibald Bodkin]. 03 Dec 1923
CHAR 2/127/98-105 Plea of justification of Lord Alfred Douglas in answer to the indictment against him for criminal libel. Carbon copy. 27 Nov 1923
CHAR 2/127/106-138 Answers by [WSC] to the points made by Lord Alfred Douglas in his plea of justification in answer to the indictment against him for criminal libel arising from his claim that WSC misreported the Battle of Jutland to allow Jewish interests led by Sir Ernest Cassel to profit on the stock market. [Nov] [1923]
CHAR 2/127/139 Page from the Times including marked article describing the naval attack in the Dardanelles as "a legitimate war gamble". [Retained in connection with the proceedings against Lord Alfred Douglas arising from his claim that WSC misreported the Battle of Jutland to allow Jewish interests led by Sir Ernest Cassel to profit on the stock market]. 14 Oct 1915
CHAR 2/127/140-144 Statement of WSC's bank account with Lloyd's Bank (Cox's Branch). [Copy made in connection with the proceedings against Lord Alfred Douglas for criminal libel arising from his claim that WSC misreported the Battle of Jutland to allow Jewish interests led by Sir Ernest Cassel to profit on the stock market]. 01 May 1916 - 13 Sep 1916
CHAR 2/127/145-149 Statement of WSC's share dealing account with Sir Ernest Cassel. [Copy sent with CHAR 2/127/1 in connection with the legal proceedings in 1923 arising from Lord Alfred Douglas's claim that WSC misreported the Battle of Jutland to allow Jewish interests led by Sir Ernest Cassel to profit on the stock market]. 1900 - 1917