By George Beccaloni
"Treeps" was Wallace's wife Annie's family home in Hurstpierpoint, Sussex - her father being William Mitten, who was a pharmacist and a respected amateur botanist. Wallace and Annie moved to Treeps in mid 1867 in order that Annie's mother and sisters could help look after their newly born baby Bertie (Herbert Spencer, b. 22 June) and also so that Wallace could work on his now famous book The Malay Archipelago - which he largely wrote whilst living there.
Treeps from the back painted by Annie Wallace. Courtesy of Richard Wallace
Sadly, Bertie was to die at Treeps about six years later (in 1874) after a long illness. Wallace and Annie lived in Treeps until mid 1868 and I'm sure Wallace was a frequent visitor after that time since the Mitten family lived in Treeps until William Mitten died.
Raby (2001) describes Treeps as follows: "[the house] stands on a ridge on the south side of the village street, and the land falls away sharply into steep meadows, so that the view from the garden looks over a lush green valley to the line of the south downs."
Treeps from the road. Copyright Elizabeth Raby
The front of Treeps in 2005. Copyright Janet Beccaloni
The Treeps plaque
A plaque was unveiled on the garden wall of Treeps on Saturday 24th September 2005. After the unveiling a reception was held at Danny House, where Peter Raby, Richard Wallace and I gave short talks.
Treeps plaque in 2005. Copyright Janet Beccaloni
Richard & John Wallace beside plaque in 2005. Copyright Janet Beccaloni
The Wallace Fund would like to thank Peter Raby for suggested having a plaque on Treeps and for organised for it to be produced. We also thank the owners of Danny House for allowing us to have the reception there and the owners of Treeps, Tim and Alison Mould, for allowing the plaque to be installed on their garden wall!