1941. Robert Southey to [John Wilson Croker], 27 July 1811 *
July 27. 1811.
My dear Sir
There are two or three houses in Keswick in which such a party as Mr Crokers  may be accommodated, – according to the style of Keswick accommodations, – what that is you can report: – the apartments which you occupied are the best in Keswick, but old Mr Crossthwaite’s  (to which your brother  removed) is a more desirable situation, & there are more rooms there, tho the rooms are smaller. It is uncertain whether these may be vacant, – if I can be of any service to Mr Croker in ascertaining this, & securing lodgings, provided they are to be had, – he has only to command me.
The best mode of entering the land of Lakes is to cross the sands from Lancaster, go to the head of Coniston Water, from thence to the Ferry upon Windermere, cross to Bowness, & so by Low-wood Inn & Ambleside to Keswick. Keswick is undoubtedly the best place for head-quarters. I fear I shall not reach home till the last week in August, – but I hope Mr Croker will do me the favour to consider my library as at his service, – just as if I were upon the spot.
Yrs very truly
 Possibly the family of Peter Crosthwaite (1735–1808), a retired naval commander, publisher of maps and inventor of the aeolian harp. In the 1780s he established the first museum in Keswick. Its treasures included a set of musical stones, a stuffed albatross and a pig with no legs. By 1811 the Museum was run by his son Daniel (c. 1776–1847), a portrait painter. BACK