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FOWNC Newsletter No 50. May 2004. Free to members. Price £1.00 to non-members
Chairman's Report - Bob Flanagan
There is again progress to report in the cemetery thanks to the efforts of Lambeth Council and project manager Jill O'Meara. The new signage is being inserted and we at last have our own noticeboard just inside the cemetery. The new path and roadway signs will begin to appear soon. The temporary roof over the catacombs is dependent on planning permission, ut should be in place by the Autumn. Hopefully issues surrounding the relocation of dedicated roses in the rose garden will have been resolved satisfactorily and with due attention to the wishes of all concerned by then. The latest suggestion is to rededicate roses in the existing memorial garden and to re-landscape the area at the same time. This will have the further advantage of giving disable access to the rose garden, a Council priority.
The restoration of Douglas Jerrold's tombstone is awaiting delivery of the cap-stone from the quarry, but the tomb of Joseph Maudsley has been carefully restored as evidenced by the accompanying illustration. Elsewhere tasteful name plaques have been placed on some restored vaults along Ship Path and some elegant tombs hae been revealed by scrub clearance at the top of this path (see illustrations).
Finally I would like to extend a warm welcome to the new Archdeacon of Lambeth, the Venerable Chris Skilton, his predecessor Nick Baines having been appointed Bishop of Croydon. We trust Chris will enjoy his time as Archdeacon and that he will continue to see the fruits of the efforts of his predecessors and of the Council, FOWNC, and others in transforming and improving the cemetery.
The newly restored tombstone of Joseph Maudsley (1801-1861) and family (grave 4,361, square 77)
An example of a name plaque placed on a restored brick vault
Some newly-revealed tombs at the top of Ship Path
This is the web site of SCENE, a project carried on by Bologna City Council (as leader), Ljubljana City Council, the Cemeteries Administration in the City of Stockholm and the Department of Cultural Heritage Protection of Lithuania with the support of the European Commission within the Culture 2000 Programme framework.
Visiting this site will give information about the main activities of SCENE:
Lambeth Picture Archives on the Internet
In December last year, Lambeth Archives launched their picture collection on the internet, and already 5,000 images (out of a total of around 30,000) can now be viewed and copies ordered on line. The images may be searched via various categories - person, place, subject, or local government ward - and once one has got used to the system it is very user-friendly. The pictures have been collected by Lambeth Archives over many years, and it has sometimes been difficult to identify exactly what they show. Lambeth Archives will welcome help from members in correcting any that have been wrongly identified. You may see the collection at: www.lambethlandmark.com.
An Appeal for Help
The London Archive Users' Forum is looking for new volunteers to give a couple of hours a week at Guildhall Library to entering data for LAUF's 'Place in the Sun' project, which has already put details of more than 50,000 Sun Fire Office insurance policies from the early 19th century online on www.a2a.org.uk.
More details from: Isobel Watson, Project co-ordinator, London Archive Users' Forum 'Place in the Sun' project, 29 Stepney Green London E1 3JX. Tel: 020 7791 2661. For further details of the indexing project visit: www.londonarchiveusers.org.uk. For guidance in using the 'Place in the Sun' online index, visit: www.history.ac.uk/gh/sun.htm.
Alice Julia Burville (Mrs John Crook) (1856-1944) by Bob Flanagan
Our Newsletter No. 45, Sept 2002 (http://www.fownc.org/newsletters/no45.shtml) contains an article about John Crook and his wife Alice. We thought there was no photograph of Alice. However, Keith Sharp has written to point out that a photo of Alice is available on the website maintained by David Stone that details Who Was Who In The D'Oyly Carte Opera Company (1875-1982): http://math.boisestate.edu/gas/whowaswho/index.htm. There are several other musical connections with the cemetery including Alfred Cellier and John Furneaux Cook that are detailed on this site. This is David's entry on Alice:
Alice Julia Burville's career as a singer was launched in 1874 when she appeared at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in an operetta, Ten of 'Em, by Suppé. She next performed at the Charing Cross, Criterion, and Gaiety Theatres in London before going on tour. Returning to London, she appeared in Der Fledermaus and Orphée aux Enfers at the Alhambra before touring America, with Lydia Thompson, in 1877 in such roles as Fatima in Blue Beard and Polly Hopkins in Robinson Crusoe.
She returned to London in January 1878 in an Offenbach opera at the Philhamonic. Later that year, she joined Carte's Comedy-Opera Company at the Opéra Comique in the chorus and playing Lady Viola in the curtain raiser The Spectre Knight. She also understudied Emma Howson as Josephine in H.M.S. Pinafore and took over that role for a time in August 1878, again in February 1879, and once more in August or September 1879 after the rift with the Directors resulted in the renaming of the Company as Mr. D'Oyly Carte's Opera Company. In October 1879 she played Josephine yet again, this time on tour with Mr. D'Oyly Carte's "First 'Pinafore' Company."
Miss Burville then left the D'Oyly Carte, returning to Drury Lane as Clairette in La Fille de Madame Angot in 1880, but was back in the D'Oyly Carte fold the following year. This time she appeared in America as Arabella Lane with Carte's First American Billee Taylor Company (February to April 1881), and later (September to October 1881) as the Lady Angela with Carte's New York Patience cast at the Standard Theatre.
She returned to London where she appeared as Fiametta in Suppé's Boccaccio (Comedy, 1882). Thereafter she appeared primarily in the provinces. She was last seen in Offenbach's Geneviere de Brabant in Leicester in December 1893.
Miss Burville was in 1876 married for a brief time to Savoyard W.H. Denny.
Figure. Alice Burville as Arabella Lane in Billee Taylor, 1881 (reproduced by courtesy of David Stone)
The Grave of Katti Lanner by Andrew Lamb
The south London suburb of Norwood provides a reminder not only of the elder Johann Strauss in the former Royal Beulah Spa in Upper Norwood, but also one of Joseph Lanner. This latter is in Norwood Cemetery, one of London's great 19th century cemeteries. Opened in 1837, it is there that one can find the grave of Lanner's eldest child, Katti.
Katti was born Katharina Josefa Lanner in Vienna on 14 September 1829. She became a celebrated ballet mistress and choreographer in London, her career being admirably described by Ivor Guest in his book Ballet in Leicester Square. Essentially her career was divided into three parts, of which the first was her Viennese training under the Imperial Court ballet masters Pietro Campilli and Isidore Carey, followed by her early days as a dancer of the Court Opera at the Kärntnertor-Theater.
Then, after the deaths of her mother and her 21-year-old brother August in 1855, Katti Lanner set off on her travels. These took her to Berlin, Dresden, Munich and, for four years from 1862, the Stadt-Theater in Hamburg. It was during her time there that she branched out into choreography, presumably while unable to dance because of the births of her three daughters. After Hamburg she toured Scandinavia and Russia, and in 1869 she became ballet director at the Grand-Théâtre, Bordeaux. With her 'Viennese Ballet Company' she was then engaged in New York in 1870, and at the Teatro São Carlos in Lisbon for the 1870-71 season.
It was in 1871 that she was first engaged in London, by Colonel J. H. Mapleson as ballet mistress for his opera seasons at Drury Lane Theatre. During the summer of 1871 she appeared in Baden-Baden, and during the following winter she was in Belgium during the winter, before making her début at the Théâtre Italien in Paris in 1872. After a short stay in Copenhagen, she made a second visit to New York in 1873, and for two years toured America.
Then, in 1875, she was re-engaged by Colonel Mapleson for the opera ballets at Drury Lane. She was to remain in London for the final 30-odd years of her life, initially also directing ballets for the Carl Rosa Opera Company and for open-air performances at the Crystal Palace. In 1877 she became director of the National Training School of Dancing, established by Mapleson in Tottenham Court Road. In 1878 she made her last appearance as a ballerina before retiring to concentrate on choreography.
The climax of Katti Lanner's career in London began in 1887, when the Empire Theatre in Leicester Square reopened as a theatre of varieties, with spectacular ballets forming a standard part of an evening's programme. It was there that she found her longest-lasting role. Before her retirement in 1907, she choreographed no fewer than 36 ballets. She also set up her own dancing academy at 40 North Side, Clapham Common.
Katti Lanner's readiness to settle in London from 1875 doubtless owed something to a private life that was no less complicated than that of other members of the Lanner and Strauss dynasties. Ivor Guest tells us that it was in Hamburg in February 1864 that she married a fellow ballet-dancer, Johann Alfred Geraldini, who became director of Katti Lanner's Viennese Ballet Company. However, the marriage was not a happy one, and Geraldini returned to Vienna, where he ran a ticket agency until his death in 1904.
By the time she settled in London, Katti Lanner's life was more closely linked to the Neapolitan dancer Giuseppe Venuto de Francesco. It was to his Alberich that she had danced Giselle in the performances of Adolphe Adam's classic ballet in New York in 1870 and London in 1871 that represented the high point of her career as a ballerina. In the 1881 census we find Katti Lanner at 49 Lansdowne Gardens, South Lambeth with Giuseppe de Francesco's 84-year-old mother Anna.
To what extent Katti Lanner's daughters Katharina, Albertina and Sofia lived with her in London is unclear. Katherina junior followed her mother into ballet until she left the stage after marrying a man named Audibert and settled in Constantinople. Joseph Lanner's biographer Fritz Lange tells us that Sofia toured north and south America as a harpist, worked in New Orleans and in leading Parisian orchestras, and was for a time with C. M. Ziehrer's orchestra in Vienna before marrying Jacques Becker, a bandmaster in Groningen, Holland.
Of more immediate interest to our story is the middle daughter, Albertina, who had early pretensions as an actress. On 14 September 1881, at 22 Thorne Road, South Lambeth, she gave birth to a daughter named Clara Albertina Katie, who was then brought up not by her single mother but by Katti Lanner and Giuseppe de Venuto. Even when Albertina settled in Stuttgart with a husband named Kiess and a son named Alexander, Clara remained with her grandmother in Lambeth.
After the death of Giuseppe de Venuto's mother Anna in 1887 at the age of 90, this unconventional household expanded with another young girl, Cora de Mere. Four years older than Clara, Cora was born in Bordeaux and was presumably known to Katti from her time in that city. Evidently Cora came to London to further her ballet ambitions, for, as 'Mlle Cora', she appeared in Empire theatre ballets from 1891 to 1904.
Now based at 183 Clapham Road, Lambeth, the constitution of the household was upset again in 1892, when Giuseppe de Venuto died aged 54. He was buried in the same grave in Norwood Cemetery as his mother, and it was there that Katti Lanner was later to join him. The grave is still in good condition, marked by a stone cross and with de Venuto's first name misspelled 'Guiseppe'. In his will, Giuseppe de Venuto made generous provision for Clara Geraldini, whom he described as his goddaughter.
After Giuseppe's death, Katti Lanner settled afresh at 40 North Side, Clapham Common, where she founded the ballet school that continued to provide the nucleus of the Empire ballet. Her companionship now came not only from the two girls but from her pets, which in 1893 included five cats. Already well into her sixties, she was very much the grande dame of London ballet and evidently a formidable character. Of her traditional appearances at Empire Theatre first nights in her final years, H. G. Hibbert wrote as follows:
The impression of eccentricity was reinforced by the recollection of the ballerina Phyllis Bedells, who danced in Katti Lanner's ballet The Débutante in 1907, when Katti was 77:-
I can see her now, sitting in the prompt corner, yelling at the corps de ballet if she saw the slightest defect in their work or if they were out of line, not realizing that she could be heard by the audience out in front.
Katti lived on only a little longer, dying at 40 North Side, Clapham Common on the morning of 15 November 1908. Her funeral was attended by many of her professional dancing colleagues and pupils. A 'Miss Lanner', a daughter, was among those reported as present, and one poignant fact was reported by The Era:
Katti Lanner's will provides further evidence of her autocratic, eccentric nature. Of epic proportions, it was drawn up originally in 1897, and had two subsequent codicils. She makes specific bequests of jewellery and cash to her three daughters and to Albertina's two children. Originally she included her husband in the bequests, demonstrating that they remained on friendly terms, and originally she left her home and the residue of her estate to Clara with the proviso that she use the name 'Lanner'. In the first codicil, however, Clara's interest is reduced 'in consequence of her heartless ingratitude and disobedient conduct in (among other things) marrying one John Parry against my express wish and desire'.
Thus it was finally Cora de Mere who was given the use and occupation of the home. Katti decreed that this was 'subject to the said Cora de Mere assuming the name of Lanner and taking my pets and also defraying all the necessary expenses of keeping in good order my grave and also the graves of my late father my brother and of the late Signor de Francesco'. Cora duly obliged and, under the name of Lanner, continued the dancing academy on North Side, Clapham Common for a further twenty years or so.
Sources: The Era, November 1908. Fritz Lange: Josef Lanner und Johann Strauß (Leipzig, 1913). HG Hibbert: Fifty Years of a Londoner's Life (London, 1916). Phyllis Bedells: My Dancing Days (London, 1954). Ivor Guest: Ballet in Leicester Square (London, 1992). Bob Flanagan: West Norwood Cemetery's Music Hall (Norwood, 1998)
Joseph Towne (1808-1879) by Bob Flanagan
Joseph Towne was born on 25 November 1808, the third of five surviving sons of Thomas Towne. Thomas (1793-1830) was a Congregational minister in Royston who also kept a School in what was known as 'Towne's Yard'. Thomas Towne exhibited paintings at the Royal Academy and published articles on the art of painting on velvet and on the camera obscura. As a young child, Joseph modeled animals (including a miniature monkey) and with the encouragement of his father became a pupil of W. Behnes, a distinguished sculptor. Aged 17 using drawings and such specimens of human bones obtainable, he modeled a wax miniature of a human skeleton.
In 1826 the Royal Society for Arts was offering a gold and silver medal for the best anatomical wax model. Aged 19, Joseph headed for London with his skeleton and decided to seek authentication for its accuracy. He visited Dr Thomas Davies and Dr RC Headington on 17 February 1826 and the following day Richard Grainger, Lecturer in Anatomy and Physiology at Guy's and head of the private School of Anatomy in Webb Street, where Joseph's cousin Alexander Towne was studying to gain his MRCS. Grainger sent Joseph to Mr (later Sir) Astley Cooper, Senior Surgeon at Guy's Hospital, who wrote 'I have examined the model of the skeleton made by Mr. Joseph Towne of which I approve - Astley Cooper - February 20th, 1826'. Cooper then sent Joseph to see Benjamin Harrison, the Treasurer of Guy's, who engaged Joseph as Modeler to the hospital and Guy's Medical School, which had opened the previous year.
The model of the miniature skeleton won Joseph the silver medal of the Royal Society of Arts in 1826 - the following year he won the gold with a series of 3 models of the brain in wax. Joseph was provided with a Modeling Room in the basement at Guy's, to which he possessed the only key. He was paid partly by the hospital and partly by the school until 1853, when the school paid all of his salary. It is believed that he was paid per model, but also received a retainer of £200 per annum.
He remained at this post for 53 years, during which time he constructed over 100 anatomical models copied from dissections by John Hilton and nearly 1000 dermatology models, copied from patients sent to him primarily by Thomas Addison, founder of the Dermatology Department at Guy's, and by Charles Hilton Fagge. Towne also worked in marble and the Medical School at Guy's (now part of King's College) possesses a number of these marble busts, including those of his mentor Astley Cooper, Thomas Addison, and William Babbington. The Museum also possess a sketch wax model of the Duke of Wellington, John Gray, and a wax copy of the Bacon Monument to Thomas Guy, the original of which is in the Chapel at Guy's.
In 1838, Joseph's younger brother Elihu (who was also an anatomical modeler living in Maze Pond, near Guy's) was appointed to a Medical College at Abuzabol, Cairo (built by Mohamed Ali and established by the French surgeon Clot-Bey). Tragically Elihu died en-route to the small village of Abuzabol.
Joseph was described as a strange man - he never liked to have anyone around when he worked as he was afraid of dust. An Italian plaster mixer called Francis and William Brock (a model) were his only assistants. Joseph always wore a cloth over his head when applying the colours.
There are other Norwood connections in this story. John Hilton (1804-1878) was surgeon to Guy's Hospital, 1849-70 and Professor of Human Anatomy and Surgery at the College of Surgeons, 1860-2. He was elected president of the college in 1867. He was appointed Surgeon Extraordinary to Queen Victoria in 1867. A Fellow of the Royal Society, he died on 14 September 1878. His grave at Norwood (grave 17,174, square 91) is marked by a simple horizontal stone, but is inaccessible at the moment.
Charles Hilton Fagge (1838-1883), gained his MD in London in 1863 and became a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians in 1870. He was a prominent Physician at Guy's and nephew of John Hilton. He became demonstrator of morbid anatomy, lecturer on pathology. and curator of the Gordon Museum, Guy's Hospital. He wrote Principles and Practice of Medicine, a large and famous book which occupied his energies for the best part of 12 years. It was re-edited through four editions by his younger colleague, PH Pye-Smith. He took over skin care at Guy's in 1867 and was regarded as a critical dermatologist with 'one of the most dynamic minds of the age'. He catalogued the fine collection of Towne's wax moulages. As with Towne, his grave at Norwood (grave 19,889, square 21) is now unmarked.
Figure 1. Joseph Towne (self-portrait) (courtesy the Gordon Museum, Kings College London)
Figure 2. Model by Joseph Towne of head and neck exhibited at the Great Exhibition, 1851
Figure 3. John Hilton (1804-1878) (courtesy the Gordon Museum, Kings College London)
Figure 4. Charles Hilton Fagge (1838-1883) (courtesy the Gordon Museum, Kings College London)
Book Review - Bob Flanagan
London's Necropolis. A Guide to Brookwood Cemetery by John M. Clarke. Sutton, 2004. £30.00. Hardback, 320 pp, 100 b+w illustrations.
John Clarke is well-known for his long-term efforts to preserve what remains of Brookwood Cemetery and for his book on the Brookwood Necropolis Railway. This new book brings together the results of his work on the cemetery over the last 20 years will I'm sure prove equally popular. In 1850 the idea of a great metropolitan cemetery, situated in the suburbs and large enough to contain all of London's dead for an indefinite period, was promoted. The outcome was Brookwood Cemetery, the largest burial ground in the world when it was opened in 1854 by the London Necropolis & Mausoleum Company. The cemetery, which now contains almost 240,000 burials, is still privately owned and administered - and a draft report by the Home Office suggests that it has the potential to become a World Heritage Site. London's Necropolis is a guide to the art and architecture of Brookwood, and also includes brief biographies of over 800 individuals of interest who have been buried here - reflecting all levels of society. It is hoped to be able to provide a more detailed review of the book in due course.
Book Review - Paul Graham
Palace of the People. The Crystal Palace at Sydenham 1854-1936 by J.R. Piggott. Hurst & Co, 2004. £22.50. Paperback, 230 pp, 50 colour plates + 110 b+w illustrations.
This book has been published to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the opening of the Crystal Palace at Sydenham. Publication coincided with an exhibition at the Dulwich Gallery that ran until 18th April. It is an erudite, lavishly illustrated work that will appeal to anyone interested in the art, architecture, and design of the Crystal Palace. The illustrations are evocative, not just of the remarkable contents of the Palace, but of the men who built it, and of the men, women and children who visited it.
The Palace erected at Sydenham was twice the size of the original at Hyde Park. The Times was of the opinion that: 'it so far transcends the original as to make us rather ashamed of having admired the first Palace'. The most controversial aspect of the new Palace was the polychromatic colour scheme adopted throughout by Owen Jones, the Director of the displays. His use of primary colours to decorate the courts recreating ancient civilizations was too garish for many. The twin aims of the Palace, as enunciated by the Queen during her inauguration speech in June 1854, were 'to elevate and instruct, as well as to delight and amuse'. These aims were not always compatible. The early opinion of The Builder was that the Palace 'may be the most powerful educational institution in the world'. By the turn of the century however, the need to make money and provide less esoteric attractions for paying visitors had meant that the high aspirations of the founders for the Palace to be an 'illustrated encyclopaedia' had been eclipsed. In 1908 The Times, originally so complimentary, believed that the values of the art and architecture had been 'overshadowed by the reputation of the Palace as a resort for fireworks, football and other avocations'.
Hiram Maxim (1840-1916) (grave 34,481, square 124) was one agent of this 'dumbing down' process at the Palace. In 1904 a rosery, a wrought iron structure standing on a high mound of roses, was demolished and replaced by 'an extraordinary fairground and engineering contraption called the Flying Machine'. Designed by Maxim, it whirled paying visitors around at speed in gondolas, one of which appears in a photograph crammed full of children waving to the camera and blissfully unaware of any rudimentary health and safety considerations. Mr Piggott is elegiac for the lost idealism: 'gone for ever were the delicate stasis and geometric symmetries of Jones's arches on the Mound of Roses and all that they stood for'.
Music was always an important feature at the Palace. On 18 June 1856, when the Queen arrived to see Paxton's garden fountains switched on, Augustus Manns (1825-1907) (grave 31,828, square 81) conducted a German band playing the William Tell overture. He was also to conduct the band during Blondin's hire wire feats of 1861, which included cooking an omelette at altitude. Manns was the Director of the Crystal Palace band and became a national figure through his work to educate the public in new musical works. The English taste for Brahms and Berlioz is attributed to Manns' efforts. In 1877 Franz Liszt was present to see Manns conduct his work, and continually leapt up to shake his hand. Manns took over the Handel festival of 1883 at short notice and made it the most successful ever. Manns was a conspicuous figure with his mane of grey hair, seen to advantage here in a reproduction of a Spy cartoon from Vanity Fair in 1895.
The sermon preached at the Palace by Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834-1892) (grave 24,395, square 38) on 7 October 1857 as part of national 'Humiliation Day' following the Indian Mutiny, is described as 'a national event'. With no means of amplification, Spurgeon addressed an audience of 23,654; the largest ever assembled to hear a sermon. Spurgeon slept for the three days following. Mr Piggott records that:
At a rehearsal the day before, (Spurgeon) had tried his voice inside the Palace by declaiming 'Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin of the world', and a workman, thinking it was a voice from Heaven, went home and repented'.
As is to be expected, the text is replete with reference to many other luminaries who found their last resting-place at Norwood. Douglas Jerrold is given credit for coining the phrase 'Crystal Palace' in Punch, athough a possibly earlier citation in the Illustrated London News is identified. William Cubitt was on the Building Committee and originally proposed Battersea Park as his preferred site before the location known as 'the English Tyrol', next to Norwood and close to the resort of Beulah Hill, was selected. George Myers was responsible for the roads and masonry. When Napoleon III and Empress Eugenie visited in April 1855, they dined in an elegant saloon in the Italian style, with panels of green silk and arabesques, designed by J.G. Crace. Crace also designed the Stationery Court at the Palace, dedicated to the arts of paper and printing, which is the subject of a black and white illustration. The Birmingham Court was by Sir William Tite, architect of the cemetery. David Roberts was amongst the artists whose works were exhibited. Arthur Anderson, Chairman of P&O, also became Chairman of the Crystal Palace Company and was responsible for introducing the Museum of Naval Architecture there. W.F. Woodington sculpted the monumental head of Joseph Paxton still to be found in the park. Gideon Mantell was represented by Waterhouse Hawkins' models of iguanodon, amongst the other extinct animals recreated in the park.
Mr Piggott dispels the myth that the Palace was always in dire financial straights. He points out that under the careful management of Sir Henry Buckland in the 1920s and 30s its fortunes revived, only to be finally destroyed in the cataclysmic fire of 1936. It's legacy, according to Mr Piggott, is the rise of television, prefabricated buildings, shopping malls, theme parks, mass entertainments and pop concerts; an impressive, if not entirely creditable, progeny.
A view of the Imperial War Museum at the Crystal Palace in the 1920s
Review of Recent FOWNC Events - Jill Dudman
On 21 February we were treated to a double bill by Margaret Jackman, a founder member and the first secretary of FOWNC. During a holiday in Australia about a year ago, she pursued two lines of interest. She visited two cemeteries, White Hills and Bendigo, a short distance north of Melbourne, and took a number of slides. Both cemeteries date from the 1850s, and contain graves of many people involved in gold mining; White Hills is particularly notable for a large number of Chinese people employed, and also has a memorial to the women who supported the Gold Rush pioneers. Bendigo has a memorial to Robert Burke and William Wills, who made the first crossing of the Australian continent in 1861, but died in the outback on the return journey. All the views looked very spacious; one cemetery claims room for 40,000 more burials! Margaret also visited the New South Wales Art Gallery in Sydney, where she saw two paintings, The Marriage at Cana of Galilee and St Catherine of Alexandria, by Adelaide Ironside (1831-1867), the first female Australian artist to study in Europe and buried at Norwood (grave 11,836, square 77). Sadly, from talking with art experts there, she reports that Adelaide is apparently largely unknown in Australia today. Finally, while sightseeing in Melbourne, Margaret was very pleased to see, in excellent condition in Fitzroy Gardens, the model village made by a Norwood man and presented by Lambeth in thanks for food parcels sent during the Second World War.
On 20 March the FOWNC chairman, Bob Flanagan, gave a talk based on his professional expertise as a toxicologist. One of the more notorious Victorian poisoning cases was that of Adelaide Bartlett, who was tried in 1886 for murdering her husband Edwin with chloroform. As a background, Bob gave a history of chloroform and its effects on the body by inhalation or ingestion. Sir Thomas Stevenson (1838-1908), one of this country's leading forensic scientists in the late 19th century and buried at Norwood (grave 26,543, square 95), appeared as expert witness at the trial, and Bob discussed his writings in his case books, apparently never published nor studied by the numerous authors who have produced books on this case. The central problem in this case was that a large amount of chloroform was found in Edwin's stomach, but there was no conclusive evidence as to how it came to be there. Had Edwin drunk it to commit suicide or accidentally overdosed, or had Adelaide deliberately poisoned him? In the end, Adelaide was given the benefit of the doubt and acquitted. Bob concluded by discussing a recent case he had worked on where the same problem of how chloroform came to present in large amount in the liver, and thereby by implication in the stomach, had been raised in evidence.
Forthcoming FOWNC Events - May-August 2004
General tours will be held on the first Sunday of each month (2 May, 6 June, 4 July and 1 August). All tours (including the special tour below) start at 14.30, at the Cemetery main gate off Norwood Road, and last for about 2 hours. There is no formal charge but we welcome donations of £1 per person (£0.50 concessions) towards conservation projects.
Sunday 20 June: Special Tour - Conservation in the cemetery - Don Bianco
In the past few years a large number of monuments have been repaired or more substantially restored, thanks mainly to a considerable financial commitment from Lambeth Council. The English Heritage architect involved in the work will be pointing out some of the achievements.
Other forthcoming events
Saturday 15 May, 11.00-17.00: Nunhead Cemetery Open Day
Nunhead Cemetery, SE15. A very popular annual event by the Friends of Nunhead Cemetery.
Saturday 5 & Sunday 6 June, 11.00-17.00: Crystal Palace 150th Anniversary Weekend
Crystal Palace Park, SE19. A celebration of the re-opening of the Crystal Palace building, re-erected after the Great Exhibition, at Sydenham in June 1854. Victorian and Edwardian funfair, brass bands, guided walks, and much more, by the Crystal Palace Foundation and Park Rangers.
Sunday 4 July, 11.00-17.00: Kensal Green Cemetery and West London Crematorium Open Day. A major annual attraction.
Saturday 17 & Sunday 18 July: Lambeth Country Show
Brockwell Park, SE24. Another very popular annual event by Lambeth Council.
Saturday 31 July, 10.30-17.00: Brompton Cemetery Open Day. Old Brompton Road, London SW10. The finest Victorian cemetery architecture in London and a chance to visit the chapel and catacombs.
Ideally, the FOWNC bookstall and display should be present at all these events, but great manpower commitment is required. Each day needs at least half a dozen people willing to put in some heavy physical work from about 9.00 onwards, carrying bags of books, display stand, tables, chairs, etc, and erecting a gazebo, as well as staffing the stall all day in shifts, and finally dismantling and packing up. We have therefore declined invitations to all of these, but if anyone would be willing to help in another year, please contact Jill Dudman.
FOWNC Committee - May 2004
Chairman & Publications Officer:
Bob Flanagan, 79 Durban Road, London SE27 9RW (Tel: 020 8670 3265)
General Secretary & Tours Organiser:
Jill Dudman, 119 Broxholm Road, London SE27 0BJ (Tel: 020 8670 5456)
George Young, 12 Swinburne Court, Denmark Hill, London SE5 8EP (Tel: 020 7274 5267)
Rosemary Comber, 63 Bradley Road, London SE19 3NT (Tel: 020 8653 2741)
Paul Graham, Flat 4, 9 St Andrews Road, Surbiton, Surrey KT6 4DT (Tel: 020 8287 6976)
James Slattery-Kavanagh, Quotes, 20A Camden Hill Road, London SE19 1NR (Tel: 020 8766 8822)
The FOWNC Newsletter is published three times a year by the Friends of West Norwood Cemetery, 79 Durban Road, London SE27 9RW.
Registered Charity No 1063450. Member of the National Federation of Cemetery Friends
Website: http://www.fownc.org, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
If you would like further information about the Friends, please contact the Membership Secretary (address above). The annual subscription is £3. Copyright FOWNC, January 2004.
West Norwood Cemetery is one of the metropolitan cemeteries founded to deal with the expanding population of London in the early 19th century. It was opened in 1837. It has 65 Grade II and Grade II* listed monuments and includes memorials to Mrs Beeton, Sir Henry Doulton, Dr William Marsden, Baron Julius de Reuter, Charles Spurgeon and Sir Henry Tate.