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PSS Exhibitors

GW Wilson

1st PSS Exhibition - December 1856

  • George Washington Wilson exhibited landscapes.

2nd PSS Exhibition - December 1857

  • George Washington Wilson exhibited landscapes.

3rd PSS Exhibition - December 1858

  • George Washington Wilson exhibited photographs.

  • One of the critics of Lyndon Smith's work was George Washington Wilson of Aberdeen.  He called for PSS to give clearer guidance for future exhibitions:

4th PSS Exhibition - December 1859

  • GW Wilson's entered six frames of photographs.  All were views.  One of the frames was described as instantaneous views.  Another consisted of six studies of evening effects on the Loch of Park, Aberdeen.

He sold many photographs at this exhibition.  The prices were very modest.  He sold 40 small views at 10d each, but had to work hard for his £1 13s 4d.    

He wrote:

“Owing to an accidental contamination of the printing chemicals, I find the views printed for you so bad in colour that I could not let them out of my hands.”  [Letter from GW Wilson to PSS:  10 March 1860]

Then he wrote:

“I am exceedingly annoyed to find that the views which I had ready for you yesterday have been pilfered off my counter, and having only a dozen left (of those you want) I am unable to send you the whole.”
[Letter from GW Wilson to PSS:  15 March 1860]

"There are two or three copies not quite so good as I should have wished but our hurry just now has prevented the getting that personal attention which these things require" 


George Washington Wilson

The sudden death of George Washington Wilson was announced in Photography on 16 Mar 1883.  The journal referred to him as

"... one of the veterans of photography in Scotland, and a photographer whose name is known all over the world."

The journal reported that GW Wilson had been:

-  was born in Alvah, Banffshire.

-  was appointed a joiner in his native parish.

-  did a good deal of portrait painting.

-  studied at the Academy schools in Edinburgh.

-  studied at the Royal Academy School in London.

-  received lessons from the miniature portrait painter, Mr Corbould.

-  returned to Aberdeen, intending to take up portrait painting.

-  constructed several remarkably good lenses, with which he carried out a series of very interesting experiments.

-  entered in to partnership as a miniature portrait painter with Mr Hay

-  experimented with stereoscopic photography.

-  was the first person to photograph the Queen and Prince Consort at Old Balmoral, and returned frequently to take more photographs.

-  was commissioned by Emperor Frederick to paint a series of sketches of  Deeside scenery.

-  commenced business as a photographer at 25 Crown Street, Aberdeen

-  travelled to Braemar, the Trossachs, the Falls of Clyde and many of the wilder parts of Scotland.

-  became a director of the Opera House Company and Aberdeen Music Hall and of the Aberdeen Market Company.

-  ceased, in recent years, to take a leading role in his photographic business, but returned to painting, producing oil portraits of several of his old friends.

GW Wilson saw the expansion of his business, and converted his business into a limited company, the negotiations being concluded on the date of his death.

He was survived by his widow, four daughters and five sons, three of whom worked for his business.

[Photography:  16 Mar 1893]