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George Washington Wilson

in Edinburgh


In one of his regular 'Notes from the North' columns in the British Journal of Photography, in 1875, J Nicol described one of George Washington Wilson's visits to Edinburgh.  He wrote:

"During the past few weeks, the citizens of "Auld Reekie" [Edinburgh] have been "much exercised" by the appearance of  a new style of cab which was being driven about in various parts of the city, and stopping from time to time in some of the most unlikely places if the picking up of "fares" were the driver's object.

In general outline, it was not unlike an ordinary cab, but instead of a door and a window at each side windows only were there, the door being at the back;  and altogether there was a lightness about the turn-out that could not fail to attract observation.

As usual, opinions differed widely as to what it really was, but the experienced photographic eye could hardly fail to detect a photographic appearance about it inducing a desire to make the acquaintance of its owner.

This was not a difficult thing to accomplish, for any one who chose to watch the vehicle for a short time soon recognised the jolly, genial, good-natured face of George Washington Wilson, of Aberdeen, emerge from round the corner, with his slide under his arm, and at once perceive that he had, for a time at least, abandoned the little tent in which, on his knees, he had so long worshipped at the photographic shrine.

To get into a chat on his favourite art with "GWW" is the easiest possible matter;  for although he is really a busy man, he is never in a hurry, and is always ready and wiling to give a bit of advice or enjoy a little fun.

The new dark room must, to a man like him, be of immense advantage - in the saving of time, if of nothing else - as whenever he has exposed his plate, he can jump in, inform the driver from whence the next picture is to be taken, and carry on the process of development while the journey is in progress.

Mr Wilson spent some weeks in Edinburgh, and already we have the result in a volume, very recently published, of "Edinburgh and its Surroundings", which just appears in the nick of time, when tourists do most abound.

Of the merits of the pictures, I need say nothing, as it is probable the Editors may find the volume on the "editorial table".

All who are acquainted with Mr Wilson's work - and I suppose that includes every man and woman of culture in the country - will easily understand that, both as regards technical excellence and pictorial selection, every picture is a perfect gem.

[BJP: 23 June 1875, p.357]


G W Wilson


GWW in Edinburgh

Photos and Albums

Post Cards

Photo: Burns Monument

Photo: Princes Street

Photo:  Dean Bridge

Lantern Slide

Stereo Views - List

Stereo Views - Thumbnails

GWW's Instantaneous Views:      Comparison of photos      Location

All Stereo Views:         Background        List of Publishers        Thumbnails