BELLAIRS, Walford Thomas (1794-1850)
Richmond Hill, Grenada. Original signed pencil and wash drawing, titled in pencil 'Richmond Hill Grenada July 1850'
Grenada, West Indies: 1850. Pencil and wash on paper, signed in ink lower right 'W.T. Bellairs R.N.', inscribed in pencil at top of image. Sheet size: 7 x 10 3/4 inches.
An important view from the harbour of St. George's, Grenada, looking inland with the peak of Richmond Hill framed against the skyline
According to William R. O'Byrne's A naval biographical dictionary (London: 1849) Vol. 1, p.70, Bellairs joined the Navy in 1809 and made Lieutenant in 1819. He evidently travelled widely: the National Maritime Museum in London hold two of his West Indian drawings, the National Library of Australia a watercolour of a scene in Panama, and a collection of his drawings of the Far East were sold in 1982.
As the present drawing shows he was clearly gifted, and more than a match for many of the professional artists working at the time. His 'professional' status received contemporary confirmation when his watercolour 'View of the town of St. Thomas, in the West Indies' was drawn on stone by W.L. Walton, lithographed and hand-coloured by Charles Hullmandel, and published as a separate print in 1843 (a copy of this print is held in the New York Public Library collection, and is described by Deak).
Cf. Deák 525; cf. Martyn Gregory Galley "Lieutenant Walford Thomas Bellairs R.N. ... Admiralty agent and ... artist in the Far East" (London: 1982); cf. Rex Nan Kivell Collection NK10620; cf. Stokes Foreign Views, P.1840-50-H11A.