Posts tagged ‘John Hill’

August 17, 2021

The Generosity of Supporters

I’ve constantly amazed by the generosity of the many, many supporters to the antique dealer research project. Over the years we have had donations of archives, ephemera, books as well as funds, and crucially people’s time, all of which have not only helped the various strands of the research project but have also helped to build a community of interested, and interesting, people.

But I was truly touched when the postie called last week to deliver a parcel from our lead volunteer, Chris Coles. Chris, as many of you will know, has been helping with the project for many years, helping out with many aspects of the projects, from undertaking and transcribing several of our Oral History interviews, sending us data and information on the history of antique dealers, and generally being first in line to help out with project events. When he started as a volunteer on the research project Chris was working in the Prints and Drawings Department at the British Museum, but he has now moved on to be a consultant researcher for the antique furniture trade.

Chris was exceptionally generous to send us this beautiful watercolour design for a needlework top for a period card table, produced for the antique dealers’ Camerons of Mount Street, London in 1940.

Wilfred Stanley Haines (1905-1944) Design for a Needlework Top for a Period Card Table, November 1940 for Camerons (Antiques), London. Photograph, Abbott & Holder.

The design was created by Wilfred Stanley Haines (1905-1944), who worked for his family firm A. Haines & Son, tapestry restorers at 216 Merton Road, Wimbledon. W.S. Haines trained at William Morris & Co and was working at Morris & Co in 1936 but by the time the Second World War broke out Haines was working for his family firm. Chris tells us that there are several watercolour designs by W.S. Haines in the collections at the V&A Museum in London. Sadly Haines was killed in a bombing raid during the Second World War in 1944 whilst working as a fireman.

Camerons (Antiques) was established in c.1910 by Beatrice Cameron, initially at 16 Mount Street, before relocating to 67 Duke Street, St. James’s immediately after the Second World War. Cameron’s seem to have specialised in antique tapestries and panelled rooms in the 1930s and 1940s, hence I guess, the commissioning of the design for a needlework top for an antique card table. W.S. Haines produced several designs for needlework tops and covers for antique furniture in the early 1940s, including a design for a needlework cover for a ‘Chippendale chair, circa 1760’ for the antique dealer William Lee of 39 Stonegate, York – (thanks to Chris for sending us all this information!). Below is a photograph of William Lee’s antique shop interior at Stonegate, of c.1949.

William Lee, 39 Stonegate, York, interior, c.1949. Photograph, Antique Dealers Research Project, University of Leeds.

Chris very generously gifted the watercolour to the antique dealer project, in honour, he tells us, of John Hill (of Jeremy Antiques, formerly of the King’s Road) and (he says) of me (I am truly flattered and honoured). Chris also tells us that Tom Edwards at Abbott & Holder (where Chris purchased the watercolour) was also exceptionally generous with a discount in acknowledgment of the gift of the watercolour to the antique dealer research project.

Thank you to Chris and to Tom for such generous gestures, it is so encouraging, and touching, that you regard the research project so highly.

Mark

March 1, 2018

Moss Harris & Sons – in the 1930s – antique shop images

Images of Antique Shops are something that the Antique Dealer Research Project has been collecting since the research project began in 2013; we now have more than 600 photographs of antique shops, interiors and exteriors, dating from c.1900, and illustrating the changing fashions for shop displays and marketing antiques over the last 100 years.  And thanks to John Hill, of the antique furniture dealers Jeremy Ltd., who very generously shared some early photographs of the antique dealers Moss Harris & Sons with us, we have some more fascinating images of this most important antique dealer firm.

John very kindly sent us these two photographs of the business of M.Harris & Sons.  Both appear to date from c.1935, when M.Harris opened an extra showroom at 61 St. James’s Street, London. Below is a photograph of the New Oxford Street shop of Moss Harris – it is fascinating to see how the shop had been remodelled, changing the old 1920s shop front (see further below) – certainly the shop front has a much subtler facade, and the late 19th century style advertising, a legacy of the firm of D.L. Isaacs, which Moss Harris took over in c.1918, has been much toned down; its also noticeable that the 1930s shop front has two Royal Warrants and a uniformed doorman.

Moss Harris & Sons, New Oxford Street, London, c.1935. Photograph courtesy of John Hill, Jeremy Ltd.

Compare with the facade of M. Harris & Sons New Oxford Street shop in c.1920.

Moss Harris & Sons, New Oxford Street, London, c.1920.

John also sent us a photograph of the Moss Harris & Sons’ delivery van, also dating from c.1935; another very smart thing and indicative of the high class antique dealer business that Moss Harris had become by the 1930s.

Moss Harris & Sons, delivery van, c.1935. Photograph courtesy of John Hill, Jeremy Ltd.

All of our corpus of photographs of antique dealer shops are currently being uploaded to the Antique Dealer Research Project Interactive Map – (see here – Antique Dealer Map).  Thanks again to John Hill for sharing his images of Moss Harris & Sons.

Mark

April 25, 2017

Latest BADA Voices Oral History Interview

We recently completed the latest in our series of Oral History interviews, as part of the extension to the research theme under the ‘BADA Voices’ project –  and thank you again to Marco, Mark and the team at the BADA for generously supporting these new oral history interviews. Our latest interviewee was the leading antique furniture dealer John Hill, of Jeremy Limited; the interview was undertaken by Chris Coles, our Lead Volunteer for the Antique Dealers research project.

John, Geoffrey and Michael Hill, outside of Jeremy Limited. Photograph courtesy of John Hill.

During this absolutely fascinating interview, John recalls the early history of the business of Jeremy Limited, established in 1946 by John’s father Geoffrey Hill, and well-known for their shop in the King’s Road, London.  John tells us how the firm got its name (his father was known to friends as ‘Jeremy’) and of his memories of many other key members of the London antique trade, including John Partridge, Francis Egerton of Mallett & Son and Horace Baxter of H.C. Baxter & Sons (we have also, as followers of the research project will know, interviewed both John Partridge Jnr and Gary Baxter, Horace Baxter’s son).

John also offered some interesting reflections on the marketing techniques of the firm during the 1960s and 1970s, and some absorbing memories of the Mentmore auction sale, conducted by Sotheby’s in 1977 – considered to be one of the key country house sales of the 20th century.

As will all of our Oral History interviews, our interview with John will, as soon as we are able, be edited, approved, and uploaded to the project website.

Mark

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