hrog

“Lawn Above the Fountain”

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003_006A

Detail

c1884

This is a detail from a photograph in Lavinia’s album. It was taken on the front lawn of the family home, “Old Hiawatha” in Balaclava and it can be dated to 1884 using the children’s apparent ages and the black armbands signifying the recent death of their mother in August of that year (and possibly that of their grandmother who died shortly after in October).

Mary Shaw has added to Lavinia’s caption, “Lawn Above the Fountain”. Mary noted the armbands and attempted to identify the subjects. It is definitely Alfred Shaw Senior on the grass in pith helmet and Eva Shaw at the right hand end of the bench seat. I’m less certain about it being Alfred Junior with the dog – maybe Ernest? And the girl in the swing is likely be one of the Thomas cousins, not Charlotte Alice Harvey wife to be of Alfred Junior. So, the others from the left – Herbert standing, unknown girl, Effie, the other Thomas cousin, (Eva), (Thomas cousin), possibly Mrs Sarah Thomas (nee Heywood) and an unknown man (Sarah’s husband, Hugh Thomas had died in 1881).

It is possible that the man at the right is Alfred Shaw (junior). He would have been 26 at the time and probably already heavily involved in his father’s business and soon to become successful in his own right. There are no photos with all three sons together and the more I look the more I think that Mary has incorrectly identified both Arthur and Ernest as Alfred in various group photos.

This print is glued directly onto the album page but there are similar family prints from the same time identified as by J. W. Lindt.

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