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Matlock Bath: Adam & Co., Royal Museum Advertisement, 1840
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Matlock Bath: from a sketch by Samuel Rayner, 1830

Hartle's Bazaar

Centre, later Royal, Museum

More engravings from this book (Picture Gallery):

The Crescent, Buxton

Haddon Hall

Matlock Bath

Other pages within the website with Orlando Jewitt engravings

Alfreton St. Martin

Bakewell Parish Church - Monuments inside All Saints'

Bakewell Parish Church - the Ancient Stone Cross

The image above shows where William Adam's Royal Museum was - the building in what is today Museum Parade (South Parade) that has the large window at first floor level. It was drawn by Thomas Orlando Jewitt, an engraver on wood and brother of Llewellynn Jewitt. He had lived in Duffield for a time before moving to Oxfordshire. Their father, Arthur Jewitt, describes the Parade and Museum in his "Matlock Companion" of 1835.

"Museum Parade. This is the most elegant, perhaps the most beautiful part of Matlock [Bath]. On the western side of fine gravelled road, edged with a smooth broad flagged causeway, is a pleasing row of tall houses, of a remarkable lively appearance, and bearing some little similarity to each other. They once formed but one building, which used to be an Hotel, but are now appropriated to various purposes. The house at the northern end is still an Hotel, kept by Mr. Hodgkinson: the two in the centre, decorated till lately, with light and beautiful porticoes, are used as museums, for the sale of minerals and fossil productions of the country, and of elegant trifles of every description.-That nearest the Hotel, distinguishable by its large projecting window, and the Royal Arms over its entrance, is the property of Mrs. Mawe ... "[1].

The portico outside Mr. Mawe's museum was first mentioned by Barker in the 1829 edition of his book: "the celebrated MUSEUM, distinguished by its modern portico. From hence you have one of the most interesting views of the river"[2].
Matlock Bath: from a sketch by Samuel Rayner, 1830. The porticoes mentioned by Arthur Jewitt can be seen below the big bay window in Rayner's sketch.

Adam took over what had been Mr. Mawe's Royal Museum from John Vallance, who opened his own museum in the building next door. It is Mr. Mawe's name that is shown in Jewitt's picture but Adam would undoubtedly have been pleased to have been associated with a man who was revered in geological circles of the day. The Museum was accessed through the door on the right and then by climbing a flight of stairs. It you look carefully at the windows you can see an array of objects for sale on display. When some bigger sculptures were put in the window they must have been a spectacular sight. His patron was William Spencer Cavendish, the bachelor 6th Duke of Devonshire who was a collector of sculpture and visited Matlock Bath on numerous occasions.

MAWE'S OLD MUSEUM (nearest to the Hotel). - This is a noble room, having formed originally the dining room of the Great Hotel, and purchased for its present purpose about 26 years since by Mr. Brown and son, whose first establishment was a shop on the Green, opened June 1810, (now the Bazaar). Its length is 36 feet by 21½ (extreme width in centre 27 feet), and admirably adapted for the display of goods. The business received a considerable impulse on Mr. Mawe's joining Mr. Brown some time after by opening a shop in London. It ultimately became the sole property of Mr. Mawe, who carried it on with increasing spirit ... efficiently assisted by Mr. Vallance. ... Mr. Vallance gave up his agency in 1831" ... "the management of the wholesale and retail trade and conducting of the manufactory have devolved on Mr. Adam (of Cheltenham)". ... "This Museum contains the largest Blue John Vase in the world" (William Adam, 1838)[3]. It had been bought from Mr. Shore by Mr. Mawe in 1815, soon after he had joined Mr. Brown in the spar trade[4].

Another purchase had been one of the largest pieces of Blue John ever found; it was discovered in 1813 and was said to be the largest specimen in the World, weighing 5cwt and composed of a number of round lumps. For two years it was exhibited on a small truck at the door of the Museum [possibly visible above] but "was sold in March last [1844?] to his Grace the Duke of Devonshire, and is now in the Grand Conservatory at Chatsworth. It is 2½ feet long and about 6 feet in girth"[4].

The advertisements for Adam & Co's. Royal Museum, below, included the Jewitt engraving and were a two page spread published in his book "The Gem of the Peak"[5].

In a footnote of his first guide, of 1838, Adam proudly noted that he was the first to introduce "the marble feet for the inlaid tables,
which has been of great benefit to the trade, also many other new things not thought of before"[3].

Adam also confirms the whereabouts of his workshops: "The Old Museum Workshops are to the north of the Bath, up the hill by the Hotel, in the stable yard. Mawe's (now Adam's) is entitled to the term Royal from their being the Manufacturers to all the members of the Royal family"[5].

Read another advertisement for the museum, extracted from Jewitt's "The Matlock Companion".
Henry Moore's "Picturesque Excursions From Derby to Matlock Bath, 1818" mentions the Museum.

A recommended read:
Derbyshire Archaeological Society: Miscellany Volume 16: Part 6 (Autumn 2003)
Steer, Jane "Part 3: The Site of the Hospital of St. Helen's in the 19th Century. 1 The Spar Manufactory". Jane's long article discusses the Brown family and Mr. Mawe.

Advertisements for The Royal Museum, Matlock Bath, and text from the book, published in: Adam, W. (1840) "The Gem of the Peak" London; Longman & Co., Paternoster Row.
From the collection of and © Ann Andrews.
Information written, researched by and © Ann Andrews.
Intended for personal use only.

References (coloured links are to transcripts and information elsewhere on this web site):

[1] Jewitt, Arthur (1835) "The Matlock Companion; and visitor's guide to the beauties of Matlock ..., including also a brief sketch of Buxton". Second edition. Duffield, Derby. To see the porticoes, plus the obelisks on top of the one outside Vallance's Museum, see Jewitt's sketch from the 1832 edition of his book on Dudley Mall: Samuel Rayner (1806 - 1879) (scroll down).
*Site currently unavailable.

[2] "The Panorama of Matlock and Its Environs; With the Tour of the Peak", by H. Barker, Esq. (1829), published by Longman & Co., London.

[3] Adam, W. (1838) "The Gem of the Peak; or Matlock Bath and Its Vicinity. ..." London; Longman & Co., Paternoster Row ; ... Mawe, Royal Museum, Matlock ; .... This was the first edition of his guide. There is a short biography of Mr. Mawe.

[4] Adam, William (1845) "The Gem of the Peak"... 4th edition. There is an albumen photo of the Grand Conservatory at Chatsworth elsewhere on this site, but the tufa Adam mentioned was not in the picture. The Conservatory is no longer standing, but the tufa has been seen at Chatsworth House in recent times.

[5] Adam, William (1840) "The Gem of the Peak"... 2nd edition - see onsite transcript.