William Chapman came of a good family-the Chapmans of Whitby. His father (also William Chapman) was one of the "worthies" of that place. To him Dr. Young, the historian of the town, acknowledges indebtedness for useful material in the compilation of his book. He was a merchant captain, trading chiefly from the Baltic ports to the Tyne, in which business he acquired reputation for shrewdness and intrepiditytwo qualities that were of high value at a time when bargains could not be sanctioned by telegraph, and the "lead" and the "look out" were the chief safeguards of navigation. He was ingenious too. On one of his voyages to Shields he discovered a plan for obtaining fresh water from the sea, and, having brought to land a specimen of the product of his amateur' distillery, received the approbation of his friends at the Lawe and the Low Lights, who pronounced it a most excellent article in the form of punch! He exhumed the remains of a crocodile in the lias formation at Whitby, and the species of saurian which he rescued from its stony surroundings bears the name of Telosaurus Chapmanni to this day. In his old age, Mr. Chapman, who was a freeman of Newcastle, came to live upon Tyneside, and died-"at his house in Saville Row, Newcastle, Oct. 15, 1793."

William Chapman.

William Chapman the younger was born at Whitby in 1750, and was put in command of a merchant vessel as soon as he was eighteen years old. He had received a liberal education, and, caring nothing for a seafaring life, einployed himself chiefly in studying the formation of the various ports and harbours to which his vessel traded, in

the hope, and with the object, of one day becoming a civil engineer. He went to sea for a few years, and then, obtaining the friendship of James Watt, and of his partner, Matthew Boulton, he accompanied the latter to Ireland, where, having written a prize essay on the effects of the river Dodder upon Dublin harbour, he obtained the appointment of resident engineer to the County of Kildare Canal. It was while acting in this capacity that he made his mark by inventing the skew arch. A description of the invention, from Mr. Chapman's pen, appears in "Rees's Encyclopædia," under the heading "Oblique Arches."

While the Kildare Canal was in progress, Mr. Chapman undertook the reconstruction of a bridge of five arches over the Liffey. A quicksand lay under the site of one of the piers, and it was impossible to avoid it, but Mr. Chapman overcame the difficulty with such remarkable ingenuity and success that offers of professional engagements came to him from all parts of Ireland. Among other projects on which he reported were improvements of the navigation of the Nore, the Barrow, and the Avoca, and the formation of a harbour at Arklow. Receiving the appointment of consulting engineer to the Grand Canal of Ireland, he laid out an extension of that canal from Roberts Town to Tullamore, a dock between Dublin and Ringsend, and a canal of communication by the line of the Circular Road. There were extensive bogs to be cut in the Tullamore extension, and the promoters had spent large sums of money in dealing with similar difficulties elsewhere. Mr. Chapman overcame these obstacles by a series of ingenious experiments, and the work was easily and expeditiously completed.

In 1794, Mr. Chapman came to Newcastle to report upon a project which was the subject of considerable agitation-that of constructing a canal from the German Ocean to the Irish Sea. He was a freeman of the town by patrimony, and he decided to remain here, and follow his profession as a consulting engineer. Into the advocacy of the canal scheme he entered with great heartiness and vigour. Between 1794 and 1798, he wrote several reports upon the subject, which were published by the promoters, and are to be found in every good collection of local tracts and pamphlets, as follows:

1795. Survey of a Line of Navigation from Newcastle to the Irish Channel.

1795. Report on the proposed Navigation between the East and West Seas.

1796. Report on the Line of Navigation from Newcastleupon-Tyne to the Irish Channel.

1796. Report on a Canal from Newcastle or North Shields towards Cumberland.

1797. Observations on Sutcliffe's Report in 1796 on the proposed Line from Stella to Hexham."

While the fate of the canal was still doubtful, Mr. Chapman was employed, conjointly with Mr. Rennie, in devising the London Dock, and the South Dock and Basin at Hull. He subsequently became engineer to the Commissioners of Leith and Scarborough Harbours, and


when Mr. Buddle induced the Marquis of Londonderry to construct Seaham Harbour, Mr. Chapman was the engineer to whom the undertaking was entrusted.

Mr. Chapman's inventive genius found scope in various directions. His brother, Edward Walton Chapman, was a roper at Willington, and for his benefit he patented, in 1797, a inachine for making ropes in such a way that there should be equal strain upon each and all of the separate strands, and, later on, another apparatus for composing at one operation a rope of indeterminate length. In conjunction with this same brother Edward, he patented in December, 1812, "A Method or Methods of facilitating the Means and reducing the Expense of Carriage on Railways and other Roads." Another

of his inventions was the "Coal Drop." He also obtained a patent (April 12, 1821) for a method of transferring the contents of lighters and barges into ships, &c., by the intervention of a small vessel called a transferrer," fitted with a steam engine for haulage, and this invention was used at the Londonderry shipping places till the completion of Seaham Harbour.


Several ingenious papers were contributed by Mr. Chapman to the Proceedings of the Newcastle Literary and Philosophical Society, and others were published in pamphlet form, or in the serials of the day. Among the best known of his publications are—

1797. On the various Systems of Canal Navigation. 4to. Plates.

1808. On the Progressive Endeavours to improve the Manufacture and Duration of Cordage, with a Discussion on the means of causing Ships to ride at Anchor with greater safety. 4to. Three Engravings.

1815. Observations on the Effects of the Proposed Corn Laws. 8vo.

1815. Observations on the necessity of adopting Legislative Measures to diminish the probability of the recurrence of Fatal Accidents in Collieries, and to prolong the duration of the Coal Mines of the United Kingdom. 8vo.

1817. On the Preservation of Timber from Premature Decay. 8vo.

1830- A description of the Port of Seaham, in explanation of a Plan of the Harbour and a Chart of the Coast. 4to. Plates.

Mr. Chapman retained the full enjoyment of his faculties, and followed the active pursuits of his profession, till within a very short period of his decease, which took place on the 29th of May, 1832, having then entered into his 83rd year. "Gifted with a strong understanding, and with great and acknowledged talents, he was equally distinguished in private life by those amiable qualities which adorn the domestic scene, and constitute its chief enjoyments. It may truly be said that few men have descended into the grave more sincerely lamented by immediate relatives and connections, or more generally and extensively esteemed and respected."

Gibside and its Owners.

EW gentlemen's seats in the immediate neighbourhood of Newcastle are more interesting than Gibside. Since the time when the grounds were laid out much as we find them now, by George Bowes, about the years 1740-1760, the name of Gibside has always been sug gestive of pleasant walks and shady groves. Doubtless the place was one of some beauty before Mr. Bowes took it in hand. But it is to his taste that it owes much of the celebrity which it has possessed for a long time in the northern parts of the county of Durham. When Hutchinson wrote his "History of Durham "-shortly after the death of George Bowes-he declared that it was difficult to convey an idea of the beautiful and magnificent scenery of the place.

The celebrated Mrs. Montagu, of Denton Hall, writing to Benjamin Stillingfleet, from "Carville, Oct. 22, 1758" (she was staying at Carville, near Wallsend, while Denton Hall was being repaired), gives the following exaggerated account of Gibside :-"I had a very kind invitation from Mrs. Lowther to pass some time at Lowther Hall; I am told it is the finest place in the North; I believe I should rather have admired than coveted it; grandeur without softness pleases me in a place no better than dignity without courtesy in a man or woman. Lowther is much greater than Gibside, which is too great for me. I love woods, but I do not desire such forests that you would rather expect to be entertained in the evening with the howling of wolves and yelling of tigers than with Philomel's lovelaboured song. Such a place is a fit pasture for Nebuchadnezzar; pride and tyranny may delight in it. I would divide the glebe with the husband man. Useful Ceres, though she does not set up for a deity of taste, enlivens and embellishes a rural scene more than all the arts and sciences." As many of the present plantations were only commenced in 1729, and as plantings continued till 1760, the woods of Gibside would be very small in Mrs. Montagu's time.

Amongst the earlier possessors of Gibside was a family of the name of Marley, who resided at Marley Hill about the year 1200. The estates were held by the Marleys until 1540, in which year there was a failure of male issue, the last owner leaving an only daughter, Elizabeth. This heiress married Roger Blakeston, of Coxhoe, thus carrying the estates to another family. About the year 1694, there was again an heiress to the estates. The lands passed in course of time to the family of Bowes, of Streatlam Castle. Not quite another century passed away before there was another failure of male issue, when by the marriage in 1767 of Mary Eleanor, only daughter of George Bowes, of Streatlam and Gibside, to the Earl of Strath

more, of Glamis Castle, Scotland, the lands were again transferred to another family.

The fortunes of Mary Eleanor, Countess of Strathmore, subsequent to the death of the earl about nine years after the marriage, are so well known that it is not necessary to enter into them here. (See the story of Stoney Bowes, vol. i., page 196.) The Earl of Strathmore left a family of three sons and two daughters. The eldest son John succeeded to the estates and titles. This nobleman died on July 31, 1820, having the day previously married Mary Milner, of Staindrop. Their son, the late John Bowes, succeeded, on coming of age, to the English estates, the Scotch estates and titles reverting to the Hon. Thomas Bowes, the only surviving brother of the late earl. John Bowes, the son of the Earl of Strathmore and Miss Mary Milner, possessed the Gibside and Streatlam estates until his death in October, 1885, when, having died without issue, the estates reverted to the present Earl of Strathmore, who has a numerous family of sons and daughters.

The Dowager Countess of Strathmore married, on the 16th March, 1831, William Hutt, Esq., who subsequently became Sir William Hutt, and was for some years M.P. for Gateshead, and at one time Vice-President of the Board of Trade in Mr. Gladstone's Government. Mr. Hutt was visited at Gibside by Lord John Russell, and afterwards by Mr. Gladstone.

John Bowes, of Streatlam and Gibside, was twice married, first to Josephine Benoite, Countess of Mont. albo, a French lady. It was through this lady that the magnificent Bowes Museum at Barnard Castle was commenced. It was intended for her residence in case she survived Mr. Bowes; but she died in 1874. Her remains were brought to Gibside and placed on a bier underneath the chapel. Since Mr. Bowes's death they have been deposited in one of the vaults in the family mausoleum at Gibside. Mr. Bowes subsequently married another French lady, who survived him.


Gibside has continued to the present day to be a favourite resort of pleasure parties who obtain the permission of the proprietor to visit it. Whether the eminent landscape gardener, Capability Brown, had any hand in planning the various avenues and plantations, I cannot say. At any rate, they bear traces of the new school of gardening which Brown did so much to promote at the seats of noblemen and gentleThere are several places in Gibside that seem to have been laid out with great taste and judgment. At a spot called the Top of the Hollow Walk, there were (and it may truly be said to a certain extent that there are yet) three fine vistas in three different directions. If the view be directed towards the south, a fine avenue of beeches is seen commencing at the place where the observer is standing. Continuing the view forward, a grassy steep meets the sight, crowned at the top by an elegant Banqueting Hall. Although to

appearance there seems an avenue all the way to the Banqueting House, yet the eye entirely overlooks a fine piece of water concealed by the rising nature of the ground. If the gaze be turned to the westward, in the foreground is seen a descending piece of mossy sward, terminated at the bottom by a stretch of level verdure, again rising to about the same height as the spectator's standpoint. This forms an avenue fringed on each side by magnificent forest trees. Away beyond the last piece of rising sward stretches a fine terrace, formed by George Bowes about the year 1747, and mentioned in a letter from Bishop Pocock to his sister. At the west end of this terrace stands the elegant chapel, formed after a classical model, with an Ionic portico in front. If, now, the spectator will turn himself to the north, he will see a wide lawn descending to another sheet of water surrounded by trees, and covered in the season with a profusion of white water lilies (Nymphea alba). Let the visitor now descend this lawn and place himself on the western edge of the lily pond, and he will see, if the day be calm and the face of the pond be free from ripple, a beautiful picture of a bank of trees with the Column of Liberty (described in vol. ii., page 466) reflected in the water as if in a sheet of silvered glass. He will also find himself surrounded on nearly all sides by lofty forest trees. The taste and judgment must have been highly cultivated that could plan so many beauties to be seen from one point of view.

The Banqueting Hall was erected by George Bowes, and the writer has been informed that he died before it was put to any use. It is built in the Florid Gothic style, with ornamented crockets. A pointed spire rises above the front entrance. The door and windows are glazed in geometrical patterns. The interior consists of a spacious dining and luncheon hall, with a handsomely ornamented ceiling. A staircase leads to the roof, from which there is a fine view. The floor is of pine, and is laid so that not a nail hole or mark is visible. At each end are mirrors in the walls, so that when a company would be seated there would be what appeared an almost endless length of table and guests. Altogether it was an elegant erection, and quite in keeping with the rest of the grounds and buildings.

The chapel, which stands at the west end of the terrace made by George Bowes, was commenced in the year 1760, but was not consecrated until 1812. It was intended to serve, and does serve, both as a place of worship and a family mausoleum. The mausoleum is underneath the chapel, and is entered by a door on the west side, which opens on a short passage and some steps to a burial vault. This vault is formed by a groined arch, round the sides of which are arranged in a semicircle the niches for the reception of the remains of the members of the family. There are eleven of these, but about four or five are still unoccupied. George Bowes, who commenced to build the chapel, was first interred at Whickham, but his remains

were removed here on the consecration and completion of the edifice. The interior of the chapel is very handsome. Outside is a handsome Ionic portico, with flights of stone steps leading up to the porch, and protected with stone balustrades.

The Hall itself is a long and low building of only two storeys in height, except at the east end, where the ground shelves rapidly. The windows looking towards the park or the south, as may be seen from our drawing, are divided by heavy stone mullions. Above the front door is a sun dial, which has already been described in the Monthly Chronicle. (See page 294.) Previous to 1805, when the hall was altered to its present shape, it was, as may be seen from an engraving in Hutchinson's "History of Durham," three storeys high and covered with grey slates. The hall on the northern side stands on the top of a steep declivity, terminated at the bottom by a level haugh or plain, round which the Derwent flows.

Another sketch of Gibside, copied from Allom's Views, was given in vol. 1., page 200. JAS. F. ROBINSON.

The Village of Alnmouth.

LNMOUTH, as seen under azure skies through a sunny and crystalline atmosphere, may truly be described as the prettiest watering-place on the coast of Northumberland. The village is attractive from many points of view, and especially from the Church Hill, on the opposite side of the river.

Standing on this dune-like mound, we observe that the village is seated on a peninsular tongue of land-the extremity of a high green ridge sweeping round from Lesbury. On the east side is the sea, on the south and west sides the river. In the background are the terraced sea-banks and the Wallop Hill, which have evidently been moulded into their present form by the action of water. On the summit of the latter, which is 157 feet above the sea-level, the ancient burgesses of Alnmouth were required, in the event of an outbreak of hostilities between the Scots and the English, to keep a "good sur watch" during the day time as well as the night time, and to maintain two beacons for the purpose of alarming the country on the approach of the enemy. Immediately below the hill on the west side is a camp of the ancient Britons, in shape an irregular

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quadrangle, the ramparts of which, however, are not visible from the standpoint of our sketch. About two hundred yards from this camp is the entrance to the village, which consists

of a long and undulating street running north and south, with a few terraces and lanes branching off on


each side.

A snug and compact little village, old-fashioned in appearance, and picturesquely irregular ! The betterclass houses and the fishermen's cottages are in friendly juxta-position. They face all the points of the compass. Here you see a front, there a gable. In many villages you have the roofs of the houses all of one height, and continuous along a terrace or crescent; but here you find them at different levels, broken in a few cases by dormer windows, blue slated and red-tiled. Surmounting them all is the elegant spire of St. John's Church -a familiar land-mark. The village owes much of its character, architecturally, to a number of heavy-looking buildings, such as the parish Sunday-school, the Alnmouth Academy, and several dwelling-houses, all of which were originally granaries. Alnmouth, till the opening of the railway, was a port of some consequence, and exported large quantities

of corn. Several of the houses in Alnmouth are old. At the very entrance to the village we observe on a door-head the date 1713. Facing the river are some newly-built villas. The eye dwells with pleasure on a clump of tall trees at the north end of the village in the possession of a colony of rooks, on a few little gardens nearer hand, and on the green bank which rises from the fawncoloured sand by the side of the Aln.

Adjoining the village on the east side is the recreation-ground of the inhabitants and their visitors. Here is played the seductive game of golf, which has contributed so much to the popularity of the place. The clubhouse, with its pretty verandah, is situated at the south-west corner of the links. This fine open space is a scene of animation when the patrons

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