About this image
Thomas William Hammond 1854-1935. Born in Philadelphia of Nottingham emigres, and orphaned at the age of four, he came to England with his younger sister Maria and lived for a short while with his grandparents in Mount Street. In 1868 age 14 he enrolled in the Government School of Art. On the 1871 census he is described as a lace curtain designer, and in 1872 he was awarded the 'Queen's Prize for a Design of a Lace Curtain'. Other prizes followed and in 1877 he was again awarded the Queen's Prize, this time for the design for a damask table Cloth. Hammond was an indefatigable worker, and soon began to use his skills as a draftsman to record aspects of the changing town. He began showing his work at local venues in 1882 and in 1890 exhibited for the first time at the Royal academy. His real hobby was black and white sketching in charcoal. He drew about 350 pictures all together mainly scenes of a Nottingham he knew but which has largely passed away today. Extracted from 'The Changing Face of Tom Hammond's Nottingham' by John Beckett which is the introductory essay in 'A City in the Making Drawings of Tom Hammond'. This is a particularly happy drawing showing a very picturesque side of Nottingham. Until about 1850 there were very few houses south of the Canal, as the Lammas fields lying between the Canal and the Trent were common property to the Town and preserved rural conditions until quite modern times. The Canal, however, was constructed much earlier than this; the first sod being cut in 1792. A couple of years later the section of the Canal between the Trent and the Town Bridge over the Leen, which stood near the junction of Leenside and Bridge Street, was ready for use. The opening was the occasion of much ceremony, a procession of three decorated barges being formed with the regimental band of the Light Horse in attendance. As the first lock was filled, the band played 'Rule Britannia', and during the progress of the procession to the Town Bridge, 'Hearts of Oak' and other nautical airs were performed. Image and descriptive text taken from 'Nottingham Past and Present', published in 1926.