[lower] Sandgate Road.
FOLKESTONE'S FIRST GAS WORKS
No date but c.1843-44..
Pen and sepia ink wash drawing on paper, 4.25 x 7.25 inches, laid on to card, mounted, framed in reeded half-round gilt and glazed, overall 11.5 x 14 inches. Extracted from an album of sketches by Henry Moses dated 1843-1844. It depicts the area that is now Marine Parade, then totally undeveloped. There are a couple of huts visible at the end of the Road of Remembrance (formerly the Slope Road). The buildings in the foreground with the chimney are Folkestone's first gas works which opened in 1842. Tall ships can be seen in the Harbour, and fishing vessels drawn up on the beach. There is as yet no pier or Harbour Arm. The Lower Sandgate Road is shown in the very foreground under construction. At this date, the Harbour was being scoured and dredged by the South Eastern Railway who has just purchased it, and the two large carts being hauled by four horses each are laden with soil from the Harbour which was dumped as materials to build the Lower Sandgate Road, which at the time did not exist. The title 'Sandgate Road' is inscribed at the lower edge.
Henry Moses, 1782-1870, was highly regarded as a draughtsman and engraver and was known for, among many other works, several series of views of shipping, and a few coastal views. It is not clear how his marine interest developed but he used outline engraving to great effect in capturing maritime life and activities in his Sketches of Shipping (1824), where accurately drawn ships are set in suitable port landscapes. Similarly his Picturesque Views of Ramsgate (1817) includes busily populated images of ships in harbour.
This drawing is beautifully executed and highly detailed - the wash achieving great depth, crispness, clarity and accuracy providing the only reliable record we have of this pre-photographic era.
[Stock No. 25079]