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Given by Mrs. J. Dolby


The autobiography of William Simpson, R.I. (Crimean Simpson) edited by George Eyre-Todd. London, T. Fisher Unwin 1903.

(No. 3 of limited edition of 100)

Illustrated with many reproductions of Simpson’s pictures from various collections. 351pp.

William Simpson (1823-1899) was an artist who made his name first by his drawings of the Crimean War published in the Illustrated London News for which he was a correspondent, being known as Crimean Simpson. He first went to India in 1859 and travelled extensively (22,570 miles) making drawings of Government occasions and Indian architectural features. He left in 1862, and returned in 1868 commissioned by the ILN to illustrate the new route to India via the Suez Canal. He set out in December 1868 and visited the Suez Canal newly completed. He was sent out. to the opening in November 1869 and also to the Vatican Council begun in December. He covered the Franco-Prussian War, and in September 1875 went to India with the Prince of Wales, and covered the Durbar of that year. In 1876 and 1877 he was in Mycenae, Troy and Ephesus covering Schliemann’s excavations, and in October 1878 left for India again to cover the Afghan War, which he describes, and in Afghanistan he made several archaeological excavations. Meets Madame Blavatsky. He was prevented from going to Kabul by Major Cavagnari, and returned to England in 1879.

In 1884 he was the only Press correspondent to go with the Afghan Boundary Commission, which was the last time he went to Asia.

The originals of his works are in Sandringham House, Buckingham Palace and other private collections.

He wrote on Indian archaeology and Indian religions, and published a considerable amount.