Sheffield in 1836
, British, 1791 - 1864
Material and Medium: oil on canvas
Dimensions: Sight size: 888 x 1768mm
Overall: 1115 x 2018 x 75mm
Department: Social History
This panoramic view of Sheffield was painted in 1836 from Heeley Bank (today, Heeley Bank Road). The view stretches from the Botanical Gardens on the left all the way over to the Queen’s Tower near Norfolk Park.
In 1836, Sheffield was a large town rather than a city, and was considerably smaller than it is today. The foreground of the painting shows the agricultural land surrounding the town to the south-east. Today, houses, streets, the railway line and Sheffield United’s Bramall Lane football ground cover this area.
Many of the buildings in the painting can be identified, and most were built just before this painting was finished. We don’t know why William Cowen painted this picture, but it does show the prestigious buildings of the town and is a reflection of Sheffield’s local pride.
The conservation of this painting was funded by Wolf Safety Lamp Company, in memory of the founder William Maurice (1872 - 1951). It was framed and glazed with the generous support of the Earl Fitzwilliam Charitable Trust.