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Broadway, Deptford f. 12

Broadway, Deptford f. 12

Artist: Ritchie, W.

Medium: Pencil on paper

Date: 1840

Shelfmark: Additional MS 16945 f. 12

Length: 13.4

Width: 20.2

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Drawing

Ritchie's pencil sketch depicts Deptford Broadway as it would have appeared in the mid 19th century.

Deptford flourished during the 17th century, when its wooden cottages were home to the shipwrights, sailors and craftsmen who worked for the Royal Navy. Sea captains, foremen and officials occupied the brick built houses that lined the main streets such as the Broadway. Despite the town's reputation as a major industrial centre in the 18th and 19th centuries, the large majority of its resident families were poor. Most of the men were unskilled labourers doing seasonal work at the dockyards. Many unsavoury "fragrances" lurked in the air, as the locality was home to glue works, gasworks, tar distilleries, breweries and manufacturers of artificial manure!

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