Notes and Sources - Scarborough 2
N.B: The notes/sources below can be accessed individually by clicking on the small, superscripted numbers found with the relevant text throughout this web-site. The 'return' link at the end of each individual note/source will take you back whence you came. Some of the superscripted numbers are followed by a small letter 'n'; this denotes a 'note' as opposed to a mere 'source'. (Internet Explorer users beware: you may not always be 'taken to' or 'returned to' precisely the designated location on the page: for accurate results every time - use Netscape.)

Giving sources relating to Elizabeth Gaskell's 'The Life of Charlotte Brontë' presents a problem: there are so many different editions of this book, it is pointless giving page numbers. In this case I have tried to indicate where the information is located by giving the approximate distance through the relevant chapter (i.e. a quarter way through CH.5). In some cases I have stated the information's proximity to a dated letter - as all letters in the book are presented in date order, and are easy to locate.

BPM = Brontë Parsonage Museum (library).


29) The actual line in Agnes Grey reads: 'one water-cart coming out of the town to fetch water for the baths'. This may have actually referred to the water carts that would come down Falconer's Road (Now Vernon Road) and pass beneath the Cliff Bridge (now Spa Bridge) on to the sands to fetch water for the three baths located near the top-end of St. Nicholas Cliff: Harland's Baths advertised that their establishment was 'constantly supplied with pure sea-water'. Travis's Baths likewise declared that 'Every tide, these baths are supplied with pure sea water': see details and sketches of these baths by clicking on the appropriate links on the 'Scarborough Map (1845)' - accessible from 'Main Page'. (return)

30) Several contemporary paintings confirm that holidaymakers did take walks along the pathways that weave along the uneven slopes of the South Cliff, just as they do today (see 'Anne Brontë Was Here' - 'Gallery 2' - accessible from 'Main Page'): considering Anne's love for walking, and the time she spent at the resort, there can be little doubt that she also, would have taken walks along these pathways. A note in Ellen Nussey's diary for 1 June (Fri) 1849 - two days after Anne had been interred - states 'At the South Cliff 1849.' - indicating that she and Charlotte had spent some time in this area of the resort - probably on Anne's recommendation: the previous day they had visited the castle. (return)

31) These 'Marine Houses' were demolished between 1842 and 1845 - they are clearly indicated on the 1842 Scarborough map, but do not exist on the 1845 version. See maps - Scarborough Library. (return)

32) The suggestion that Anne may have visited these, and/or the other 'indoor baths' near St. Nicholas Cliff while at Scarborough with the Robinsons, is based, firstly, on the fact that Mr. Robinson's 'cash accounts' actually contain entries for "Sea Baths", proving that the Robinsons certainly visited these premises (see Gerin, 'Branwell Brontë - A Biography', p.232); and secondly, on the morning after her arrival - on her dying visit in 1849, Anne insisted on attending one of these baths, and being allowed to bathe there alone, which seems to indicate that it was an activity in which she had engaged before. (return)

33) In a letter to Ellen Nussey dated 19 July 1841, Charlotte declared that she had considered Bridlington as one possible location for their school - Harrison and Stanford, 'Anne Brontë - Her Life and Work', p.72. Given this, and Anne's love of Scarborough; it is difficult to believe that Anne would not have seriously contemplated situating the school at this resort: indeed, it is very strongly implied in Agnes Grey - Chitham, 'A Life of Anne Brontë', p.22 - also p.86. Winifred Gerin states, as a fact, that Anne did actually suggest Scarborough - but offers no source for this information - Gerin, 'Anne Brontë - A Biography', p.201. (return)

34) The 'A64' road enters Scarborough from the south-west; however, in Agnes Grey, the main road entering the resort approaches from the north-west. When Anne made her visits to Scarborough during the 1840s, there were only three main access roads to the resort: the north (Whitby) coast road, the south (Filey/Bridlington/Hull) coast road, and the south-west 'Seamer' road (currently the 'A64'); the latter being the one Anne would have used on her journeys to and from Scarborough. There were no main roads from the north west - as Anne describes in the novel (though the north {Whitby} coast road does tend to drift slightly westwards!). Also see Chitham, 'A Life of Anne Brontë', p.86. (return)

35) This 'promontory', formed by a platform of rock - protruding through the sands, and jutting a few hundred yards out to sea, can be seen from a distance in the picture on the previous page ('View to the right - from Grand Hotel'). An 1876 painting of a similar view is displayed in the Scarborough Art Gallery - The Burning of the Spa Saloon, by John Atkinson Grimshaw (1836 - 1893) - and confirms what one would expect - that this rock formation has changed little since that time. It can also be faintly seen in the background of the 'Wood's Lodgings' sketch of around 1840 (from 'Main Page' follow link to 'Wood's Lodgings' - though detail is difficult to see on the small copy of this picture presented here). This is without doubt the 'promontory' that Anne refers to in Agnes Grey. (return)

36) Would someone remember such a detail as the sun dazzling from the sea when looking back across the bay - over a year after last experiencing it (which was about the time Anne is reputed to have begun writing Agnes Grey)?  I have undertaken this 'walk' innumerable times over the many years I have visited Scarborough - yet I had to specifically make the 'walk' once again to confirm that this sun/sea dazzle did actually occur! It leaves me convinced that this chapter of Agnes Grey (and possibly the final chapter too) was not written over a year after Anne's last visit to Scarborough, but actually written at the resort itself (it is too precise to be otherwise). It therefore has to be a strong possibility that this was part of 'the fourth volume of Solala Vernon's Life': it certainly could have been part of 'Passages In the Life of an Individual', which she began writing several years later (and could well have been partly written at Scarborough), and may have been a mere development of 'Solala Vernon's Life'. (return)

37) Ellen Nussey noted in her diary, for Sunday 27th. May 1849 (the day before Anne's death), 'A.B. and C.B. and E.N. on Scarbro' bridge'. Also, in a letter to a Mrs. Ward on 30th May 1849 (the day Anne was interred), Ellen wrote '. . on Sunday she walked on the Bridge . .', Barker, 'The Brontës: A Life In Letters', p.236. In Charlotte's 'list of expenses' for that week she notes: '3 Tickets for Bridge 7s - 6d.' [37·5p] (Charlotte's Cash Book [1848-9] - BPM. Also, Harrison and Stanford, 'Anne Brontë - Her Life and Work', p.155/156. (N.B: Winifred Gerin states they paid 6d. each to cross the bridge ['Anne Brontë - A Biography', p.316]; Edward Chitham states that they bought two tickets on the day they arrived at Scarborough (Fri) ['A Life of Anne Brontë', p.184]; however, there seems to be no evidence to support these latter two claims. (return)

38) The novel is titled 'And The Weary Are At Rest', and was written around 1844 - 45. It appears that there is one volume of what was intended to be three: Branwell wrote to a friend in 1845: 'I have, since I saw you at Halifax, devoted my time to the composition of a 3-volume Novel - one of which is completed.' There exists about seventy pages in total. It was privately printed in 1924 - and is currently housed in the BPM. A small section describes an occasion on Scarborough's South Sands; indeed, unlike in Anne's novel, Scarborough is mentioned by name. It is in this section that the Rotunda Museum is described:

'. . . I once sat not far from Scarboro' under a black, wet semicircle of rock, with no objects in sight except sand and starfish for a few yards in front and the tidal waves framed in the dark rocks of my cove, which ended in a grey background of sea stretching parallel to a milky sky. Now, one might ask where lay the charm that could keep me half an hour biting my cane . . . when, if the prospect did embrace the three great objects of Nature -- Heaven, Earth and Ocean -- they would all have been seen to better advantage on the walls of the National Gallery. . . . Would not a railway cutting show rockwork in a more scientific as well as more shapely form than the shapeless and useless piles that girdled me? Would not even the little Circular Museum hold forth . . . more interesting specimens of geological and zoological history than those afforded by the cornelian pebbles of limpit shells or starfish that sprawled among . . . the sand and seaweed? Very true -- . . . but neither science and the picturesque combined . . . can produce . . . the incommunicable emotion of an inward reflected joy.'

. . . 'And The Weary Are At Rest'

For the above quotation, and other details, see Gerin, 'Branwell Brontë - A Biography', p.229; & p.253 - p.260. (return)

39) The 'Rotunda Museum', shown in the picture, did not exist prior to 1829; and by 1842, Wood's Lodgings, seen on the Cliff, had had the larger 'central block' building added - hence, this picture must have been produced between these dates. (return)

40) In 1842 Wood's Lodgings was re-structured with a new down-the-cliff extension being added. The whole building can be seen here indicating that the picture was produced sometime after this date; also, the heavy growth of trees on the cliff directly in front of the lodgings suggests that it was at least several years later; but, other than St. Mary's church, there are no apparent buildings on Castle Road (background) - where the building of lodging houses commenced in 1845 (Berryman, 'Scarborough As It Was' - approx. 2/3 way through text section; also see 16th picture - showing Castle Road, castle and St. Mary's Church: the book is not paginated) thus suggesting a date of around 1845. (return)

41) A number of years ago, there was some suggestion that it may not actually be healthy to drink the Spa water; however, to prove this theory wrong, the then mayor of Scarborough went down there and proceeded to guzzle down two glassfuls: it is not recorded whether he suffered any ill effects! (return)

42) Juliet Barker suggests that there is no proof that the Robinsons began visiting Scarborough prior to 1841 (Barker, 'The Brontës', p.343; & p.901 - note 84); however, this is incorrect; the Scarborough Herald and General Advertiser papers covering a period in the latter half of 1839, and currently held in Scarborough Library, indicate that, while the Robinsons were not at Scarborough on Sept 26; 'Rev. E. Robinson and Mrs. and family' were at 'No. 12, The Cliff' on Oct 3rd., Oct 10th. and Oct 17th. (there are no 1839 editions after this date). This seems an unusually late period to take a holiday; however, this evidence, coupled with the knowledge that they did visit the resort each year from 1841 onwards, seems to make it highly likely that they (and Anne) were there in 1840. (return)

43) Chitham, 'A Life of Anne Brontë', p.137. The 'Oddfellows' is a society akin to the Freemasons. The Oxford dictionary gives this description of them:

'a society, fraternity, or 'order', organized under this name, with initiatory rites, mystic signs of recognition, and various 'degrees' of dignity and honour, for social and benevolent purposes, especially that of rendering assistance to members in sickness, distress, or other need. The name 'Odd Fellows' appears to have been originally assumed by local clubs formed in various parts of England during the 18th c. for convivial and social purposes, usually with rites of initiation, passwords, and secret ceremonies, supposed to imitate those of Freemasonry.' (return)

44) Gerin, 'Branwell Brontë - A Biography', p.232. (return)

45) This sketch is displayed (framed) on the wall of the 'Scarborough Room', in the local studies section of Scarborough Library. Someone has printed on the bottom: 'Prior to 1850', which seems to suggest that they were aware of some change that occurred in 1850 which is not evident in the picture - though I am not sure what!; but the range of buildings on Castle Road (background - no building work started here until 1845) indicate that it was certainly late 1840s (possibly 1849?). (return)

46) Anne Brontë, 'Agnes Grey', chapter 25. (return)

47) Considering the amount of time Anne spent at Scarborough it is inconceivable to think that she would not have visited the castle: there is no doubt that the castle was open to the public in the 1840s: for Thursday 31 May 1849, the day after Anne's funeral, Ellen Nussey's diary records: 'Visited Scarbro castle with C.B.'; and this visit would probably have been made on Anne's recommendation. Also, Anne's description of Edward Weston and Agnes Grey's walk to 'the edge of the precipice', with the 'glorious view' out to sea, and 'the restless world of waters at our feet' is too accurate to have been written from anything other than personal experience. (return)

48) Anne Brontë, 'Agnes Grey', CH. 25. As regards Anne's reference to 'the restless world of waters at our feet' - today, at the base of the cliff, the sea can frequently be seen crashing against the sea wall, and spraying well over the road - even in relatively calm weather; but, of course, the Marine Drive (the road surrounding the headland) was not built until the turn of the century: in Anne's day the base of the headland was surrounded by nothing more than rocks and boulders that had fallen from the cliff face; though equally spectacular displays would be witnessed as the sea crashed into these giant obstacles. (return)

49) In 1842 Wood's Lodgings was re-structured, with a new down-the-cliff extension being added. The whole building can be seen here looking in pristine condition indicating that the painting can not have been produced too many years after this time. However, the 'Crown Hotel' on the Esplanade (top of the south cliff) is clearly visible - this was not built until 1844 (see Berryman, 'Scarborough As It Was' - approx. 2/3 way through text section, and the 26th picture - showing the Crown Hotel close-up in 1844; and the 36th picture - showing it from a distance in 1845 - the book is not paginated), and the range of buildings on Castle Road (background - building work did not commence here until 1845 (also see Berryman, 'Scarborough As It Was' - approx. 2/3 way through text section, and the 16th picture - showing Castle Road, castle and St. Mary's Church) seem to indicate a date of around 1847/48.

This beautiful painting hangs in the 'Scarborough Room' of the Local History section of Scarborough Library. It is very unfortunate that official copies of it cannot be obtained - the Library does not have the funds to have it professionally re-produced. This copy is the best I could manage with my limited equipment in the low-light room. (return)

50) Gerin, 'Branwell Brontë - A Biography', p.232. (return)

51) Such displays are particularly common around the 'Spa Complex Buildings' area at the South Bay, and would have been just the same in the 1840s, when Henry Wyatt's Gothic Saloon stood on this site. (return)

52) Anne Brontë, Agnes Grey, CH. 24 - 'The Sands'. (return)

53) The picture on the left is reproduced from a postcard which is post-dated 28 July 1905 - therefore the photograph must have been taken before this time. The picture on the right has no date, but must have been taken between 1898 and 1907 as the 'Warwick Revolving Tower', which only existed throughout this period, can be seen at the rear-end of the castle. (return)

54) This picture was re-produced from an undated postcard; however, an officially printed paragraph on the card's rear states:

'Scarborough. -- South Bay During Storm on Monday, March 12th, 1906. -- The South Bay was visited by the highest tide ever remembered by the oldest inhabitants. Huge waves swept across the roadway, dashing into shops and flooding cellars. The sea with terrific force dashed against the Spa wall, carrying away huge blocks of stone and doing great damage. Our picture forms a striking contrast to the appearance of the South Bay and foreshore in summer when crowded with happy holiday makers.' (return)

55) Both these pictures were re-produced from postcards. The one on the left is post-dated 27 June 1929; the one on the right 7 September 1928. Obviously, the photographs were taken sometime before these dates. (return)

56) The novel is titled 'And The Weary Are At Rest', and was written around 1844 - 45. It appears that there is one volume of what was intended to be three: Branwell wrote to a friend in 1845: 'I have, since I saw you at Halifax, devoted my time to the composition of a 3-volume Novel - one of which is completed.' There exists about seventy pages in total. It was privately printed in 1924 - and is currently housed in the BPM. A small section describes an occasion on Scarborough's South Sands; indeed, unlike in Anne's novel, Scarborough is mentioned by name. It is in this section that the Rotunda Museum is described:

'. . . I once sat not far from Scarboro' under a black, wet semicircle of rock, with no objects in sight except sand and starfish for a few yards in front and the tidal waves framed in the dark rocks of my cove, which ended in a grey background of sea stretching parallel to a milky sky. Now, one might ask where lay the charm that could keep me half an hour biting my cane . . . when, if the prospect did embrace the three great objects of Nature -- Heaven, Earth and Ocean -- they would all have been seen to better advantage on the walls of the National Gallery. . . . Would not a railway cutting show rockwork in a more scientific as well as more shapely form than the shapeless and useless piles that girdled me? Would not even the little Circular Museum hold forth . . . more interesting specimens of geological and zoological history than those afforded by the cornelian pebbles of limpit shells or starfish that sprawled among . . . the sand and seaweed? Very true -- . . . but neither science and the picturesque combined . . . can produce . . . the incommunicable emotion of an inward reflected joy.'

. . . 'And The Weary Are At Rest'

For the above quotation, and other details, see Gerin, 'Branwell Brontë - A Biography', p.229; & p.253 - p.260. (return)

57) The sun reflecting from the sea does not occur directly in-line with the view back towards the centre of the bay, but from several degrees further out to sea: however, even at this angle, the glare does affect the ability to see in the Grand Hotel direction. (return)

58) Christ Church never had its own church-yard: in later years, all its burials took place in the Dean Road cemetery. (return)


BPM = Brontë Parsonage Museum (library).


Copyright © 1999 Michael Armitage

  Notes & Sources (Scarborough 1)  Notes & Sources (Wood's Lodgings)  
RETURN:
        Main Page    Notes and Sources
26  -  June  -  99   
Mick Armitage (e-mail)