Fire at the Palace of Westminster, Turned Wood Snuff Box,
In 1828, John Soane drew attention to the fire risk, pointing out that much of the Palace was constructed of timber covered with plaster. However, few precautions were taken over the subsequent years.
On the night of 16 October 1834, a devastating fire broke out in the Palace after two underfloor stoves used to burn the Exchequer's stockpile of old tally sticks ignited panelling in the Lords Chamber.
The fire quickly swept through the entire Palace and destroyed many of its buildings. Turner and Constable, and probably Dickens, witnessed the fire, along with thousands of other sightseers - it was the largest conflagration in London apart from the Great Fire of 1666 and the Blitz in the Second World War.
John Doubleday produced a number of relics commemorating the burning down of the Houses of Parliament in 1834. On one of these he describes himself as J. DOUBLEDAY DEALER IN CAST OF OLD SEALS/ GREEKS COINS ETC, 18, LITTLE RUSSELL STREET BLOOMSBURY, LONDON.
His image is in the National Portrait Gallery where is recorded as "Originally a printer, John Doubleday took up business as a copyist of coins, medals and ancient seals and was employed by the British Museum as an antiquities restorer. His greatest triumph was the restoration of the Portland Vase, after it had been wilfully broken into numerous pieces in 1845."
If you require further information on this item you can contact us in a number of ways. Click here to see our contact information.