Sunday, 2 August 2009


The Nightingale Family

I wonder how many people who live at Nightingale Corner know where it got its name?
Robert Nightingale was a local painter who gained great renown in his day for animal portraiture in particular. Indeed Edward Vll had Robert paint a life sized portrait of a favourite horse.
Robert was born in Eltham, Kent in 1817 and married a Maldon girl. They had ten children and one of the girls, the surname being Nightingale, of course, had to be named Florence to reflect the honour of that lady.
Robert died in Maldon in 1894 but his tradition of painting was carried on by his son Basil who had, indeed, assisted his father with Edward's horse portrait. Nightingale Corner is at roughly the point where Robert had his studio.
Florence 1862-1945 married Joseph Stanton. They went to live in Lyme Regis where Joseph ran a shop and Florence a boarding house. Family tradition has it that the railway came to Lyme and brought day trippers and the like. This did not please Florence so she and Joseph sold up and emigrated to Sydney, New South Wales.
Joseph Stanton was my great uncle. He and Florence had no family and are now together in an unmarked grave. One of these days I shall visit. One of these days .....



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