Ten pounds and two shillings (in old money) was surely a huge sum to find when you consider a dozen walking stick handles were selling for approximately twenty shillings (£1.00).
This from The Echo, Thursday, January 15, 1903;
The trial provides many interesting snippets about Ferdinand seniors working life and his rather quarrelsome nature. His counsel described him as ‘one of the most expert carvers in London’, and argued that much of the commotion on the night of 31st December 1902 was caused by the police tripping over boards of pear wood stacked in the hallway. In the ensuing melee Police constable Hyde also had an unhappy encounter with something he described as a rapier. This was probably one of the narrow blades typically used in sword sticks. The trial is well document online and for anyone with an interest in the details, the full account can be read here. (This is a full day’s court proceedings so be prepared to scroll through the pages to find the case.)
A lot has been written on the Internet and elsewhere about Ferdinand seniors irascible nature but for all that he was an incredibly talented man. This image of an automated cockatoo's head carved from ivory surely proves the point.
Ivory - an emotive subject.
Find my past, www.findmypast.co.uk/
The British Newspaper Archive, www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk
Online archives at Christie's and Sotheby's auctions.
The proceedings of the Old Bailey www.oldbaileyonline.org
In good hands 250 years of craftsmanship by Katherine Prior ISBN 978-1-898565-09-3