- The drawings from the office of Sir John Soane
Samuel Acton (c.1773-1837) was the Surveyor to the Commissioners of Sewers for the City of London. He became a student at the Royal Academy in 1790 and won the Silver Medal in 1794. He also exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1791 to 1802. In 1822 he was the President of the Surveyor's Club (Colvin). The drawings here date from 1825 but the correspondence is dated April 1829, when the Bank was asked to review Acton's designs for widening and improving the west end of Lothbury. Acton met with the Directors to present the plans, as written on the attached letter 1a, and he and a Mr Carter visited Soane to discuss the plans, as documented in 1b-d.
Sir John Soane's collection includes some 30,000 architectural, design and topographical drawings which is a very important resource for scholars worldwide. His was the first architect’s collection to attempt to preserve the best in design for the architectural profession in the future, and it did so by assembling as exemplars surviving drawings by great Renaissance masters and by the leading architects in Britain in the 17th and 18th centuries and his near contemporaries such as Sir William Chambers, Robert Adam and George Dance the Younger. These drawings sit side by side with 9,000 drawings in Soane’s own hand or those of the pupils in his office, covering his early work as a student, his time in Italy and the drawings produced in the course of his architectural practice from 1780 until the 1830s.
Browse (via the vertical menu to the left) and search results for Drawings include a mixture of Concise catalogue records – drawn from an outline list of the collection – and fuller records where drawings have been catalogued in more detail (an ongoing process).