THE LATE MR JOHN HORSBURGH
"The death has occurred at
114 Thirlstane Road, of Mr John Horsburgh FRSSA, portrait painter and
Born in Eddleston in Peeblesshire in 1835,
Mr Horsburgh was a son of the late Mr John Horsburgh, who was for some
time a Baptist pastor at Galashiels.
He came to Edinburgh in early life, and was
apprenticed in the silk mercer business of Mr Duncan McLaren, who
entered Parliament and married a daughter of John Bright.
Mr Horsburgh soon turned his attention to
photography, then emerging from the early form of daguerreotype and
He commenced with a studio in the South
Bridge, Edinburgh, but removed to 17 Princes Street and again to 131
Princes Street, where he continued until 1898.
His success in the association of
photography and portrait painting brought him including Queen Victoria,
His Royal Highness the Duke of Cambridge and members of many noble and
His interest in portraiture turned his
attention to the value of the works of Sir Henry Raeburn, and in 1876 he
originated the Raeburn Exhibition in Edinburgh.
Among many interesting commissions carried
through during Mr Horsburgh's long business career may be cited his work
on the illustrations of the HMS Challenger expedition, when he produced
by photo-mechanical methods, then in their infancy, the many thousand
prints required for the report.
Princes Street Gardens
As one of the proprietors of West Princes
Street Gardens, he was a member of the Committee authorised to hand over
these Gardens to the town for the public benefit.
A picturesque and well-known figure in
Edinburgh for many years, Mr Horsburgh was a very old member of the
He was also a Freemason, being made a member
of the Roman Eagle Lodge, Edinbrugh, about 1860.
His own recreation was in his fondness for a
horse and he rode and drove a great deal in his younger days.
He celebrated his golden wedding in 1906.
Mr Horsburgh who was predeceased by his wife leaves a grown-up family of
four sons and four daughters."
[Obituary, The Scotsman: October 1 1924, p.8]