1810 - 1893

Orlando Whistlecraft

Orlando Whistlecraft was born at The Lodge, Wetheringsett, Suffolk on 11 November 1810, son of James Whistlecraft (January 1779-14 October 1867), a farmer and later a carpenter and builder, and his wife Susan Brooke née English (1768-2 January 1847), widow of Thomas Brooke with four children, who married at Thwaite, Suffolk on 5 January 1810. When Orlando was seven years old, he suffered from rheumatic fever and was left with paralysis right arm and leg and had to learn to write with his left hand. Educated at a school kept by Thomas Bell at Stowmarket and at the school of Robert Burcham Clamp in St Nicholas Street, Ipswich where he won the Academy drawing prize in 1826. He wrote for the 'Ipswich Journal' and 'Suffolk Chronicle' and, although only 16, became a member of the Ipswich Mechanic’s Institute attending many scientific lectures. After a period of teaching for Clamp, he made a living in journalism, writing pamphlets and weather almanacs. In 1829 he returned to live at Thwaite where he opened a school and on 28 March 1834 married at St George's Church, Thwaite, Elizabeth Kate Rush (8 April 1810-8 February 1894). Orlando gave up his school and, during 1843-1851, was in partnership with his brother James (1803-1854) trading as James & Orlando Whistlecraft, stationers & general shopkeepers at Thwaite. In 1855, was on his own account as druggist, stationer, author & publisher, living with his wife in a small cottage on the Ipswich Road, Thwaite with four of their six children who were baptised at Thwaite, Diana Elizabeth on 10 August 1834; Orlando, junr on 14 May 1837; Amelia Susan and Arthur on 17 July 1850, the two other children were Julia Salus born 1836 and Caroline born 1839. An amateur artist and in 1865, a grocer, meteorologist, author of weather almanacks & natural history and in 1881, a grocer, author & publisher still living at the shop on the Ipswich Road, Thwaite with his 70-year-old wife Elizabeth, who was born at Stonham Parva, Suffolk and two unmarried children, 42-year-old Caroline, a dressmaker and 40-year-old Arthur, a draper’s assistant. 1883-1893 a shopkeeper at the same address where he died in some poverty on 27 February 1893 and buried at Thwaite St George Church on 3 March 1893, after which the business was continued by his wife, but she followed Orlando on 8 February 1894, aged 83. (Copsey-Suffolk Book Trades. 2012)

Works by This Artist