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Photograph - Close No. 118, High Street. 1868
  • Close No. 118, High Street. 1868
    Annan, Thomas, born 1829
  • Enlarge image

Close No. 118, High Street. 1868

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Glasgow (photographed)

  • Date:

    1868 (photographed)
    1900 (printed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Annan, Thomas, born 1829 (photographers)

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case X, shelf 31, box C

The Glasgow City Improvements Act was passed in 1866 to enable the municipal authorities to clear dilapidated areas of the city. The trustees of the improvements scheme commissioned Thomas Annan to record the old buildings before they were demolished. Annan seems to have set up this photograph to suggest the dirty and cramped conditions in the close, posing the inhabitants at the back behind the open drain. Yet this somewhat claustrophobic composition is animated by apparently unplanned events. People move into the frame, perhaps unaware of the photographer's presence, while others peer curiously at him out of windows. The result is a vivid record of life in this overcrowded tenement.

Physical description

Photograph of a a street with figues at the end of an alley

Place of Origin

Glasgow (photographed)


1868 (photographed)
1900 (printed)


Annan, Thomas, born 1829 (photographers)

Materials and Techniques



Height: 22 cm, Width: 17.5 cm

Descriptive line

19thC; Annan Thomas, Close no 118, High St, Glasgow



Subjects depicted

Housing; Tenements; Slums


Photographs; Scotland


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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