Scharf, coincidentally, was the subject of a book by Jackson-Harris’ late husband, Peter Jackson-Harris, the renowned collector of and writer on London ephemera.
George Scharf’s London (1987) featured a selection of the artist’s drawings of the Dickensian city. Scharf was also the subject of an exhibition at Sir John Soane’s Museum in London in 2009.
The artist made London both his home and his principal subject matter after arriving in England in 1816. He married his landlady’s sister and settled in the artistic quarter of St Martin’s Lane.
Scharf viewed the teeming metropolis with the eye of an outsider, focusing on the details of everyday London life: the throngs of tradesmen, stagecoaches loaded with luggage and passengers in Piccadilly and itinerant entertainers.
Living apart from his family, he died in rather impoverished circumstances in 1860 and his widow sold more than 1000 of his drawings and watercolours to the British Museum.
If the sketchbook is not sold before the Ephemera Society’s Summer Fair at the Bloomsbury Holiday Inn in Coram Street, London WC1, on Sunday, June 4, Jackson-Harris will offer it for sale at the fair. She trades as Quadrille and is chair of the Ephemera Society.
The next Sunbury Antiques Market is on Tuesday, May 30.