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Featured · Queen’s Park ·
FEBRUARY
8
2023

The Underground Map is a project which is creating street histories for the areas of London and surrounding counties lying inside the M25.

In a series of maps from the 1750s until the 1950s, you can see how London grew from a city which only reached as far as Park Lane into the post war megapolis we know today. There are now over 85 000 articles on all variety of locations including roads, houses, schools, pubs and palaces.

You can begin exploring by choosing a place from the dropdown list at the top.

As maps are displayed, click on the markers to view location articles.

Latest on The Underground Map...
Northumberland Avenue, WC2N
Northumberland Avenue runs from Trafalgar Square in the west to the Thames Embankment in the east. In 1608–09, Henry Howard, 1st Earl of Northampton built a house on the eastern side of the former Chapel and Hospital of St. Mary Rounceval, at Charing Cross, including gardens running to the River Thames and adjoining Scotland Yard to the west. The estate became the property of Algernon Percy, 10th Earl of Northumberland when he married Howard’s great-great niece, Lady Elizabeth, in 1642, whereupon it was known as Northumberland House.

In June 1874, the whole of Northumberland House was purchased by the Metropolitan Board of Works and demolished to form Northumberland Avenue, which would accommodate hotels. The road was part built on the parallel Northumberland Street.

Contemporary planning permissions forbade hotels to be taller than the width of the road they were on; consequently Northumberland Avenue was built with a wide carriageway. Part of the parallel Northumberland Street was demolished in order to make way for the avenue’s eastern...

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AUGUST
22
2022

 

Lover’s Walk, SE21
The walkway between Gallery Road and College Road has had many names There was a medieval field system between the two roads. In 1989, the Museum of London carried out an exploratory dig here to verify this. Amongt the fields, a path became known as Lovers Lane or Pensioners’ Walk.

In 1768 the right of way received an official name - The Grove. Grove Field lay on its south side.

Lover’s Walk had become its informal name by 1876 - in May that year, a news report recorded an incident here. In 2012, the Dulwich Estate agreed to calls for Lover’s Walk to be the formal name.

For cyclists it has yet another name - it is part of the Traylen Trail.


»read full article


AUGUST
21
2022

 

Vernon Yard, W11
Vernon Yard is a mews off of Portobello Road The name Portobello Road derived from the 1739 capture of Puerto Bello in Central America from the Spaniards by Admiral Vernon (1684-1757) with only six ships.

Vernon Yard is similarly named - it was known as Vernon Mews until 1932. It is a small L-shaped mews with its entrance under an archway between 117 and 119 Portobello Road. The terrace of houses in Portobello Road that backs onto the mews was originally called Vernon Terrace, and the mews served these houses.

Vernon Yard would have been built at the same time as Vernon Terrace, in the first half of the 1850s. The 1863 Ordnance Survey map shows two numbered units (Nos. 1 and 2) at the southern end of Vernon Yard; a further eight units (Nos. 3-10) along the western side) and one (No. 11) at the northern end. These were almost certainly stable blocks with accommodation above. On the eastern side, the map shows a number of unnumbered units which were probably warehouses or stabling belonging to the ad...
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AUGUST
20
2022

 

Rainham Road, NW10
Rainham Road, in Kensal Green, was laid out in 1895 The United Land Company bought a 6 acre triangle of land between Harrow Road and the Hampstead Junction railway in 1879, and an adjoining 21 acres from All Souls College in 1882. The whole area was laid out as high-density terraced housing and shops as far east as College Road.

The college leased 13 acres south of the L&NWR railway line to Edward Vigers, who by 1888 had laid out roads and started building 134 small terraced houses.

Rainham Road was let on building leases in 1895 and 30 houses had been built there by 1898.
»read full article


AUGUST
19
2022

 

Eton Avenue, NW3
Eton Avenue runs parallel with Adelaide Road, two blocks north From 1873 onward, William Willett and his son worked together as the chief building team in the area. In the early 1880s, they accepted the challenge of the Eton College estate by constructing Eton Avenue and surrounding roads.

The Willetts then moved on to both Lyndhurst Gardens and Wedderburn Road.

The houses set a precedent for aesthetic architecture in the speculative market. Drawing inspiration from English Queen Anne designs of the late 17th century, they were built with red brick, steep pitched roofs and tall chimneys. Dormers, gables, ornamental glass and ornamentation were other features that set them apart. Every single house was distinct.
»read full article





LATEST LONDON-WIDE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE PROJECT


Scott Hatton   
Added: 30 Jan 2023 11:28 GMT   

The Beatles on a London rooftop
The Beatles’ rooftop concert took place on the rooftop of the Apple Corps building in London. It was their final public performance as a band and was unannounced, attracting a crowd of onlookers. The concert lasted for 42 minutes and included nine songs. The concert is remembered as a seminal moment in the history of rock music and remains one of the most famous rock performances of all time.

Reply

Michael Upham   
Added: 16 Jan 2023 21:16 GMT   

Bala Place, SE16
My grandfather was born at 2 Bala Place.

Reply

   
Added: 15 Jan 2023 09:49 GMT   

The Bombing of Nant Street WW2
My uncle with his young son and baby daughter were killed in the bombing of Nant Street in WW2. His wife had gone to be with her mother whilst the bombing of the area was taking place, and so survived. Cannot imagine how she felt when she returned to see her home flattened and to be told of the death of her husband and children.


Reply
Lived here
Brian J MacIntyre   
Added: 8 Jan 2023 17:27 GMT   

Malcolm Davey at Raleigh House, Dolphin Square
My former partner, actor Malcolm Davey, lived at Raleigh House, Dolphin Square, for many years until his death. He was a wonderful human being and an even better friend. A somewhat underrated actor, but loved by many, including myself. I miss you terribly, Malcolm. Here’s to you and to History, our favourite subject.
Love Always - Brian J MacIntyre
Minnesota, USA

Reply
Lived here
Robert Burns   
Added: 5 Jan 2023 17:46 GMT   

1 Abourne Street
My mother, and my Aunt and my Aunt’s family lived at number 1 Abourne Street.
I remember visitingn my aunt Win Housego, and the Housego family there. If I remember correctly virtually opposite number 1, onthe corner was the Lord Amberley pub.

Reply
Comment
   
Added: 30 Dec 2022 21:41 GMT   

Southam Street, W10
do any one remember J&A DEMOLITON at harrow rd kensal green my dad work for them in a aec 6 wheel tipper got a photo of him in it

Reply
Comment
Fumblina   
Added: 26 Dec 2022 18:59 GMT   

Detailed history of Red Lion
I’m not the author but this blog by Dick Weindling and Marianne Colloms has loads of really clear information about the history of the Red Lion which people might appreciate.


Source: ‘Professor Morris’ and the Red Lion, Kilburn

Reply

BG   
Added: 20 Dec 2022 02:58 GMT   

Lancing Street, NW1
LANCING STREET

Reply


Click here to explore another London street
We now have 549 completed street histories and 46951 partial histories
Find streets or residential blocks within the M25 by clicking STREETS

AUGUST
31
2018

 

Acacia Road, EN2
Acacia Road was built as part of the Birkbeck Estate. Plans were submitted for houses in 1880 and these appear on an auctioneer’s plan of 1887.

Many of the roads on the Birkbeck Estate were named after flowers - Hawthorn Grove, Myrtle Grove, Lavender Road, Primrose Avenue, Rosemary Avenue, Violet Avenue and Woodbine Grove.
»read full article


AUGUST
29
2018

 

Lymington Road, NW6
Lymington Road was laid out over the grounds of the former Canterbury House. Lymington Road is a long road stretching from Fortune Green Road to the Finchley Road, emerging there opposite Arkwright Road.
»read full article


AUGUST
28
2018

 

Whittlebury Street, NW1
Whittlebury Street once laid to the west of Euston station. Euston Station was enlarged in 1875 with new platforms and railway lines on its western side. This entailed the loss of Whittlebury Street and a substantial tranche of the former burial ground at St James’s Gardens. A widened cutting also caused the demolition of the carriage sheds and part of Ampthill Square.
»read full article


AUGUST
27
2018

 

Jewish Military Museum
The Jewish Military Museum features exhibits about Jews serving in the British armed forces from the 18th century to the present day. The Association of Jewish Ex-Servicemen and Women founded the museum in 1996 as a memorial room in their headquarters in Stamford Hill had grown too large. Henry Morris had founded the room as a way of remembering those who had died in active service.

The museum holds a range of items relating to Jewish people who have served in the British armed forces, including uniforms, medals, photographs, letters and official documents. The collections cover conflicts from the 18th century to the present day, including Trafalgar, Waterloo, the Boer War, the First and Second World Wars, the Falklands War and the modern-day conflict in Afghanistan.

The museum moved to Harmony Way in 2004 and was accredited in 2010.
»read full article


AUGUST
26
2018

 

Hole In the Wall
The Hole In The Wall is a local Waterloo institution. The Hole In The Wall is actually quite a large hole in a wall, being situated in railway arches in front of Waterloo Station. It has been a watering hole of choice for commuters for many a year.

It is a long-time real ale outlet from the earliest days of CAMRA when real ale was rare in the area. The 1975 CAMRA Good Beer Guide described The Hole in the Wall as a recently refurbished railway-arch pub and beers on offer were Young’s, Bass Worthington, Brakspear and Ruddles.

It enjoys the frequent rumble of trains overhead. Folk music features on Sunday evenings.
»read full article


AUGUST
25
2018

 

Church Farmhouse Museum
Church Farmhouse Museum was situated in a 17th-century farmhouse in Hendon – the oldest surviving dwelling in Hendon. The building is a two-storey, red brick farmhouse with three gables and centrally placed chimney stacks. It is typical of 17th-century Middlesex vernacular architecture. A blue plaque commemorates Mark Lemon, who lived in the house as a child between 1817 and 1823. His book Tom Moody’s Tales includes recollections of his childhood in the area.

The house was owned by the Kempe family between 1688 and 1780, and later by the Dunlop family from 1869-1943. Andrew Dunlop came from Ayrshire to live in the house and worked the farm where he mainly produced hay for residents, businesses and horses.

In 1944 the farmhouse, outbuildings and adjoining land were bought by the council and in more recent years the museum was set up to show how an ordinary farming family used to live.

The museum had two period rooms, a period kitchen and scullery, two exhibition spaces and a large garden with a pond. Barnet Council withdrew funding from Church Far...
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AUGUST
23
2018

 

Holmshill School
Holmshill School was a secondary school in Borehamwood. Holmshill School was established like many other local schools in the early 1950s.

Having had a long life under its own name as Holmshill School in Thrift Farm Lane, with the millennium reorganisation of local schooling, it became the second site of Hertswood School, known as Hertswood Upper School.

In November 2013, the academy announced plans to move the entire school to new buildings on the Cowley Hill site, funded by the sale of the Thrift Farm Lane site which would be demolished for housing. In March 2014 plans were pushed back to extend the consultation period.

A planning application was submitted in December 2014 for the new academy, temporary classrooms and the residential development on the Thrift Farm Lane site. This was part of the current schedule to move all students to the Cowley Hill site in December 2015 and open the new academy in January 2018.
»read full article


AUGUST
22
2018

 

Somers Town
Somers Town is a district close to three main line rail termini - Euston, St Pancras and King’s Cross. Historically, the name Somers Town was used for the larger triangular area between the Pancras, Hampstead, and Euston Roads, but it is now taken to mean the rough rectangle bounded by Pancras Road, Euston Road and Eversholt Street.

Somers Town was named after Charles Cocks, 1st Baron Somers (1725–1806). The area was originally granted by William III to John Somers (1651–1716), Lord Chancellor and Baron Somers of Evesham.

In the mid 1750s the New Road was established to bypass the congestion of London; Somers Town lay immediately north of this east-west toll road. In 1784, the first housing was built at the Polygon amid fields, brick works and market gardens on the northern fringes of London. The site of the Polygon is now occupied by a block of council flats called Oakshott Court.

The Polygon deteriorated socially as the surrounding land was subsequently sold off in smaller lots for cheaper housing, especially after the start of constr...
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AUGUST
21
2018

 

Sutton High Street, SM1
What is now known as Sutton High Street was previously a turnpike road from London to Brighton. Carshalton Road (Cheam Road) was also an important road through Sutton, connecting a chain of old towns between Croydon and Guildford and for this reason was added as a turnpike road. The Cock Hotel was located at the crossroads, on the corner of Carshalton Road and ’Cock Hill’ (now the High Street) and was one of only two coaching inns in Sutton (the other was the Greyhound, further down the High Street). The inns provided a resting and changing place for horses as well as food and drink for passengers en route.

The original Cock Hotel and Cock ’Tap’ were built on the corner shortly after 1755 and remained there until 1896 when the old Cock Tap beer house was demolished and the ’new’ Cock Hotel was built in its place. Both the old and new hotels stood alongside for a brief period, before the old hotel was demolished. The old Tap and the new hotel were both set back from the road, creating a forecourt at the junction and this setback ...
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AUGUST
20
2018

 

Rye Lane, SE15
Rye Lane runs from Peckham High Street at the north, down to the corner of Copeland Road where The Nags Head sits at the south. Originally called ’South Street’ and now named after Peckham Rye Park, Rye Lane is a very different place now compared to the early 1700s, when Peckham was just a village of around 600 people on the outskirts of London. The street then would have been one of the main thoroughfares into London, bustling with market stalls, colourful gardens and rows of orchards growing produce for nearby London’s increasingly demanding population.

Back then, Peckham was one of the last stopping points for traders on their way into London, who would have stopped for the night at a local inn. Over the years, Rye Lane and the surrounding streets became an area of important industrial activity due to its links into London and access to markets, fields and even docks.

As Peckham became a sought-after area, Rye Lane developed into a major shopping destination (often referred to as the ‘Golden Mile’) which even rivalled the likes of Oxford Street. In 1867, Jones...
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AUGUST
18
2018

 

Ashton Playing Fields
Ashton Playing Fields are located on Woodford Green in Redbridge. Much land has been set aside in Woodford for recreational purposes. The Ashton playing fields at Woodford Bridge cover 50 acres with the facilities for athletics, cricket, football, and tennis being originally administered by a trust.

The facility, lying beside the M11, has four 11 a side grass and astroturf football pitches. The athletic facilities at Ashton Playing Fields include an eight lane running track along with a competition specification hammer, two long jump/triple jump pits and javelin and shot put areas. There are also high jump and pole vault facilities.

The athletics track and field facilities are used regularly by Woodford Green with Essex Ladies Athletic Club.
»read full article


AUGUST
17
2018

 

St Mary’s Churchyard
St Mary’s Churchyard is also known as ’Hendon Churchyard’. The churchyard is important archaeologically, as Roman artifacts have been found on the site and there is evidence of Anglo-Saxon settlement.

A church may have existed on the site as early as the ninth century, and there is an eleventh-century font still in use in the existing building. Parts of it date back to the thirteenth century, but there were successive alterations until it was extended in 1914-15.

The churchyard has many tombs and memorials, and there are cedar and yew trees. A line of headstones on either side of the path lead to the church door, and they form part of the best collection of eighteenth century headstones in London. Burials go back seven to eight hundred years, and as a result the soil contains fragments of bone. Part of it is gravelled, which is unusual in Christian graveyards.

The earliest surviving grave is that of Thomas Marsh dated 1624. Fine monuments include the grave of the engraver Abraham Raimbach, the ph...
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AUGUST
16
2018

 

Goodhall Street, NW10
Goodhall Street is part of the Old Oak Lane Estate. Goodhall Street is part of some rows of cottages had been built in 1889 by the LNWR for its employees in nearby Willesden Junction. Originally, the whole estate was simply called Railway Cottages. The London and Northwestern Railway, (LNWR) was the largest railway company in the country at the time.

Between 1915 and 1935, a new pub, The Fisherman’s Arms, appears to have replaced three houses on Old Oak Lane to serve the estate.

Late 19th century public health legislation had brought about general improvements in housing. Nevertheless the uniform rows of Old Oak made a fairly hard edged environment. Although there are subtle variations of facing brick and detail from one terrace to another, the overall impression is one of uniformity.
»read full article


AUGUST
15
2018

 

Spaniards End, NW3
Spaniards End lies behind the eponymous inn. By the end of the 1600s houses can be found around a pond on North End Way - these formed a village called North End. By 1710 there were 10 people paying 19 quit rents for 18 houses and cottages, and nearly three acres, almost all taken from the heath, at ’over the heath or North End’.

Two of the 18 houses were recently built cottages at ’Parkgate’, later called Spaniard’s End. The only other building in the area was Mother Huff’s, an inn later called the Shakespeare’s Head, fronting Spaniard’s Road. The house, where Mother Huff claimed in 1728 to have been for 50 years, was recorded in 1680 and may have been the New inn marked on the road through Cane Wood (Kenwood) to Highgate c. 1672.

The name Spaniard’s End was only gradually applied in connection with the nearby inn. Only by the end of the nineteenth century was it named on maps as such.

In Spaniard’s End, Heath End House was...
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AUGUST
14
2018

 

Battersea Bridge Road, SW11
The laying out of Battersea Bridge Road took place in several phases between the 1770s and 1850s. The laying out of Battersea Bridge Road took place in several phases between the 1770s and 1850s, the final southern stretch being the work of the Battersea Park Commissioners.

The Battersea Park area was formerly the heartland of Battersea Fields. It was intensively cultivated for strip farming and market gardens but thinly inhabited, as the land was low-lying and prone to flooding. Before Battersea Bridge was built in 1771–2, it contained only a scatter of houses and cottages, reached along lanes or tracks, and a few riverside hostelries such as the Red House towards Nine Elms.

The main east–west rights of way through the Fields included (from north to south): River Wall Road, now partly represented by the line of Parkgate Road; Marsh Lane, of which a stub survives as Ethelburga Street; and Surrey Lane, the main thoroughfare from Battersea village to Nine Elms, still present west of Battersea Bridge Road, but lost further eastwards. Linking these w...
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AUGUST
13
2018

 

Abbots Road, HA8
Abbots Road follows a footpath which stretched from Bunns Lane to Orange Hill House. The road was laid out in the late 1920s and became a useful connection to Mill Hill station from the new Burnt Oak estate.
»read full article


AUGUST
12
2018

 

Appleford Road, W10
Appleford Road was transformed post-war from a Victorian street to one dominated by housing blocks. Appleford Road runs from the Earl Derby on the corner of Southern Row and Bosworth Road, across Adair Row and into a dead end.

It contains a school - St Thomas’ Primary and a 1960s block: Appleford House. It is dominated though by the multistory Adair Tower.
»read full article


AUGUST
11
2018

 

Whitefield School
Whitefield School is a secondary school and sixth form. The school was built between 1953-54 on the site of the disused Hendon Metropolitan water treatment works, part of the original Clitterhouse Farm. It was originally a Secondary Modern School and opened in autumn 1954 later than originally intended. This gave pupils transferring from other schools in the then Borough of Hendon and surrounding areas an extra three weeks summer holiday. At the time of opening it had seven 1st year classes of between thirty and forty. Classes 1 and 2 first year had French or German in their curriculum, unusual at the time. Other older pupils transferred in to second, third and fourth year classes.

In 1954 the school grounds extended only as far east as the Clitterhouse Brook, a small tributary of the river Brent. Many years later the grounds extended east beyond the Brook to the boundary with Hendon Way. This area was the overgrown disused site of the settling ponds of the old water treatment works which were transformed into school playing...
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AUGUST
10
2018

 

Addington Square, SE5
Addington Square is a Georgian and Regency garden square which was named after Henry Addington, prime minister in the early 19th century. Addington Square is unusually well-preserved, and a conservation area with the houses that make up the east, south and west sides of the square listed Grade II. The north side is newly refurbished tennis courts.

Because three sides of the square back onto Burgess Park and there is no through traffic, it is a peaceful space popular with lunchtime office workers. This controlled access, period buildings and proximity to central London also make it popular with film crews.

The buildings were constructed between the later 18th century and early 19th century. The square is not composed entirely of terraced properties neither are all the buildings of similar height or architectural treatment.

In the 1960s the square was notorious as the base of the Richardson Gang, a south London rival to the Kray twins. They ran a private drinking club from the square, which had “Mad” Frankie Fraser and two dancing bears in residence. According to the gang...
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AUGUST
10
2018

 

Watford Junction
Watford Junction was formerly the northernmost station of the Bakerloo Line. The first station in Watford was north of St Albans Road, but Watford Junction opened with the line to St Albans on 5 May 1858. The station was rebuilt in 1909, and was extensively redeveloped in the 1980s.

The Bakerloo Line was extended to Watford Junction in 1917, providing shared services with mainline electric trains which served London Euston and Broad Street stations. However since 1982, the line north of Harrow & Wealdstone station has only been served by what is now the London Overground service from Euston station; this service uses these DC lines for its "all stations" local service.
»read full article


AUGUST
9
2018

 

Watford High Street
Watford High Street station was opened by the Watford and Rickmansworth Railway on 1 October 1862. In 1912 a branch was opened from Watford High Street to Croxley Green. The line came under the ownership of London and North Western Railway which in turn was absorbed into the London, Midland and Scottish Railway in 1923.

The Bakerloo Line was extended through this station to Watford Junction in 1917, but in 1982 it was cut back to Harrow & Wealdstone leaving the section north of there served only by British Rail’s Watford DC Line which is now part of the London Overground network.
»read full article


AUGUST
8
2018

 

Abingdon Street, SW1P
Abingdon Street has linked Old Palace Yard and Millbank since at least 1593. At the northern end stood the South Gate of the Palace of Westminster. At the southern end was the ditch which marked the boundary of Thorney Island. Now, Great College Street marks this former boundary.

The street was briefly known as Lindsay Lane but by 1750 was known as Dirty Lane.

Around 1690, a mansion called Lindsay House was situated at the south-west end of the street. This was later the residence of the Earl of Abingdon. When the King came to parliament, the state coach drawn by eight horses used to turn round in the yard of the house.

In 1750, after an Act of Parliament it was widened and renamed Abingdon Street as part of the general approach improvements to the new Westminster Bridge.

From about 1820 Thomas Telford lived at No. 24. where he died in 1834. In 1932 Harold Clunn described one long terrace of shabby Georgian houses, largely inhabited by Members of Parliament.

Only four houses survived t...
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AUGUST
4
2018

 

Kilburn Priory, NW6
Kilburn Priory is now a road - - it was once the site of a real priory Kilburn Priory itself, which dated from 1134 - the days of Henry I.

The priory was situated where the Westbourne crossed at the present site of the junction of Kilburn High Road and Belsize Road. It had been constructed on the location of the cell of a hermit known as Godwyn and was home to the community of Augustinian canonesses.

The priory, was dedicated to the “Blessed Virgin Mary and St. John the Baptist”, became a renowned resting place for pilgrims stopping by on their way to St Albans. The river supplied the Priory’s moat and provided the inhabitants with water and fish until the dissolution of the monasteries in 1536 when the building was destroyed.

Priory lands incorporated a mansion and a guesthouse or hostium which may have constituted the basis of the Red Lion pub (believed to have been founded in 1444) and the Bell Inn which opened in about 1600.
»read full article


AUGUST
1
2018

 

Menelik Road, NW2
Menelik Road runs from Westbere Road to Minster Road. In the 1890s, the Powell-Cotton family cashed in on their land holdings which laid to the east of the Edgware Road. Various new roads were named after places in Kent near to Quex House - the Powell-Cotton family seat: Richborough Road (1885), Minster Road (1891), Ebbsfleet Road (1893), Westbere Road (1893), Sarre Road (1896) and Manstone Road (1899).

One of the stalwarts of the family was Major Percy Horace Gordon Powell-Cotton (1866-1940) who travelled widely in Africa. The Major made over 28 expeditions to Africa. Powell-Cotton is noted for bringing an extraordinary number of animal specimens back from his travels across Africa, potentially creating the largest collection of game ever shot by one man. Despite this, Powell-Cotton was an early conservationist, helping categorise a wide number of species across the globe.

In 1900, Powell-Cotton met with Emperor Menelik II, who granted him permission to hunt across Ethiopia. Powell-Cotton’s subsequ...
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