The Mystery Man outside the Palace

D.Smith, Cart&man, 300dpi

We are puzzled by this intriguing photograph and hope that someone can identify the man sitting in his ‘cart’ outside the gateway to the Archbishop’s Palace.  Who is he and what can he be delivering – if anything – in this unusual vehicle? The Strawberry Gothick front of the Palace, seen through the gateway, is almost covered in ivy which helps date the image to the mid-to-late 1930s.

The photograph came from David Smith who found it in his great aunt’s belongings after she died in 1995.  David does not think that his great aunt, MISS VIOLET AIR, had any connection with Bishopthorpe.  She was a member of the well-known Air family of York.  Violet’s father owned a coal business in Cherry Street, off Bishopthorpe Road.  One of her brothers brought coal by barge from the West Riding and another brother was landlord of The Globe Inn, situated in the Shambles.  The family also operated the rowing boats from King’s Staithe and New Walk.  Violet came from an interesting family but does it have any connection with this photograph?

Please get in touch by adding a comment above, or email us at historygroup@bishopthorpe.net if you can throw any light on the man or his cart.

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