Thomas Annan

The Duchray Valley, Looking North from South End of the Syphon Pipes (Published 1877)

About this artwork

This picture is part of a series of photographs showing the remarkable engineering work designed to give Glasgow a supply of fresh water. A network of tunnels and aqueducts crisscrossed the Duchray Valley, carrying 50,000,000 gallons of water a day to the city, from Loch Katrine, made famous by Sir Walter Scott's poem, 'The Lady of the Lake'. In the opinion of one engineer at the time the Duchray aqueduct surpassed 'the greatest of the nine famous aqueducts which fed the city of Rome'.

Thomas Annan

Thomas Annan

Having begun his career as a lithographic writer and engraver on a local newspaper in Fife, Thomas Annan set up a studio as a professional photographer in 1855. He founded his own photographic printing works in Hamilton in 1859 and by 1862 had begun to establish a reputation for photographing works of art. In 1866 he purchased the carbon process patent rights for Scotland and in 1883 he secured the British rights for photogravure. Between 1868 and 1871 he executed a commission from the City of Glasgow to photograph the slums of the old town before their demolition.