130. Schenck & McFarlane / A & C Black 1855


Besley's Route Book to Devon appeared in 1845 and five years later John Murray published the first of his long series of Devon Handbooks. Originally combining Devon with Cornwall he later split the counties into two separate volumes. The company of A & C Black of Edinburgh was not slow to follow, Devon & Cornwall making up one of their first county guides.

Established in Edinburgh in 1807 by Adam Black, the company became famous for its familiar series of green bound guides. They began shortly after Adam's nephew, Charles, joined the company to issue guides, firstly Scottish cities and northern England, then Wales and Ireland and from 1855 they issued county guides. The first county guides were of Derbyshire and Hampshire and this guide of Devon with Cornwall and the Scilly Isles.

The maps which were used were taken from Black’s Map of England and Wales which, as well as appearing in some atlases, was published as a folding map Black’s Road & Railway Travelling Map of England. This was engraved by S Hall, Bury St. Bloomsbury. This was the company of Sidney Hall who died in 1831; his daughter, Selina, took over the business after his death and Edward Weller (c.f.) acquired the business on the death of Selina.

From the Guide’s beginnings a map of the area was included, and in the 1855 issue it was a map of Devon and Cornwall engraved by Friedrick Schenck and William Husband M’Farlane. Although the title page is dated 1855, copies of the guide so far seen were issued later as revealed by careful scrutiny of the advertisements. The railways shown are somewhat anticipatory, Exmouth was opened in 1861 and Truro was not reached until 1865 although both are shown.How often the guide was reissued is not known; however, it must have seemed promising as the Black's published a new edition in 1862. This was issued as a combined volume including Dorset, Devon and Cornwall but also the counties were published separately (142). The series was so successful that editions were reprinted almost every year until the end of the century and a new Bartholomew map was included when the text was extensively revised in 1882 (150).

Emil Ernst Friedrich Theodor Schenck was born in Offenbach, Germany, in 1811 and died in Edinburgh in 1885. After training as lithographer and artist in Munich and Paris, he moved to Edinburgh in 1840 at the invitation of Samuel Leith. He proceeded to give talks on lithography to the R.S.S.A. and was later awarded their gold medal. He also wrote the article on lithography for the 8th edition of the Encyclopedia Britannica. At the time that the first Black’s guides of Devon appeared he was working with William Husband M’Farlane but the partnership was dissolved in 1859. Although Macfarlane1 continued as Schenck and M’Farlane, Schenck had set up again as Friedrich Schenck. His son, Frederick, was taken into partnership, but the partnership only lasted 1866-1868. Friedrich Schenck retired in 18752.

Size: 225 x 220 mm.                                                                                                                                       No scale [Scale 1M = 2.5 mm]

To Accompany BLACK'S GUIDE to DEVONSHIRE and CORNWALL. Signature: Schenck & McFarlane Edinr Graticulated border with degree lines.The border broken for Lands End. Inset map of SCILLY ISLES (Ae).  Railways are shown to Plymouth and Torquay, and projected to Truro, Falmouth, Barnstaple and Exmouth.

1.  1855  Black's Tourist’s Guide to Devonshire & Cornwall including the Scilly Isles  
    Edinburgh: A & C Black. 1855 (1856), 1855 (1858), 1855 (1859). BL3, KB; P4; P.

[1] The printer used both spellings: Macfarlane and McFarlane.

[2] Taken from the Scottish Book Trade Index (SBTI) online.

[3] The BL copy is hardback, the author´s is in publisher´s original printed paper covers. Both have an advertising section for 1856 and several adverts are dated 1856. The 1858/1859 copies have adverts dated for those years. No 1855 copy has been found.

[4] My thanks to Old Swan Books for bringing this edition to my notice: in their catalogue July 2009. An advert for Stevenson´s Canal and River Engineering is dated 1858.