Dallas works in focus in new exhibition

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An new exhibition opens in Garvagh Community Building on May 19 organised by Garvagh Museum.

It features the work of the well known photographer George Dallas who recorded images of people and places around the closing years of the 19th century and into the 20th century.

His photographs have left a lasting record of an era now long forgotten.

George Dallas was born in 1858 in Kurin, Garvagh.

He was a watchmaker by trade and set up a business in Maghera Street, Kilrea in 1879.

Around 1880 he started a photography business mainly in portraiture.

He travelled extensively throughout the counties of Derry and Antrim on a penny farthing bicycle with his equipment on his back.

This was no mean feat given the size of the equipment used in those days.

His business flourished and he had studios in Garvagh, Kilrea, Maghera and Coleraine.

His work was varied and interesting and many of his photographs appeared in the local newspapers of the day.

One of his assignments was to photograph a murder scene at Tamneyrankin in 1905 taking pictures of the houses where the victim and the suspect lived and where the body was found.

His photographs of the interior of Garvagh House show an era of elegant living by Lord Garvagh and his family.

They give a glimpse of life that no longer exists with the disappearance of Garvagh House.

Around 1910 George centred his business in Garvagh where he had a jewellery shop as well as the photography business.

He died in 1948 aged 90.

His son William James carried on the business as a jeweller, stationer, photographer and printer until his death in 1955.

Wilbert Patterson, also from Garvagh, has long had an interest in the Dallas collection of photographs.

He has put together a collection of 130 photographs kindly donated by the Dallas family.

This exhibition opens in the Garvagh Community Building, Main Street, Garvagh this Friday, May 19 at 7.30pm.

Opening times are as follows:

Monday - Friday from 4pm-9pm and Saturday 10am to 4pm. Please note that the exhibition is closed on Wednesdays. The exhibition runs until May 27.