City Theatre opposite the Jail, J H Anderson, the Wizard of the North by William Simpson (1823-1899).
The City Theatre was built in 1845 by John Henry Anderson, known as "The Wizard of the North" during his earlier career as a travelling conjurer. The theatre had a capacity of 5,000 and occupied a plot on Jail Square at the edge of Glasgow Green, opposite the Justiciary Buildings at the foot of the Saltmarket. The theatre burned down on 18 November 1845, five months after opening. The building in the background is Cooke's Circus, which was to burn down on 2 December that year.
This watercolour is one in a series of fifty-five painted by Simpson between 1893 and 1898. Most are based on sketches completed fifty years earlier and which appeared as black and white illustrations in Views and Notices of Glasgow in Former Times, published in 1848 by Allan & Ferguson.
Reference: 892ar/ 1889.2.ar
Reproduced with the permission of Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Museums
Allan & Ferguson, artists, City Theatre, conjurers, Cooke's Circus, fires, Glasgow Green, paintings, ruins, theatres, watercolours