Art News

Rats, Murder, and Secret Wartime Bunkers ~ National Portrait Gallery Goes Online

Photograph showing the war-time portrait storage in the Billiard Room at Mentmore House, with warders, 1940's. © National Portrait Gallery, London

LONDON.- The National Portrait Gallery has
launched its archive catalogue on the web, revealing to a wider audience
fascinating stories about the Gallery’s activities since it was founded in
An Edwardian murder and suicide in the public galleries, an
outbreak of rats and the extraordinary lengths directors went to in order to
ensure the safety of the nation’s portraits during the First and Second World
Wars are among the discoveries available at the click of a button. Among the
most important papers soon to be included are those of Sir George Scharf, the
first Secretary, Keeper and Director of the National Portrait Gallery. A recent
grant to catalogue his papers by the National Cataloguing Grants Programme for
Archives has enabled the Gallery to recruit for an Archivist.