Wilson Online Reference
Joseph Gillott, 1799-1872
Connection to Wilson
Biographical Details
Joseph Gillott was a wealthy Birmingham steel pen maker and art patron, the son of a workman in the cutlery trade. Gillott married Maria Mitchell, a sister of John and William Mitchell, the steel pen makers and he himself began the manufacture of such pens about 1830. In 1831, after experimenting with a way to speed up the process, Gillott registered his first patent for the manufacture of pens. His pens achieved world fame and his business rapidly increased.

Gillott began to buy paintings from an early age and his collection, housed in his homes in Westbourne Road, Edgbaston and at Great Stanmore near London, contained many gems of English art. Its great strength lay in paintings by J.M.W. Turner and William Etty, the latter being a special friend of the collector. Gillott appreciated Turner's talents before they had been generally recognised and purchased his paintings when others doubted their worth. The collection was also very rich in the work of Richard Wilson, sixteen of whose paintings he owned over his lifetime, including those listed below, and of John Linnell, David Roberts and others.
These were dispersed in a six-day sale at Christie's, 19,20,26 & 27 April and 3 & 4 May 1872. Fourteen Wilsons were included in Day 3, lots 226-239.

P109 Kew Gardens: The Pagoda and Palladian Bridge, Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
P130 Cilgerran Castle Magdalen College, Oxford;
P142C Tivoli: Temple of the Sibyl and the Campagna , Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massacusetts;
P163 Meleager and Atalanta , Tate;
P179B The Valley of the Mawddach, with Cader Idris beyond, Manchester City Galleries.