The Library of Nineteenth-Century Photography

Lady Wentworth and Mrs Turner

Lady Wentworth and Mrs Turner

A carte-de-visite portrait of two sisters, identified by a pencilled inscription verso as ‘Lady Wentworth and Miss Harriot [sic]’.

Lady Wentworth, seen here on the left, was the first wife of Lord Byron’s grandson Ralph Gordon Noel King-Milbanke, later 2nd Earl of Lovelace. She was born Fannie Heriot in 1852, the daughter of Reverend George Heriot, Curate of St Anne’s in Newcastle. The couple were married on 25 August 1869 but separated in 1871. A suit of divorce in 1873 appears to have failed. Their only child Ada Mary Milbanke (1870–1917) was brought up by her aunt, Lady Anne Blunt. Lady Wentworth died at her residence in Norwood on 13 July 1878, aged only 25.

I’ve seen the portrait elsewhere with the sitters identified as ‘Lady Wentworth and Mrs Turner’, so the other Miss Heriot must have married a Mr Turner. According to the 1861 census, Fannie had two older sisters, Mary K. Heriot, four years her senior, and Maria C. Heriot, three years her senior.

In 1874 Maria Colclough Heriot married Walter John Turner. The marriage was registered at West Ham in Essex. On 21 June 1883 at St George's Hanover Square she married again. Her second husband was the splendidly named Carleton Valiant Blyth. She died in 1887, aged only 36. The death was registered in the district of Thanet in Kent.

A catalogue for the exhibition at the Royal Photographic Society in 1876 has two photographs listed one after the other (entries 232 and 233), the first a portrait of Lady Wentworth, the second a portrait of Mrs Turner, both by Lombardi and Co.

Photographed by William and Daniel Downey of Newcastle and London.


Code: 124599
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© Paul Frecker 2018