This site celebrates the life and work of sculptor John Cassidy (1860 - 1939).
15 September 2020: Text size increased for easier reading
12 June 2020: Edward Colston: major update to include recent events.
16 August 2019: Henry Hunt: A commemoration of the Peterloo Massacre, 16 August 1819.
11 January 2019: Elijah Harwood Cooke: Plaque in St Clement's Church, Urmston
18 December 2018:
Rosa Leo Grindon: portrait plaque on display in Manchester Central Library
27 December 2017: James Wilson Southern feature updated
12 November 2017: New feature on the Rowland Thirlmere medallion
1 April 2017: New feature on the Edward Schunck memorial, University of Manchester
John Cassidy, by Reginald Barber (1900). Courtesy of Manchester Art Gallery
This site developed from Charlie's interest in the John Rylands Library, Manchester, and its statues. He created a small online exhibition there about John Cassidy, which led to contacts with Cassidy admirers in Scotland and Ireland, and in turn to the creation of this larger tribute. We are not professional historians; if you find inaccuracies here, please let us know.
'Of all the sculptors mentioned [in this book], John Cassidy is the most intriguing. A biography would focus directly on the little-researched world of the provincial sculptor. Given the range of his output - from statues and busts to war memorials and architectural sculpture - it would appear that versatility was one of the attributes needed by sculptors outside London if they were to survive.' - Derek Brumhead and Terry Wyke. A walk round Manchester sculptures. Walkround Books, 1990.
As you browse the features, you will find that we follow trains of thought and journeys inspired by Cassidy's work and the people he portrayed, as well as offering what biographical information we can discover, and illustrating and describing as many of his works as we can locate. We hope you find something of interest.
Special thanks to everyone who has helped with research and shown interest, especially Doug Cassidy, John Canner, John Doyle, Frances Lee Gargan, Sheila Crehan, Sheila Dewsbury, and the archivists and publications team at the John Rylands Library.
(Then again, if you are looking for his modern namesake
John Cassidy, magician and balloon sculptor, you want www.johncassidy.com.
For John Cassidy the ever-popular after-dinner entertainer