Thomas Malton 1726-1801
It was very interesting to be contacted via the website recently by a Canadian researcher who is a descendant of Thomas Malton, who wrote The Complete Book of Perspective in 1775. The researcher had got in touch as Henry Robert Ince and James Gray Mayhew were mentioned in James Malton's will, this James being the son of Thomas Malton. James Mayhew was an executor of the will and it was proved on the oath of Henry Robert Ince in 1803. According to the will, all three were 'well acquainted' and 'dear friends'.
As the sons of William Ince and John Mayhew were close friends of Thomas Malton's son, it raised the question of whether the older generation were also close. We know that William Ince subscribed to Thomas's book, and it seems likely that they were already acquainted as two drawings by William in the Universal System for Household Furniture, published 1762, actually include the perspective - these are the card tables, items LII and LIII. Thomas Malton was based in Drury Lane as a cabinet-maker, so is likely to have known William Ince who did his apprenticeship round the corner in King Street, Covent Garden, and also lived in the area as a child. Thomas Malton, John Mayhew and William Ince were all Freemasons, though members of different lodges. James Malton was also a Freemason, and John Mayhew Jnr was a member of the same Lodge - Moderns Grand Lodge.
Thomas Malton was an architectural draughtsman and teacher of perspective in both London and Dublin. He exhibited architectural drawings at the Royal Academy from a London address in 1772-75 and again in 1785, and then settled permanently in Dublin.
A touch of serendipity is that the engraving of St George's Church, Hanover Square in this website is by Thomas Malton's son Thomas, who was an English painter of architectural views, and an engraver. J M W Turner was one of the pupils who attended his evening drawing classes.
Sarah Ingle is the great great great great grand-daughter of William Ince and has been researching her family history for a number of years. She thoroughly enjoyed the detective work involved in tracing William’s lineage.