Three pages from a collection of nine scrapbooks compiled by the artist Emily Stregen (1817-1886)
I acquired a collection of nine scrapbooks compiled by the artist Emily Stregen, née Schmack, born in London 1817 and died in Modling, Austria 1886. Turning the
leaves of these books has proved a fascinating and enriching experience giving an insight into the life and thoughts of a privileged nineteenth century person
who travelled widely and married Baron Ludwig Stregen von Glauburg in 1861.
Emily's first album was completed in 1875 as she records:
Gift of my beloved husband and so christened by him. Contains treasures of my early life. Engravings out of a book belonging to my young unknown mother. Of my dearest sisters, Hariette Fisher my best
loved friend of my youth … how shall I name all those who have a place in my memory through this my favourite book. How many scenes in my uneventful life recur fresh and vivid as if of yesterday when I turn these dear pages - with which care I have retouched up many of the little pictures on these pages - often the merest trifles to me!
The albums are simply bound in brown leather titled 'Sammelsurium' in gilt lettering followed by the number in roman numerals; they measure 609 x 406 x 100mm (24 x 16 x 4in) and comprise 20 pages (40 leaves). Throughout, the charmingly sentimental Emily has returned to the albums to add title pages and explanatory
notes and it is through these that it was realised that there should be twelve albums; the 'missing' ones are seven, ten and twelve.
Q I would love to hear from anyone who knows the whereabouts or owns any of these absent volumes. Also, I have had little success in finding any more information on the life of this artist other than the tantalising glimpses she reveals in her albums and would especially appreciate any additions to the above however small and also to learn of any ephemera relating to her.