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James-GuthrieAN ARTIST who lived in Rhu and Helensburgh at various times was Sir James Guthrie, leader of the internationally renowned Glasgow Boys.

James Guthrie was born in Greenock in 1859, son of the Rev John Guthrie and his wife Ann. He studied law at Glasgow University but, with his father’s permission, left without a degree to pursue a career in art in 1877.

A RENOWNED artist who lived all his life in Helensburgh was a friend of the famous Glasgow Boys and a fringe member of the group.

James Whitelaw Hamilton, RSA, RSW, was one of a group of Glasgow  area painters — including Sir James Guthrie, E.A. Walton, and John Lavery — who painted in the burgh towards the end of the 19th century.

J.J.BellTHE reference room at Helensburgh Library has a large collection of books by writers with a local connection, and sixteen of them are by J.J.Bell.

He certainly is not the best known of the local authors, but he was prolific.

Bessie_MacNicol_Lady_with_a_FanA PAINTING by the famous ‘Glasgow Girl’ artist Bessie MacNicol — who had many links with Helensburgh —  changed hands in April 2011.

But purchaser Jim Smith, who enlisted the help of Helensburgh Heritage Trust in his quest to buy the painting entitled ‘Lady with a Fan’, had some difficulty in completing the acquisition.

Mary-Gilmour-wAS a remarkable tribute to his deceased wife, a Rhu man privately published in 1902 at considerable expense a book of verses she had written.

The book, entitled “Verses By Mary Gilmour’ was printed by Helensburgh printer J.Lindsay Laidlaw — a business purchased by the late Craig Jeffrey before he launched the Helensburgh Advertiser in 1957.

A.J.CroninEXACTLY 80 years ago a long novel of extraordinary power, mainly set in a thinly disguised Dumbarton, was being read eagerly not just in Scotland, but across the world.

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THE distinguished artist Sir Henry Raeburn RA painted a stunning portrait of a lady who spent part of her life in Rosneath . . . but did he paint another of the same lady?

That is the question asked by a distinguished art and antiques dealer who lives in Australia and owns what he thinks is the original version.

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