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Joseph Paxton's First Patron

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DEVONSHIRE William Cavendish, 6th Duke - Autograph Letter Signed arranging a visit to Lismore

William Cavendish, 6th Duke of Devonshire had the most glamorous mother in 18th century England. Little wonder, therefore, that his own story is overshadowed by Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire.
But he has more than enough to his credit. A prominent Whig, very much in the mould of his mother's friend Charles James Fox, he was a supporter of the abolition of slavery.
He made extensive alterations to the family residence in Ireland, Lismore Castle, turning it into the fashionable Gothic style.
Best of all, though, it was his interest in gardens that prompted him to employ a then almost unknown young man as head gardener at Chatsworth. The young man was Joseph Paxton, and he not only cared for the magnificent gardens but also built a number of greenhouses there.
His skill with greenhouses paid off in grand style a quarter of a century later when he designed that monument to Victorian enterprise, the Crystal Palace.

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