This chronology comes from the author's 1979 exhibition catalogue, Clarkson Stanfield, 1793-1867 (see bibliography). It includes selected plays decorated by Stanfield, the dates given referring to their first performances. All performances on 26th-27th December are of Christmas pantomimes or spectacles.

Drury Lane = Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.  Covent Garden = Theatre Royal, Covent Garden


Stanfield's father, James Field Stanfield, born Dublin (d. 1824).


J. F. Stanfield in Benin during a slaving voyage, Liverpool-Africa-West Indies-Liverpool.


October. J. F. Stanfield in London.


J. F. Stanfield on Bath Stage.


25th October. J. F. Stanfield married to Mary Hoad, Cheltenham.


J. F. Stanfield on the Beverley-Richmond circuit. His Observations on a Guinea Voyage published.


J. F. Stanfield on Scarborough circuit. His poem The Guinea Voyage published.

Settles in Sunderland this year (?).


J. F. Stanfield's Life of Howard, published anonymously by W. Thompson, Newcastle upon Tyne.


March. J. F. Stanfield begins wine and spirit business, at 18 High Street East, Sunderland.


3rd December. CLARKSON STANFIELD born. Fifth child of J. F. Stanfield.


His father resumes regular acting.


His father and Mr. Graham direct travelling acting company in North East and Scotland.


11th January. Stanfield's mother dies.

29th October. His father marries Maria Kell (d. 1816) and has at least five more children.


William James Stanfield born (d. 1827; scene painter).

January-March. Stanfield plays child parts at Newcastle-upon-Tyne.


December;? Stanfield plays child parts at Sunderland.


Apprenticed to an heraldic painter in Edinburgh.


Runs away from apprenticeship due to drunkenness of his master's wife.

Goes to sea in a collier out of Hartley or Seaton Sluice.


His elder sister Mary on Edinburgh stage (to 1822).


In the brig Alexander of Shields. 31st July; impressed into Navy in London under the alias 'Roderick Bland. 25th August; Drafted to H.M.S. Namur, Sheerness.


June. J. F. Stanfield's Essay on Biography published. December; Douglas Jerrold joins Namur as eleven year old volunteer.


June-July. Decorates Admiral's ballroom, Sheerness. Offer of a dockyard job fails to materialise. His health breaks down and he is discharged from Navy on 9th December.


3rd April. Sails for Whampoa, China, as seamen in Indiaman Warley.

7th September-7th December at Whampoa. Returns via St. Helena.


2nd May. Leaves Warley in London. Visits family in Scotland and misses his ship for a voyage to India.

August. Engaged as a scene painter in East London Theatre, Wellclose Square, Stepney. Lives variously in Bow and White Horse Lane, Mile End.


June. Works part time at Highgate Theatre for Henry Jackman.


11th May. Glossop opens Royal Coburg Theatre, Lambeth. Scruton, Morris and Stanfield engaged under J. T. Serres for first season.

20th July. Married to Mary Hutchinson, actress, at St. Dunstan's Stepney. September 1818-September 1819. Both he and wife working at East London Theatre.


Summer. Moves to 14 Pratt Street, Lambeth.

25th July. Son Clarkson William born (d. 1853).

25th October January 1820. Working for Glossop and Barrymore at Asdey's


February. A Study from Nature, first exhibited work at British Institution.

May. A River Scene, first exhibited work at Royal Academy.

November. Meets David Roberts while on tour with Astley's at Edinburgh Pantheon.


February. Works with the Grieves and Roberts at Theatre Royal, Edinburgh. 14th March. Paints Therese, The Orphan of Geneva. Exhibited three works at Edinburgh Fine Arts Institution: Watermill; Grey friars' Church Yard; Coast Scene.

23rd April-August. Working at Astley's. Moves to 8 Mount Gardens, Lambeth.

15th October-February 1823. Working at Coburg, partly with Charles Tomkins.

31st October. Daughter Mary Elizabeth born (d. 1854).

27th November, c. Death of his wife.


August-September. Roberts joins Stanfield at Coburg for Guy Fawkes (23rd September). Siann&iu nominally scenic director of East London Theatre. Moves to 18 Bishop's Walk, Lambeth.

26th December. With Roberts and Alexander Nasmyth paints scenes for Elliston's unsuccessful pantomime Gog and Magog at Drury Lane. Stanfield and Barrymore revise this into the successful Golden Axe (6th January).


14th January, Engaged at Drury Lane, £8 per week for three years.

May. Foundation member of Society of British Artists.

June-July. ? Short tour in Belgium, on the Rhine and in Holland.

27th October. The Cataract of the Ganges at Drury Lane.

26th December. Moving diorama of Plymouth in The Flying Chest at Drury Lane.


19th April. Eidophusikon diorama in Zoroaster at Drury Lane.

9th May. Death of his father in Lambeth.

May-June. Repaints Plymouth diorama for Bunn at Birmingham Theatre Royal.

With Roberts paints panorama of Destruction of Algiers (1816) for exhibition on continent including Amsterdam and Cologne (1825-27).

25th July-September. Tour with William Brockedon in French, Swiss and Italian Alps.

10th November. Der Freischutz at Drury Lane.


Marries Rebecca Adcock (1807-75).

April 1825. Sketching on River Seine.

16th May. Soane's Faustus (adapted from Goethe).

26th December. Naumetabolia panorama of Adventures of a Ship of War in Jack of All Trades at Drury Lane.


Moves to 3 Princes Street, Lambeth.

February. His Poecilorama at the Egyptian Hall, Piccadilly; miniature dioramic views of Rouen, Netley Abbey, Chateau de Chillon, Lindisfarne, Turin, London in 1590. Son Henry James Field born (d. 1838).

April. Roberts leaves Drury Lane.

c. 15th May. Stanfield awarded a testimonial silver vase by Drury Lane committee for his scenic skill.

24th July. His outdoor set-piece Ruins of an Italian Abbey by Moonlight seen at Vauxhall Gardens.


c. 7th February. Death of his brother William in Lambeth. First plates for Cooke's London and its Vicinity. Sketching at Hastings.


With Roberts et al. paints panorama of Battle of Navarino (1827) for showing on continent. Moves to 14 Buckingham Street, Strand.


Vice-President of Society of British Artists.

Wreckers off Forte Rouge wins British Institution £50 premium.

8th March. His two dioramic pictures, Wreck of an Indiaman, Lake Maggiore with two by Roberts, form 'The British Diorama' at Royal Bazaar, Oxford Street.

27th April. Panoramic views of the Rhine in The Dumb Savoyard and his Monkey at Drury Lane.

1st May. Son George Clarkson born. Sketching on south coast and Isle of Wight.

14th July. Leaves for Holland and Germany but is taken ill at Cassel. Convalesces at Calais and Boulogne until August.

26th December. Diorama of 'Spithead to Gibraltar' in The Queen Bee at Drury Lane.


President of Society of British Artists.

March. Elected to 'The Sketching Society'.

28 May. His new dioramic picture of York with the Cathedral on Fire at the Royal Bazaar catches fire and burns down the building.

August-September. On tour in Cornwall and Devon.

18th November. Planche's The Brigand at Drury Lane.

26th December. Diorama of Windsor in Jack in the Box at Drury Lane.


Further dioramic views for new Royal Bazaar.

May. St. Michael's Mount at Royal Academy wins him two commissions from William IV.

June. Resigns from Society of British Artists.

1st August. Son James Field born (d. 1871).

20th August-October. Tours through Holland, down Rhine to Venice, returns through France.

November. Defeated at A.R.A election

27th December. Diorama 'Military Pass of the Simplon' (Alpine views) in Davy Jones at Drury Lane.


1st August. Sketches opening of new London Bridge for King.

September. At Hastings.

12th August. Foundation member of Garrick Club.

7th November. Defeated at A.R.A. election. Heath's Annual for 1832,

Italy, the Tyrol and the Rhine, published.

26th December. Diorama of Venice in Harlequin and Little Thumb at Drury Lane.


Son John Campbell born (dates not known).


Moves to 36 Mornington Crescent, Hampstead Road.

Elected to Athenaeum Club.

25th January. Jerrold's The Rent Day at Drury Lane.

Opening of New London Bridge. Click on image to enlarge it.

Opening of New London Bridge at Royal Academy.

10th August-?September. Tour with family on French Channel coast.

1st November. Elected A.R.A.

Heath's Annual for 1833, The Rhine, Belgium and Holland, published.

26th December. Diorama of Niagara in Harlequin Traveller at Drury Lane.


5th February. First full production in English of Mozart's Don Juan at Drury Lane.

May. First picture for Lord Lansdowne at Royal Academy, Venice from the Dogana.

25th May. At Edmund Kean's funeral.

July. Sketching in East Anglia for Life and Poems of Crabbe.

26th December. Egyptian diorama in St. George and the Dragon at Drury Lane.


8th February. Bunn's Minister and the Mercer at Drury Lane.

10th April. Byron's Sardanapalus at Drury Lane.

August. Sketching for Murray's Life of Johnson, published 1835.

26th December. Pocock's King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table at Drury Lane. Stanfield resigns from the theatre after a row with Ducrow and Bunn.


January. At Bowood, Oxford, Lichfield.

10th February. Elected Royal Academician in place of P. Reinagle.

5th November. Son Francis born (d. 1914). Marryat's The Pirate and the Three Cutters (for 1836).


On Royal Academy Council and hanging committee (for 1836).


May. Battle of Trafalgar at Royal Academy. Prior commitments prevent him painting a scene in Talfourd's Inn, for Macready.

June. His Coast Scenery published.


February. Designs an architectural act-drop for Her Majesty's Theatre (for 3rd March).

March. Refuses to illustrate Dickens' Pictures from Italy because of its anti-Catholic tone.

Summer?; Lodging at Hampstead for his health.

July. With Pugin, Etty and Mulready at Ramsgate.

3rd October. Baptised a Catholic, Hampstead. Three illustrations for Dickens' The Battle of Life.


Autumn. Moves to The Green-Hill, Hampstead.

2nd September. Daughter Mary marries J. H. Wheelwright.

Three illustrations for Dicken's The Haunted Man.

Some views in Lawson's Scotland Delineated (begins).

November. Presents Port of'Ancona to Garrick Club.


Summer. Tour in South Wales.


On Royal Academy Council and hanging committee.

25th February. At last meeting of Sketching Society.

27th May. Scenery for Not So Bad As We Seem, for Dickens' Amateurs.

September?-November. Tour in Southern France, Northern Spain and Pyrenees with wife and daughters.

30th December. At Turner's funeral.


24th January. Son Clarkson dies of consumption.

May. Victory towed into Gibraltar at Royal Academy.

23rd May. Gives evidence to Commons Committee on the National Gallery.


16th May. In Paris at deathbed of his daughter Mary Wheelwright.

17th August. Son George marries his cousin Maria Blackburn, Leeds.


Awarded First Class Gold Medal for his works at Paris Exposition Universelle.

15th June. Scenery for The Lighthouse for Dickens' Amateurs.


May. The Abandoned at the Royal Academy.

July-August. At Weymouth and Isle of Wight for health.

September-25th October. On tour in Ireland.

December. Presents Dutch Blazer ... to Garrick Club.


6th January. Scenery for The Frozen Deep for Dickens' Amateurs.

February. Turner watercolours exhibited at Marlborough House, selected by Stanfield, Roberts and H. A. J. Munro.

Five works shown at Manchester Art Treasures Exhibition; Stanfield visits exhibition with Gambart the dealer in October.

Dickens' Little Dorrit dedicated to Stanfield.


September. With Roberts on tour to Scotland to receive his diploma as Hon. R. S. A. [honorary member of the Royal Scottish Academy]

R.A. (elected 1830).

n December. Act-drop for New Adelphi Theatre for Ben Webster (last stage design).


On Royal Academy Council hanging committee (for 1860). With Roberts contributes a charity house to the 'Dramatic College' at Maybury.


7th January. Daughter, Harriet marries W. H. G. Bagshawe, Q.C.


Created Chevalier of Belgian Order of Leopold.

June. Stays with Dickens at Gad's Hill (with Roberts and Webster).


December-February. Ill; spends some time in Brighton.


April. In Isle of Wight.

September. At Ramsgate.


September. 'On the coast'.


Moves to 6, Belsize Park Road, Hampstead.

Summer. At Ramsgate.


Autumn. At Ramsgate. Ballantine's Life of Roberts dedicated to him.


May. Last work at Royal Academy, Skirmish Off Heligoland.

11th May. Taken ill with stomach haemorrhage; dies on Saturday 18th; funeral on 27th at St. Mary's R.C. Chapel, Hampstead; buried at Kensal Green R.C. Cemetery.


First Royal Academy Winter Exhibition of Old Masters and Deceased British Painters, largely devoted to his and C. R. Leslie's work.


van der Merwe, Pieter. Clarkson Stanfield, 1793-1867. Exhibition catalogue. Tyne and Wear County Council Museums, 1979.

Created 17 February 2015