Margaret Rebecca Dickinson (1821-1918) was a talented and prolific botanical artist who received little recognition during her lifetime. 2021 was the bicentenary of her birth, a fitting time to commemorate her impressive visual legacy. Norham resident Dr Elizabeth Towner has marked the occasion with a book on her fellow villager, illustrated with a selection of striking plant paintings.
Nature lover Margaret Rebecca Dickinson dedicated much of her long life of 97 years to her passion for plants. Across more than 50 years, she produced 458 watercolour paintings of the specimens, mainly wildflowers but also some cultivated flowers, that she observed around her various homes in Newcastle, the Borders, and Norham in Northumberland and further afield in the North East and beyond. She also assembled a herbarium – a collection of over 1,000 dried plants – and painted an album of 30 studies of daffodil cultivars, many of which she grew in her Norham garden. The album is of such fine quality that it is part of the Royal Horticultural Society collections.
This book brings together her Wildflower Collection from the Natural History Society of Northumbria (Hancock) and her Album of Narcissus from the Royal Horticultural Society's Lindley Collections, and her involvement in the Berwickshire Naturalists' Club. This is set within the context of her life and times.