Object of the Week – The Albert Pile Collection
After retiring from the Civil Service and living for some time in Brighouse, Albert T Pile (1882-1981) and his wife moved to Whitby, eventually buying a house in Stakesby Road. Although classed as an ‘amateur’ artist (in that he sold few of his pictures), he meticulously recorded the minutiae of his life, and that of the people and town of Whitby, in pictures and words. Aside from the lively more personal work, the museum collection includes hundreds of beautiful drawings and sketches detailing the vast changes to the character of Whitby during the 1950s and 60s, through alterations to the streets and demolition of old houses and shops. He created a unique time capsule of Whitby and a wonderful eye witness source for future generations of the history of the area.
The majority of the museum’s Albert Pile collection was donated by the late Marchioness of Normanby. Her gift is priceless in terms of the history of Whitby and its people. Here are a couple of examples of his work which was mainly drawn in pencil and sepia pen with the occasional wash of colour to rooftops or individual items.