Eleanor Peacock (1860s)

Hampstead (1868)

The painting shows a view from West Heath, looking towards Harrow on the Hill. The visible posts and washing line are significant, and act as a reminder of the industrious laundry-women who had been a feature of Hampstead for centuries. Hampstead's water was purported to be so clean that during the reign of Henry VIII, nobles would send their washing up from the city to be washed and dried on the Heath. Most likely due to the building of wash houses, the practice had waned by the early 20th century.