Cassidy - Scupltor

This site celebrates the life and work of sculptor John Cassidy (1860 - 1939).

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12 November 2017:  New feature on the Rowland Thirlmere medallion

1 April 2017:
New feature on the  Edward Schunck memorial, University of Manchester

16 June 1916:
New feature on 'The Gate of Knowledge'

5 November 2015:
New feature inspired by the bronze bust of Alderman Sir James Wilson Southern.

9 May 2015:
'Adrift' has been re-installed in St Peters Square, Manchester. Updated feature now online.

20 June 2014:
New feature on the portrait medallion of John Lewis Paton, High Master of Manchester Grammar School.

25 October 2013: The plaster version of the work 'The Weaver's Wife' is on display in the exhibition 'Spindleopolis:
When Cotton Was King' until 30 November 2013 at GalleryOldham, Greater Manchester.

9 August 2013: Irish Journey.
The story of our visit to John Cassidy's native village and our part in an exhibition of his work.

19 March 2013: The future of 'Adrift'
- the plans for St Peter's Square

12 December 2012: Cassidy in print
! Our essay about John Cassidy and his Manchester patrons has now been published in the Bulletin of the John Rylands University Library of Manchester, as part of a theme issue on Manchester Architecture. We believe this is the first-ever detailed publication about his life and works.

Visits in 2009: 5769

Visits in 2010: 10271
Visits in 2011: 7831
Visits in 2012: 8711
Visits in 2013: 32537
Visits in 2014: 8905
Visits in 2015: 9172
Visits in 2016: 6502

John Cassidy, by Reginald Barber (1900). Courtesy of Manchester Art Gallery

This site developed from Charlie's interest in the John Rylands Library, Manchester, and its statues. He created a small online exhibition there about John Cassidy, which led to contacts with Cassidy admirers in Scotland and Ireland, and in turn to the creation of this larger tribute. We are not professional historians; if you find inaccuracies here, please let us know.

'Of all the sculptors mentioned [in this book], John Cassidy is the most intriguing. A biography would focus directly on the little-researched world of the provincial sculptor. Given the range of his output - from statues and busts to war memorials and architectural sculpture - it would appear that versatility was one of the attributes needed by sculptors outside London if they were to survive.' - Derek Brumhead and Terry Wyke. A walk round Manchester sculptures. Walkround Books, 1990.

As you browse the features, you will find that we follow trains of thought and journeys inspired by Cassidy's work and the people he portrayed, as well as offering what biographical information we can discover, and illustrating and describing as many of his works as we can locate. We hope you find something of interest.

Special thanks to everyone who has helped with research and shown interest, especially Doug Cassidy, John Canner, John Doyle, Frances Lee Gargan, Sheila Crehan, Sheila Dewsbury, and all the archivists at the John Rylands Library.

(Then again, if you are looking for his modern namesake John Cassidy, magician and balloon sculptor, you want For John Cassidy the ever-popular after-dinner entertainer see

- Charlie Hulme and Lis Nicolson, June 2009.