Dalrymple recently discovered the impressive history of Whitby, North Yorkshire, and details its successful painters (such as watercolorist George Weatherill, “the Turner of the North”), its photographers (Francis Meadow Sutcliffe), its explorers and sailors (Captain Cook), and its depiction in Bram Stoker’s Dracula. From the New Criterion:
There is a continuity to life in Whitby, despite all the changes in the intervening years, perhaps because it is still relatively isolated, facing the North Sea with the almost equally inhospitable North Yorkshire Moors to its rear. It is not on the way to anywhere else and the people retain a more dignified character, combined with a down-to-earth friendliness, than in most of the country. Sutcliffe complained that fate had confined him to so small a compass. But in fact it was the making of him, for he immortalized not only the town but himself (in his later years, incidentally, he was curator of the museum); and there are advantages, artistic and other, in rootedness to locality as well as disadvantages. No phrase about the human condition is shallower than that of having it all.