National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

Sir William Russell Flint (1880-1969)

Sir William Russell Flint (1880-1969)

Artist

William Russell Flint began his career as an apprentice lithographer and designer. He moved to London in 1900 to work as a medical illustrator recording the effects of leprosy, eye disease, and South African War wounds. He met his wife, Sibyl Sueter, at art school. From 1903 to 1907 he worked for the 'Illustrated London News' and was commissioned to illustrate Rider Haggard's 'King Solomon's Mines'. This was followed by a year studying in Rome. During the First World War he designed and inspected airships and served in the Royal Air Force. After the war he and his family settled in London where he had a successful artistic career. He was elected president of the Royal Watercolour Society in 1936 and knighted in 1947. He died on 27 December 1969. The William Russell Flint page on the Art UK website provides images of his works held in public galleries. His Scottish landscapes are mostly in private hands.

Birth in 1880

William Russell Flint was born at 5:55 pm on 4 April 1880, the son of Francis Wighton Flint, Printer, master, and Jane Purves. The entry in the statutory register of births for the district of Newington in the City of Edinburgh gives the place of birth as 35 Lutton Place.

Birth entry for William Russell Flint

Birth entry for William Russell Flint (51 KB jpeg)
National Records of Scotland, 1880/685-5/495

1881 Census

In 1881, William R Flint, aged 11 months, was enumerated at 35 Lutton Place in Edinburgh. The census return for the district of Newington records his father's occupation as show card tenter and printer, employing two men and two boys. The household also included his mother and maternal grandmother, Elizabeth Russell or Purves, a widow who was born in Kinross.

1881 census return for William Russell Flint

1881 census return for William Russell Flint (48 KB jpeg)
National Records of Scotland, 1881/685-5/72, page 10

1891 Census

In 1891, William Russell Flint, 11, scholar, was enumerated at 5 Rosefield Place in Edinburgh. The census return for the district of Duddingston and Portobello in the county of Midlothian records his father's occupation as window ticket writer and illuminator. The household also included his mother, brother, Herbert Purves and sister, Charlotte Elizabeth.

1891 census return for William Russell Flint - 1

1891 census return for William Russell Flint - 2

1891 census return for William Russell Flint (19 and 18 KB jpegs)
National Records of Scotland, 1891/684-1/11, pages 4 and 5