Built in the style of an Elizabethan-era manor house, the original building…
‘The Mountains from Pallekelly’ by Alexander Henry Hallam Murray c.1890. The picture shows the Upper Storey of ‘Vada Sitina Maligawa’ or the Dwelling Palace at the Temple of the tooth with a Buddhist monk & a group of laymen venerating the tooth relic. Murray travelled extensively in Europe and the world which included Ceylon. He kept a detailed diary on his journey from England to Ceylon, India, Australia and New Zealand.
Alexander Henry Hallam Murray, known as ‘Hallam’, was the younger brother of John Murray IV (popular British publisher, fourth of seven by that name to head the publishing firm John Murray). Like most young men of his social class, he received a good education. He then attended Slade School of Fine Art. He subsequently became a distinguished artist who regularly exhibited at the Royal Academy.
Hallam joined the firm in 1876 and became a partner in 1884. His artistic and graphic design skills were put to good use producing outstanding illustrations – for example, in H W Nevinson’s ‘Sketches on the Old Road through France to Florence’ (1904). He also designed book covers for Murray titles, including the works of archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann.
Hallam travelled extensively in Europe and the world, and he took on responsibility for the ‘Handbooks for Travellers’. He also wrote ‘The High Road of Empire ‘ (1905).