Pollard, Gloucester Coffee House, Piccadilly, 1828 As I said at the beginning, this image is fraught with meaning. I wonder if, when he was sketching this scene, Scharf knew he was recording the great coaching era at its peak. Mail coaches leaving London George Scharf: Chronicler of 19th Century London
Today, Oxford Street is a thoroughfare in the West End of London, but its origins go far back to the Roman roads. Between the 12th century and the year of my story, To Tame the Wind, 1782, it was variously known as Tyburn Road, Uxbridge Road, Worcester Road and Oxford Road. It became notorious as the route taken by prisoners on their final journey from Newgate Prison to the gallows at Tyburn near Marble Arch. Beginning about 1729, however, it became known as Oxford Street.