James Bayliss Allen

Born 1803
Died 1876
Place of Birth Birmingham
Place of Death London
Gender Male
Biographical Notes James Baylis Allen (1803-1876), painter and engraver specialising in landscape. Apprenticed first to his brother Josiah in Birmingham, from 1821 he attended classes by Joseph Vincent Barber and Samuel Lines. Having moved to London in 1824 he worked as an engraver for the Bank of England. His career is rather similar to that of another engraver from Birmingham, Edward Paxman Brandard (q.v.), in that he did engravings of works by J.M.W. Turner and W.H. Bartlett among others, contributed to several of the same works as Brandard, including J. S. Coyne's Scenery and Antiquities of Ireland (1840) and E. C. Booth's Australia (1873-76), and was professionally connected with S.C. Hall, and with the Art Journal, for which his youngest son, Walter J. Allen, worked. He was a friend of two other Birmingham engravers, Joseph Goodyear and John Pye.
In 1837 James B. Allen was one of the signatories of an unsuccessful petition to William IV, requesting that the Royal Academy grant engravers a status equal to other artists’. He was a member of the Artists’ Annuity Fund in 1843.
Married to Mary Jennings (1845), died in London in 1876.

Sources
Basil Hunnisett, An illustrated dictionary of British steel engravers, new edn (1989), pp. 10–11. Basil Hunisett, ‘Allen, James Baylis’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, online ed. (2004), at http://www.oxforddnb.com/, doi: http://www.oxforddnb.com/. John Pye, Patronage of British Art: An Historical Sketch (London: Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, 1845)

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