On the eve of WWI the well-known explorer and writer Sir Clements Markham decided to pay tribute to his father, the Reverend David Markham, by putting pen to paper. In tracing his father's life story he provided a detailed account of his life and work at Stillingfleet, Great Horkesley, and Windsor, and his interactions with an extensive list of friends and family. As a well-connected, highly-educated and wealthy individual, David Markham was able to indulge his passion for travelling, collecting, and painting. The family home was filled with cabinets of coins, fossils, shells and other curiosities, as well as many fine works of art. His keen interest in heraldry and family history meant a great deal of time being devoted to tracing the rich history of the family.
Clements Markham's story of his father's life provides the reader with a rich depiction of a true Victorian antiquarian: someone with a lifelong passion for learning and interest in a broad spectrum of fields. In doing so he has provided the reader with a rich source of Victorian local, family and social history.