„Views of Madeira“

Published by John Payne and son.

According to the person that I got this booklet from, this publication dates from about 1880. The booklet contains 18 excellent black and white photographs, measuring 16 by 22 cm or 6.5 by 8.5 inches.


1. Pier – entrance to town

This picture shows a view of the central city of Funchal, up the Avenida Zarco from the Cais. To the left you can see the Palacio de Lourenco.

2. Funchal – looking east

This is a view of central Funchal, probably from above the Rua da Ribeira de Sao Joao. Left from the center of the picture you can spot the Se cathedral. Note how the harbor did not have the main quayside back then. Before the main quay was built two small armored rock islands guarded the harbor.

3. Funchal

This picture shows the shoreline of Funchal, looking east. On the left side you can see the Palacio de Laurenco, above it the Se cathedral.

4. Funchal bay

View of the old harbor. Today there is a huge quay, incorporating the two small rock islands that were armored to guard the harbor against pirates. The picture must have been taken from about the location where today you will find the Reid’s Hotel.

5. Funchal from the mount

View from Monte down to Funchal, out of the cable car of the Companhia do Caminho-de-Ferro do Monte. It exploded at the 10th of September 1919, killing some people. Even after this event, the “Comboio” went on until the 17th of May 1943. Shortly after the last trip it was taken down.

6. Cathedral

This picture shows the famous Se cathedral. The name comes from sedes, meaning seat (of a bishop). This cathedral was built by Gil Eanes between 1493 and 1514. The high profits of the sugar trade enabled the Funchal merchants to purchase some highlights for their cathedral like a Flemish altar painting or a artistic wooden ceiling. The Avenida Arriaga, being one of Funchals main streets today, was just a dirt road back then. The jacaranda trees can still be found at the Avenida Arriaga.

7. Dona Maria Theatre

There is nothing known to me about this building.

8. Public gardens

Whether these are the same as the Blandy’s gardens I could not find out.

9. Belmonte Hotel gardens

The Grand Hotel Belmonte was situated in Monte and was one of the two famous Monte hotels, the other being the Hotel Monte Palace. Today the gardens of the old Monte Palace Hotel are by far more famous, since José Berardo (also called Joe Gold because he made a fortune with gold digging in southern Africa) turned them into a huge park. In front of the old entrance to the Grande Hotel Belmonte today you will find the starting point of the toboggans down to Funchal.

10. Bullock car

One of the main transporting means back then. The “car” was a sleigh of course. This looks like a lot of work for the yoke of oxen, but the pebble roads were in fact quite smooth and offered little friction to the sleigh’s runners.

11. Hammock

This was the other way of transport for tourists back then. I wonder if they got seasick after a while.

12. Funicular railway

This railway went up to Monte at first. In 1912 it was extended up to Terreiro da Luta. Also take a look at picture 5 (Funchal from the mount). Besides the railway you can see a sledge coming down the hill, still a fun thing to do today.

13. Mountain sledge

These sledges still exist today. Riding down from Monte is rather expensive (10 Euros in 2003 per person) but very exiting!

14. Road and river

This picture is taken from above the Riba de Santa Luzia into the direction of Funchal bay. On the left side you can see the building that today houses the Instituto do Vinho da Madeira, the second high building from the left. The house was built by Henry Veitch, being British Consul from 1809 to 1828 and 1831 to 1835. The building was later known as “Chateau Cossart”.

15. Country cottage

Seeing this picture, it is easy to imagine how poor Madeira really was back then.

16. Village of Came de lobos

Cama de lobos is the common short form of Camara de lobos, meaning cave of the wolves (the seals). This village was the favorite painting spot of Sir Winston Churchill and remains a favorite tourist spot today.

17. Grand curral

I have been unable to find out whether this has something to do with Curral das Freiras, but from the scenery I would think yes.

18. Rabacal

Rabacal remains one of the favorite hiking spots today, leading to the 25 fontes.