Hill’s of Lower Dominick Street

This photograph, dated 1905, was part of an advertisement for Hill & Co Cycle Makers and for Hill’s Dublin Studio, a photographic gallery. Both of these were located in this building in Lower Dominick Street. You have to hand it to Edmund Hill, he was a dab hand at publicity, and advertised extensively.

His photographic studio was patronised by their Royal Highnesses the Duke of Connaught and the late Duke of Edinburgh (Saxe Coburg and Gotha ), Lords Killanin, Wallscourt, Coleridge, etc, and “our patrons range from the Royal Family to the peasant”. He sold photographs from stamp size (a shilling a dozen ) to life size. He was “an authority on children, his photographs of them were awarded first place against all competitors”. “To be in the fashion was to pay his studio a visit.”

He had a very large bicycle showroom: “You have four grades to select from, and value for value. They are the correct thing and want a lot of beating.”

“If you possess an old machine, we can make it like new again. We teach you to ride one on the premises. Special terms to apprentices.”

He claimed to have introduced the motor bicycle, tricycle, and car to Galway. The Galtee More would cost you £12 or 21s 8d a month; The Pride of Connaught £10 or 18s 4d a month; The Star of the West £8 or 15s a month. They built these motorbikes which could travel five to 40 miles an hour. “Made in Galway. Guaranteed in Galway. Hundreds sold. Ask their owners.”

You may talk of the latest invention

And the wonders we are to see soon,

As a French man is making a field-glass

That will show us the ‘Man in the Moon’.

Then again, an old female Parisian

Who imagined we fell from the stars

Has devoted her hundreds of thousands

To the man who will travel to Mars.

Here at home, if you’re anxious to travel

You’ll find all the requirements supplied,

If you try one of Hill’s famous cycles---

It’s a fact that cannot be denied---

You are safe from all danger and harm,

Though you travel the wide world o’er,

While astride of the famed Pride of Connaught

Or that wind-splitting bike Galtee More.

You may search through the whole British Islands

And the Continent too if you like,

You will find out that Hill’s famous ‘Galtee’

Excels ev’ry foreign made bike;

The cost of a famed Pride of Connaught

Will surprise you the moment you hear,

That although it’s Hill’s latest invention,

‘Tis quite cheap, yet a “sweet little dear”.


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