© National Portrait Gallery, London
Gertie Millar; Lionel Monckton
published by Rotary Photographic Co Ltd Click on the links below to find out more
bromide postcard print, circa 1909
3 3/8 in. x 5 3/8 in. (85 mm x 137 mm) overall
Bequeathed by Patrick O'Connor, 2010
The American retailer Harry Gordon Selfridge opens the first British custom-built department store on what was then the 'dead end' of Oxford Street. The revolutionary complex, considered the world's largest at the time, transforms shopping, offering diverse amenities including a post office and a library, and modernises the visual face of retailing through innovative window displays.
Art and science
The Frenchman Louis Bleriot becomes the first person to cross the English channel by aeroplane, winning the £1,000 prize offered by the Daily Mail
, and greeted by cheering crowds at Dover station. Bleriot's flight also showed that England was, as H.G. Wells put it, from a military point of view 'no longer an inaccessible island'. In dance, Alexandre Benois becomes the first artistic director of Sergey Diaghilev's innovative Ballets Russes.
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), is founded in America to campaign for the rights of African Americans. One of the oldest and most influential civil rights movements, it was founded by a diverse group of individuals from mixed backgrounds, including W.E.B. Du Bois, Ida Wells-Barnett, Henry Moscowitz and William English Walling. The Selig Polyscope company sets up the first film studio in Los Angeles.