10 Dec

William D’Arc

Allanna Brough, Archive, People of the Picture House

Biography File: People of Campbeltown Picture House
Full NameWilliam John D’Arc
Maiden name / other names
Birth dateFebruary 26 1873Birth place: Dublin
Death dateNovember 18 1947Death place: Cardiff
Father’s full nameLambert D’Arc born Paris, France abt 1835
Mother’s full name
(maiden name in brackets)
Anne Jane North born Bath, Somerset
Spouse(s)Edith Fox married  April 29 1916, St John, Cardiff
Children
Places of residence
  • 1876: South Beach, Blackpool
  • 1881 Census: Victoria Lodge, Brookfield Rd, Hackney, London
  • 1883: 200 Cassland Rd, Hackney, London
  • 1884: 90 St Mary St, Cardiff
  • 1890: Travelling in South Africa: Kimberley, Durban, Jo’Burg, Pretoria
  • 1891: Touring in India
  • 1892 – 1893: Touring Australia; Sydney, Melbourne, Queensland, Brisbane
  • 1893: Singapore
  • 1893: Hong Kong
  • 1894: Japan
  • 1894: Russia; Vladivostok
  • 1895: Touring Hong Kong, Calcutta, Bombay, South Africa
  • 1905: Touring U.K
  • 1908: New York
  • 1911 Census: 127 Westbrook St, Bolton, Lancs
  • 1912- 1913 : Australia
  • 1922: 375 Newport Rd, Cardiff
  • 1922 – 1923 South Africa
  • 1926: 158 Cathedral Rd, Cardiff
  • 1928: 158 Cathedral Rd, Cardiff
  • 1928: Touring Mediterranean Ports
  • 1928: Indonesia
  • 1929: 158 Cathedral Rd, Cardiff
  • 1930: 158 Cathedral Rd, Cardiff
  • 1931: 158 Cathedral Rd, Cardiff
  • 1932: 158 Cathedral Rd, Cardiff
Occupation history
  • Waxwork figure /marionette maker/ papier mache head maker/scenery designer/show producer
  • 1911: Music Hall Actor
  • 1922: Exhibition Proprietor of D’Arc’s Waxworks
  • 1923: Music Hall Artiste
  • 1928: Music Hall Artist
Relationship with Picturehouse / Rex Cinema
  • Bought 50 shares in the Picturehouse.
  • He was the Brother in Law of Frederick Rendell Burnette.
Life story in a paragraph (summary of above)As the youngest son of Lambert D’Arc, William was part of the world – renowned performing D’Arc dynasty. From a young age, he travelled the world with his Father and siblings, learning and mastering his craft. Not only did he make the waxwork marionettes and scenery but, after his Father’s sudden death in Australia in 1893, William helped to produce the most extravagant shows, continuing to work with his sisters. William’s mother had been left running the waxworks in Cardiff for much of the time while the rest of the family were touring. After a court libel case against his mother in 1922, William settled in Cardiff and became the Proprietor of D’Arc’s Waxworks Exhibition. He produced his own show called “D’Arc’s Marvelettes” and continued with performances until 1938.
Contact with family established (details)?
External source references (e.g. census, BMD, valuation rolls, probate index, wills, parish records etc.) include ref. numbers
  • South Wales Echo Newspaper article Nov 7 2014
  • The Victorian Marionette Theatre by John & Clodagh McCormick
  • Ireland Select Births and Baptisms
  • 1876 BelleVue Prison Records, Manchester
  • England Civil Registration Index
  • U.K Incoming/ outward Passenger Lists
  • British Phone Books 1880 – 1984
  • Uk Census Collection
  • “D’Arc’s Marionettes Leave Their Mark In Tientsin” by Desmond Power
CPH archive or object collection reference
Other notes
ResearcherABCreation Date: May 2017
Thomas Blue December 10, 2017 William Greenless December 10, 2017