Prince Vallar - Tattoo Artist
Hi Everyone...I've attached a couple of old photos of work done by Bert Vallar. Bert was one of the sons of Prince Vallar, who tattooed in Scotland for around 50 years.
Prince Vallar was a society tattooist who was introduced to tattooing through his father, Stephen Vallar, a stage magician who performed all over Ireland, England and Scotland and who shared the bill with Houdini and Wild Bill Hickock. Stephen had realised the popularity of tattooing in the Circus sideshows and urged his son Prince to pursue a career in this exciting new field. Prince modelled himself on the great tattooers of the day including George Burchett, Sutherland MacDonald and Prof Tom Riley.
Tom Riley was a great tattooist, showman, businessman and shameless self-promoter. In 1897 He had booked a 'stance' at Glasgow Zoo which was located in New City Road and was home to various sideshows and exotic displays and he offered '9 different colours and painless electric tattooing for a short period only'
Stephen Vallar, who was always on the lookout for a new attraction' had decided that this was a trade that his Son could excel in and purchased the necessary equipment to allow him to practice the art.
For the next 50 years Prince executed thousand's of tattoos on Sailors, seamen and soldiers from all over the world. Glasgow was the 'second city of the Empire' and was one of the busiest seaports in the western world. His tattoos were proudly displayed in every seaport in the seven seas and his fine line single needle work was instantly recognised by most tattooists on sight.
Prince opened a shop in Glasgow's Argyle Street and taught both his sons Stephen and Bert to tattoo. Stephen did not take to the art as well as Bert and after Prince died in 1947 Bert bought Stephen out and continued to tattoo in the shop until 1964. The tasttooing in these pictures was done by Bert vallar.
For further info and reading on all Scottish tattooing history please visit Prince Vallar - Tattoo Artist Navigate to the gallery and look at the tattoo named @erin Go Bragh'. This was done by Prince.
I hope that some of you find this little insight interesting. I've been following this thread and love the 'old time' stories and pics. Just thought I'd share some of mine with you.