December 26th, 2013

Carriages in Victorian England

Time: 1879 - 1880
Setting: Penzance, Cornwall; London

I'm writing a Victorian AU fanfiction - the story revolves around four characters, but the carriage owners are technically just two.

The first carriage owner is Mr. "Smith", the villain. Now a respected and wealthy gentleman, he made his fortune by unscrupolous means (the biggest one in a different country, so it was never found out) and marrying up. He usually lives in London.
He plans to further increase his fortune by having his only daughter marry his ward, Mr. "Jones". Mr. Jones is the son of Mr. Smith's deceased business partner and has been Smith's ward since his father's death. Smith has kept him housebound and tried to convince him he's too fragile for anything.
Miss Smith and Mr. Jones are currently living in Cornwall "for Mr. Jones' health".

I researched a little and Mr. Smith would probably have:
1) a town coach (in London)
2) a gig (in Cornwall)
3) another bigger carriage in Cornwall - perhaps a Landau or a Brougham.

Would it be too ridiculous to have a landau as "country carriage"?
I originally picked it because a) it's described as showy and it would fit the character, b) it doesn't look very warm and Smith and his lackeys would use it as an excuse to discourage Mr. Jones from accompanying Miss Smith on social calls ("it's just too cold in the carriage, you'll get sick")  - Smith wants to keep Jones as isolated as possible.

Would this make sense?

The second carriage owner, Mr. "Harris", is new to the neighbourhood and a bit mysterious: he has just come in from abroad, is very rich (though not as rich as rumored) and is reputedly not very strong - his health was damaged by years in foreign climates, or so people say.

His carriage is a Brougham.

Would this work?

Previous research:
- googled "victorian carriages"
- website "All about romance novels," page on carriages
- wiki page on barouches (another carriage I considered for Miss Smith)
- wiki page on landaus
- google image for Brougham carriages