The bankers Francis (d. 1763) and Robert Child (d. 1782) established a remarkable menagerie of rare birds at Osterley Park, Middlesex in the mid-18th Century. Lady Beauchamp-Proctor on her visit in 1772, considered it, 'The prettiest place I ever saw, 'tis an absolute retreat, & fill'd with all sorts of curious and scarce Birds and Fowles, among the rest 2 numidian Cranes that follow like Dogs, and a pair of Chinese teal that have only been seen in England before upon the India [Chinese] paper' (J. Hardy and M. Tomlin, Osterley Park, London, 1985, p. 105). Robert's widow, Sarah Child, later employed William Hayes, artist and ornithologist to execute portraits of the birds, which were hung in the parlour at the Menagerie. In 1794, Hayes published two illustrated volumes on the rare species of birds in this famous aviary, entitled Portraits of Rare and Curious Birds with their Descriptions. Accurately drawn and beautifully coloured from species in the Menagery [sic.] of Child, the Banker at, Osterley Park, nr. London, 1794-1799. Other birds were published in Hayes' Portraits of British and Exotic Birds, London, 1771-1778. In his 'Advertisement', William Hayes states that, although he did not intend to publish these drawings, 'having so large a family, all under my roof, and dependant on my labours, and having only a precarious income, determinable on my decease he felt it necessary to make some provision for the future'. Of Hayes's 21 children, seven are credited with assisting in the production work, which was also intended to demonstrate their 'early genius' to the public. Each book was assembled as demanded, using extant and re-etched plates and new images, coloured and sometimes signed by different members of the family, resulting in 'a unique collection of plates and text' (C.E. Jackson, Bird Etchings, Ithica, 1985, p. 128).