This set of 32 views of Calke Abbey and the surrounding countryside has been painted on paper and mounted onto card. Each of the individual painted squares is 2¼ x 2¼ inches (5.7 cm x 5.7 cm). The "black squares" are black ink sketches by G.R. Vawser (1794-1882), and it may have been intended to be made into a chess table.
Calke Abbey was the home of the Harpur Crewe baronets and is now a visitor attraction, owned and managed by the National Trust. The house is an early eighteenth century baroque mansion, built on the site of an Augustinian Priory which was dissolved by Henry VIII. By the 1980s, when the last Harpur Crewe at Calke died, the house had fallen into a decline. Since the National Trust have taken on the property, they have maintained it in its state of genteel decay.