What an amazing contraption!
At least one member of the Martin family at Ross House, Co. Galway posing in a wonderful motor car, that was housed in the stables when not in use.
It has been suggested that the lady may be the novelist Violet Martin (of Somerville & Ross, and The Irish R.M. fame), but Violet was born in 1862 so would have been relatively young when this photo was taken. What do you think? Maybe it's just the veil that seems to be ageing her... Personally, I think the woman in this photo probably taken on the same day is far more likely to be Violet Martin.
pamela_weaver suggests below that "...given the clothing and the rather elderly appearance - I'd suggest it's Martin's mother, Anna Selina Fox (1827-1906). Wrote my PhD thesis on them a long time ago, it's nice to see them again."
Bob Montgomery 2012 has identified the gentleman for us as Colonel C.P. Dawson. This is an entry from the 1907 Motorist's Year Book:
"DAWSON, Colonel C. P., Ross, County Galway. Cars: Leon Bollée, Clément, Panhard, Wolseley. Hobby: Mechanics. Introduced the first car into Connemara in 1897. Clubs: Naval and Military, Automobile Club of Great Britain and Ireland."
Received great information about the "contraption" - either a Turrell-Bollée Voiturette or a Coventry Motette! See below for some painstaking and forensic argument! Special thanks to Gerry Ward, els dekempe and Bob Montgomery 2012.
Date: Circa 1899
NLI Ref.: ALB186