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Victorian photographers in Ipswich: SAWYER, SMITH and WHITE

Replies: 6

Re: Victorian photographers in Ipswich: numbered prints by Walter A. SMITH

Posted: 1494591810000
Classification: Query
Beverley BOWRY of Ipswich has kindly shared three cartes de visite by W. A. SMITH:

19686B and 20357A (sitters unknown)
These portraits were probably made in 1868 or 1869. The 670 register numbers between them tell us that the young couple had been photographed before the single man visited the studio, but his mount is the one that refers to Walter SMITH's predecessor, John SAWYER.

Assuming that only the earliest mounts mentioned SAWYER, we may be looking at a reprint of 19686B, stuck on a new card some time after the sitting. Another possibility is that old stock was not entirely exhausted before the new design came into use. What is clear is that we cannot rely solely on the style of a trade plate to determine the date of a photograph.

Mrs MASON & her son Philip
The unnumbered cdv features Sarah MASON of Chelmondiston (Beverley's widowed great-grandmother, later Mrs WILSON, née ALLEN) with her son Philip MASON, who was born in November 1859. His apparent age (about 11?) points to 1870 or 1871, when he was boarding at Prospect House School in Claydon or perhaps soon to go there.

An eBay merchant is currently advertising a red-bordered cameo portrait numbered 29384A on an otherwise similar mount, very much like the "7006" cdv posted here on 5 March 2013. Both seem to date from the early or mid-1870s.
SubjectAuthorDate Posted
David Gobbitt 1362406010000 
David Gobbitt 1362408075000 
David Gobbitt 1362499211000 
David Gobbitt 1382126204000 
David Gobbitt 1494591810000 
David Gobbitt 1362586801000 
David Gobbitt 1451500286000 
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