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Old Photographs - Cambridgeshire Photographers - Ste-Sth

Photographers are listed alphabetically by surname on the following pages.

0 - 9 | Aa-Ak | Al-Ao | Ap-As | At-Az | Ba-Bak | Bal-Bam | Ban-Bd | Be-Bh | Bi-Bk | Bl-Bn | Bo-Bp | Br-Bt | Bu-Bz | Ca-Ck | Cl-Cn | Coa-Cor | Cos-Cz | Da-Dh | Di-Dq | Dr-Dz | Ea-Ec | Ed-Ez | Fa-Fh | Fi-Fz | Ga-Gd | Ge-Gq | Gr-Gz | Ha-Hd | He-Hh | Hi-Hn | Ho-Hz | I | Ja-Je | Jf-Jz | K | La-Ld | Le-Ln | Lo-Lz | Maa-Mad | Mae-Mar | Mas-Mb | Mc-Mi | Mj-Mz | Na-Nh | Ni-Nn | No-Nz | O | Pa-Pb | Pc-Ph | Pi-Po | Pr-Pz | Q | Ra-Rd | Re-Rh | Ri-Rz | Sa-Sb | Sc-Sf | Sg-Sk | Sla-Slz | Sma-Ss | Sta-Std | Ste-Sth | Sti-Sy | Ta-Te | Tf-Ti | Tj-Tz | U | V | Wa-We | Wf-Wh | Wi-Wz | XYZ


Name:  STEARN, Thomas, Snr, later Mr and Mrs Stearn (c.1867-1892), later Messrs Stearn or Stearn and Sons 
Thomas Stearn b: 1825 Bloomsbury Middlesex d:1905,  Wife - Eliza Louisa b:1829 Poplar d:1892. Their ten children were: Herbert T b:1855, Frank b:1856, Allen F b:1858, Florence Eliza b:1859, Harry Cotterell b: 1860, Warwick William b:1861, Walter James b:1865, Gilbert A b: 1866, Rupert b:1869, Ralph b: 1872.            

Address:
72 Bridge Street, Cambridge throughout and Brunswick Terrace, Cambridge 1916, 1922, 1929

Working Dates:
1865 - 1966.

Subjects, styles, advertising, other relevant information: In 1857 Mrs Stearn advertised her "Berlin and Fancy Repository" at 72 Bridge Street Cambridge (Cambridge Independent Press Saturday 10 October 1857). In the 1861 Census Thomas was at 72 Bridge Street, shown as a tailor, his wife a shop keeper. In December 1864 Thomas, then described as a fancy goods dealer, was adjudged a bankrupt. This obviously caused Thomas to re-think his future and in the Cambridge Chronicle on 26 August 1865 an advertisement appeared stating simply "Thos Stearn's Photographic Studio 72 Bridge Street, Cambridge". Two years later and his advertising had become a little more explicit. In the Cambridge Chronicle 13 July 1867 appeared "MRS. AND MRS. STEARN, Photographers, 72, Bridge Street Cambridge. Cartes de visite and the new cabinet portraits in various Styles, taken Daily. Private Dressing-room for Ladies. A large stock of albums, from Is. to Two Guineas. Views of Cambridge in great variety".

The two cartes de visite below showing Clare College, are examples of Stearn's Cambridge views, probably purchased by visitors as souvenirs, in the same way as postcards were later purchased. The reverse of these (see below) bear the text "Mr Stearn Photographer 72 Bridge Street Cambridge", with a monogram T.E.S. and are from the mid 1860s

Cambridge Views, Calre College by Mr Stearn, mid 1860s

Reverse of Cambridge Views by Mr Stearn

By 1871 the census showed the family at the same address with Thomas's occupation as a photographer, with son Frank a photographer's assistant. It may have proved tough in these early years to keep the business going in the face of competition from other local photographers. In the Cambridge Independent Press 9 Aug 1873 an advertisement appeared for the sale of household furniture and the contents of photographers studio including cameras and lenses and the stock in trade of a fancy stationer etc - to be auctioned by Wisbey and Son on 12 Aug 1873 on the premises at 72 Bridge Street. The business did continue however. In 1881 the Stearn family still occupied 72 Bridge Street. It would appear that the business was assisted at different times by the family taking in one or two student lodgers. The firm also employed other photographers. For example in the Cambridge Independent Press 18 Jan 1889 Messrs. Stearn, Photographers, 72, Bridge-street, advertised a vacancy for an outdoor apprentice; small premium required. In 1891 Edith Florence Mary Stearn, then a scholar, was living in Cambridge with Walter and Rupert Stearn who were both photographers at Fern Cottage Brunswick Place. In June 1898 the firm had a narrow escape when there was a fire on their premises, which staff were able to quickly bring under control. (Cambridge Daily News 11 June 1898). In 1901 Edith was a photographer's assistant in Cambridge living with her uncle Thomas and her cousins Harry and Walter at 72 Bridge Street Cambridge. Harry, Walter and Thomas were all three described as photographers. Edith was the daughter of Thomas's brother, Edward Constantine Stearn, a wealthy member of the London Stock Exchange.

When Thomas died in 1905 aged 81 the press report of his death stated "He had a great love for the business he had built up since the time when photography first came into prominence, and up to the last took quite a large share in the management of its affairs."(Cambridge Independent Press 8 Sept 1905). In 1906 Harry Cottrill Stearn died, aged 46 (Cambridge Independent Press 9 Feb 1906). By 1911 Walter James was the sole occupant at 72 Bridge Street, listed as a photographer and an employer.

At about this time another of Thomas's sons, Gilbert Archibald Stearn, then a keen rower and cricketer,who later became a Cambridge Councillor, took over the management of the business. WW1 took its toll on Gilbert and on the Stearn business. In October 1916 Gilbert Stearn applied for an exception for military call-up for his employee, Frederick William Addison, 36, of Herbert Street, Cambridge, married with two children, a photographic operator, printer and dark room developer. Gilbert, who stated that his brother's eyesight had deteriorated to the point where he could do no photographic work, had only one operator left out of five operators and four printers, and pleaded that losing that operator, Addison, would mean that he would have to close his business. His application was unsuccessful, Addison's call-up was deferred for a month and it was pointed out to Gilbert that he could recruit women for his work. (Cambridge Independent Press 6 Oct 1916).

In the Cambridge Daily News on Friday 24 August 1917 p1 an advertisement appeared "Stearn Junior, Photographer, will open an Art Studio at 9am on Saturday morning at 13 Bridge Street. All orders dealt with with the greatest possible expedition. No work refused. On parle Francais. Telephone 3 lines". (the premises at 13 Bridge Street had been used until 1912/13 by photographer William Butcher). A similar advertisement appeared in the same newspaper the following day. Pressure of work may well have affected Gilbert because on 27 August 1917 he published another very different advertisement in the Cambridge Daily News "To the Commanding Officers, Officers and Cadets stationed at CAMBRIDGE. The malicious rumours now circulating in Cambridge, (1) That I am insane, (2) That I am German are without the slightest foundation in fact, and I hereby give notice that I shall take legal proceedings without any further warning against any person or persons spreading either of these rumoun after this date. GILBERT A. STEARN. Photographer. August 27th, 1917". Gilbert was picked up by the Borough police a few nights later in a state of confusion and put before the magistrates and committed to an asylum. (Cambridge Independent Press 31 Aug 1917). The malicious rumours may have been fueled by Gilbert having spent some time in the Asylum at Fulbourn in 1894 and his wife Anna hailing from Germany, where his four daughters had all been born. Recovery was swift but it does not seem that Gilbert went back to running the family business as it had previously existed. He advertised "Gilbert Stearn begs to announce that although through unforeseen circumstances he has lost the opportunity of opening his studio for the present he is able to accept orders for groups at the Blue Boar Trinity Street or 1 North Terrace. They will be executed with usual care and finish". (Cambridge Daily News 30 Nov 1917). On 12 December 1917 a similar advertisement appeared "Gilbert Stearn photographer, 14 years manager for Stearn and Sons will be glad to receive orders for groups at Redin and Co Stationers 16 Trinity Street, or 1 North Terrace (Midsummer Common). They will be executed with usual care and finish. No charge unless satisfactory. On parle francais".

We don't know what, if any, relationship existed between Gilbert Stearn and the family business after this. In the Cambridge Independent Press on 6 Sept 1918 the firm advertised "A young lady assistant required to learn photography, apply personally between 10 and 1 o'clock Messrs Stearn 72 Bridge Street". We do know however that early in 1919 Walter Stearn took a new partner in the business, Frederick Ernest Leslie Furlong. Frederick Furlong was tho son of Mr. George Furlong, tho headmaster of Norton College Bedford and was 39 years of age. He was educated at the College, and was afterwards employed for many years by the London and North-Western Railway, living at Slough. Frederick was also the husband of Walter's cousin, photographer Edith Florence Mary Stearn. Edith had married Allan McMillan in Cambridge in 1909, then married Frederick Furlong in 1916. Sadly Frederick's partnership and his marriage did not last for long. He collapsed in the street in Cambridge in March 1919, dying before arriving at Addenbrookes Hospital.

It seems likely that from this point onwards control of the firm was in the hands of Walter and his cousin Edith. Gilbert Stern died in 1928. Walter died in 1929. By 1939 the occupants at 72 Bridge Street were Edith and her third husband, Harry B Benton, a master tailor. At around this point the family firm was sold or otherwise disposed of to a successful and expanding photographic firm from the North East of England, A.H.Leach and Co Ltd.

Leach, as they are now known, are a successful advertising company operating today at Dyson Wood Way, Bradley, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, HD2 1GN. The history of Leach is on their web site here. Arthur Holdsworth Leach was a successful and innovative photographer in Brighouse Yorkshire from 1891. Within three years he had started to concentrate on developing and printing work and so established what is believed to be the country's first specialised developing and printing works. He steadily grew the business which passed on to his son Eric when he retired in 1935. By 1941 the firm had a workforce of 330. The company expanded and became a successful player in the blossoming advertising industry, taking over a number of other smaller companies. In 1958 Eric's son John joined the firm. In the 1960s the firm had a number of major retailers as clients. In 1966 the Leach firm was sold to Hunting PLC, but Leach family members continued to be involved until 1999, when the family bought the company back.

It was during WW2 that it appears that Leach took over Stearns. This might have been preceeded by a short period during which Stearns used Leach's developing and printing services. The exact date of the take-over is not known, probably 1941-2, certainly before April 1943, On 6 April 1943 a new company was registered, Stearn and Sons (Cambridge) Ltd, company number 00379878. The company's official address was 72 Bridge Street Cambridge. The company secretary was Albert Morrell "Sarre View" Slead Avenue Brighouse, Yorks, an Incorporated Accountant. The objects of the company were very wide ranging, top of the list was "General photographers", The Directors of the company were Joyce Washington Leach, formerly Benson, Company Secretary, and Harold Oldfield Cocker, Photographic Specialist. The main shareholders of the original company were Joyce Washington Leach, St Giles' House, Lightcliffe, married woman, wife of Eric Alexander Leach and Harold Oldfield Cocker "Giadheim" 49 Harlow Moor Drive, Harrogate, Photographic specialist. By December 1968 the company had ceased trading as a separate entity but continued to act as an agent for its holding company A J Leach and Co. On 25 August 1972 Companies House were notified that Stearn and Sons (Cambridge) Ltd had changed their registered office from 72 Bridge Street Cambridge to Photo Works, Sunny Bank Road, Brighouse Yorks, HD62AD. Another notification in 1986 changed the company name to Leach Screenprinting Ltd. Companies House was finally notified in 1999 that the company was being dissolved.

When Edith Florence Mary Benton died in 1950, probate was granted to Cecil John Webb, photographer. (a local photographer who in 1939 was living at 1 Histon Road Cambridge, so may well have been involved in Stearn's business.)

Around 1970, Stearn's operation in Cambridge merged with Eden Lilley’s photographic business. By this point the local manager of the firm was Frank Kenworthy and Len Jowett was one of their photographers. The shop was in the capable hands of a Mrs Sharpe, who was described as being rather forceful with the customers. Frank Bird also worked for them briefly around 1963. Other photographers who worked for the firm at different times were Stan Robinson and Doug Rattle.

The firm produced portraits, souvenir views of Cambridge and postcards and undertook a lot of University and college work, including sporting events and groups. A number of illustrations below show the work of the firm over their long history.

A large number of Stearn's negatives dating from around 1942 to 1950 have survived and are in the Cambridgeshire Collection, Central Library Cambridge. These were stored at Brighouse after printing, but other negatives from Cambridge were all destroyed in the 1970s. Use this link to download a guide to Stearn's negatives in the Cambridgeshire Collection.

The first carte de visite (1) below is a vignette head and shoulders portrait of an unknown lady with lace collar, 1870s by Thomas Stearn. The reverse states "Landscape and Portrait Photographer Thos Stearn 72 Bridge Street Cambridge, negatives kept, copies may be had"
(2) Stereo card of Caius College New Court Cambridge - mounted on distinctive yellow cardstock, with the photographer's name and location in black manuscript on the reverse.
(3) Carte de visite, square cornered mount, view of 1st Court, St John's College Cambridge, 1870s, - reverse shows "Mr and Mrs Stearn Photographers, Cambridge" and monogram with initials "TES", Simon Shirley collection.
The next five scans below are of cartes de visite by Messrs Stearn.
(4) unknown male sitter holding cane and bowler, grey card mount with chamfered and gilt edging, “Messrs Stearn, CAMBRIDGE” in gilt lettering on the face, reverse is blank (1870s)
(5) vignette portrait of L.K.Harrison, negative number 8882, grey card mount, “Messrs Stearn Cambridge” impressed on face; reverse has a logo with interlocked M and S and text “Messrs Stearn Artists and Photographers 72 Bridge Street Cambridge” (1890s),
(6) vignette portrait of Maxwell H Smith, negative no 9592, mounted on grey card, on face impressed lettering “Messrs Stearn, Cambridge” is coloured in white, edges chamfered and coloured white. (1890s)
(7) vignette portrait of T.C.James, dated Jan 7 1902, negative No 30437, on face impressed lettering “Messrs Stearn CAMBRIDGE” coloured in white, reverse as for carte (3)
(7a) Portrait of unknown lady with brooch, black gloss mount, rounded corners, gilt lettering "Messrs Stearn Cambridge" on face, reverse blank. (Possibly 1890s).
(8) vignette portrait of unknown man mounted on grey card with red edging, impressed on face “Messrs Stearn Cambridge”, reverse has floral design with geometric borders, mount producer’s name on bottom “Reg C.E.& G” (c.1905)
(8a) is a carte de visite vignette of an unknown lady. The mount has the same "Messrs Stearn Cambridge" face, but the reverse is blank. (We are grateful to Brett Payne for permission to reproduce this image from his personal collection).
Stearns did far more than just cartes de visite. Illustrated below from the author's collection (9) is a framed albumin print of seven unknown academics, c.1900, The mount has "Stearn & Sons, Cambridge" printed thereon, 11 x 8.5in, in oak frame 18 x 20.5in.
(10) a view of the audience at Ditton Corner on the River Cam for May week, c.1905, embossed with the photographer's name, "Messrs Stearn" (Frank Bird Collection).
(11) a pair of portraits, 5.5 x 4 in, (author's collection) from the 1920s of children in theatrical or fancy dress, below is the detail of the firm's signature on the lower right of these prints.
(12) Unknown young man in three piece suit, image 2.5 x 3.5 inches on heavy brown card mount 7 x 5 ins, impressed on mount below image "Stearn & Sons Cambridge" possibly 1930s.
(13) The window of Stearn's studio in Bridge Street in the 1950s showing some of their College group photos (Cambridgeshire Collection)
(14) Enlargement of a section of a photo taken from Edward Leigh's Kings Parade studio showing two of Stearn's photographers at work at a University degree day (Frank Bird Collection).
(15) and (16) A community party at Chesterton celebrating VE or VJ day 1945, below which is the Stearn's backstamp from the reverse of the print (Frank Bird Collection)

References: Cambridge Chronicle 10/3/1866, 20/4/1867 advertised that they took cabinet photos and offered reduced prices for cash. Cambridge Chronicle 8/1/1870
Became Stearn, Thomas and Son 72 Bridge Street Kellys Directory of Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Suffolk, Kelly and Co London April 1888 - 1900.
Between 1901 and 1904 directory entries changed from "& Son" to "& Sons"
In Kellys Directory of Cambridgeshire 1904, Spaldings Directory of Cambridge 1913, 1915, 1919 1922 list as Stearn, Thomas and Sons and Stearn and Sons
In Deacon's Court Guide 1892 there is an advertisement "Messrs Stearn Portrait and Landscape Photographers Cambridge. Particular and personal attention given to groups in town or county. A large series of views of Cambridge"
Mike Petty, The Photographers, (a handlist of local photographers), Cambridge, Cambridgeshire Collection, 1992
Kellys Directory of Cambridgeshire 1869 -1962
Described as Stearn & Sons (Cambridge) Ltd in the 1960s
Mike Petty, An Eye on the Past, Cambridge Weekly News, 22/11/1990.
Cambridgeshire Collection’s Carte de Visite Collection c.65.5 has 2 cartes with different mounts for Thomas Stearn and 2 cabinet photographs for Messrs Stearn.
1962 Kelly's Directory of Cambridge has an advertisement "For Commercial Photography please contact Stearns 72 Bridge Street, Tel 50677. Special facilities available for large groups and conferences".
Frank Bird's autobiography includes references to the firm and its photographers in the 1960s.
Cambridgeshire Collection holds a large quantity of negatives from the firm from 1941 to 1950.
Cambridge Daily News 11 June 1898 – fire at premises
Cambridge Independent Press 8 Sept 1905 death of Thomas Stearn
Cambridge Daily News 8 Feb 1906 – death of Harry Cottrill Stearn
Cambridge Daily News 4 Feb 1929 - death of Walter James Stearn
Cambridge Daily News 9 Mar 1968 – merger of AH Leach and Hunting Surveys, effects on Stearn and Sons Cambridge
Cambridge Daily News  9 Oct 1970 - merger with Eaden Lilly photography department.
Leach - website - history of the firm https://weareleach.com/#ourHistory

carte de visite by Thos StearnReverse of Thomas Stearn carte
1) Carte de visite by Thomas Stearn

St John's College Cambridge by Mr and Mrs Stearn

Reverse of carte de visite, Mr and Mrs Stearn
(2) Carte de visite, square cornered mount, view of St John's College Cambridge - reverse shows "Mr and Mrs Stearn Photographers, Cambridge" and monogram with initials "TES"

Stereo Pair by Thomas Stearn
(3) Stereo pair by Thomas Stearn of Caius College New Court

Detail of reverse of stereo pair
Detail of reverse of stereo pair above

Cartes de visite, Stern
Stearn (4) and Stearn (5)

Reverse of 2 cartes de visite by Messrs Stearn
Reverse of Stearn (4) and Stearn (5)

Cartes de visite by Stearn
Stearn (6) and Stearn (7)

Reverse of two cartes de visite, Stearn
Reverse of Stearn (6) and Stearn (7)

Carte de visite, black mount by Messrs Stearn

(7a) Messrs Stearn carte de visite, black gloss mount, gilt lettering, reverse blank, no negative No.

Carte de visite, StearnReverse of carte de visite, Stearn
Stearn (8) and the reverse of Stearn (8)

Messrs Stearn carte de visite, rear of mount blank

Stearn 8a, Messrs Stearn carte de visite, rear of mount blank

Group of academics by Stearn & Sons
(9) Group of unknown academics, Stearn and Sons

Messrs Stearn view of the May Races

(10) The audience at Ditton Corner on the River Cam during the May races, circa 1900, below is a detail of the embossed Messrs Stearn mark from the lower rh corner of the print (Frank Bird Collection)

Detail of photographers mark embossed on the above print

(10a) Detail of embossed photographer's mark on the above print.

Two 1920s portraits of children in theatrical or fancy dress

(11) a pair of portraits from the 1920s of children in theatrical or fancy dress, see below for detail of the firm from the lower right corner of these prints.

Details or Stearn's signature on the above two prints

Photo of young man by Stearn & Sons

(12) Photograph of young man, dark brown mount, impressed mount mark "Stearn & Sons Cambridge"

 

Stearn's shop front

(13) Stearn's premises at 72 Bridge Street, Cambridge, 1940s, photo by permission of the Cambridgeshire Collection. Catalogue reference P.Stear.K4.24036

Stear's photographers at work at the Senate House

(14) This detail from a large print taken from Edward Leigh's Kings Parade Office of a degree day on the Senate House lawn in the 1960s shows two of Stearn's photographers, Frank Kenworthy and Len Jewitt, in white shirts with their backs to the camera, taking photographs of degree holders and their families. (Frank Bird Collection)

Celebrations for VE or VJ day, Cambridge by Stearn's

(15) Stearn's photograph of a community party in Cambridge celebrating VE or VJ Day (Frank Bird Collection)

Backstamp from the print above

(16) Backstamp, 1945, from reverse of the print above (Frank Bird Collection)

Name:  STEEL, A.L., PHOTOGRAPHY   b:       d:
Address: 33 Elter Walk, Gunthorpe, Peterborough
Working Dates: c.1990 - 1999
Subjects, styles, advertising, other relevant information: Weddings, commercial etc
References: Peterborough Yellow Pages 1990, 1999

Name:  STEELE, Enoch   b: 1824, Burslem, Staffs  d: 1877, Wisbech
Address: c.1862 The Crescent Wisbech, then 8 High Street Wisbech
Working Dates: 1861? - 1875

Subjects, styles, advertising, other relevant information: In 1861 Enoch Steel, photographic artist, b: c 1823 (birth place shown as "not known") and his wife Ann b: c 1826 Hanley Staffs were both lodgers at 1 Nene Parade Wisbech, the home of Henry Cole, horse keeper, and his family. By some time late in 1861 or early 1862 Enoch was operating as a photographer at The Crescent, Wisbech. A report in the Cambridge Independent Press - Saturday 24 May 1862 P7 would appear to mark an early point in his career at Wisbech: "Wisbech, We have, within the last few days, had a view of some very beautiful specimens of photography, Mr Steele of The Crescent, having taken some fine views of the ruins of the Middle Level Sluice and which have been eagerly sought by the admirers of first class photographic printing. Mr Steele's specimens of carte de visite are also of a very high order fully equal to any we have seen taken in London or elsewhere, and we are gratified to find that his pictures are highly appreciated and that he is receiving so large an amount of public support." The 1871 Census shows Enoch Steele and his wife Anne (b:1824 Shelton Staffordshire) and daughter, Francis Eleanor, at 8/9 High St, Wisbech. Frances Eleanor was born in Wisbech in 1862. Living with them was a visitor, Mary Anne Jones b:1799 Shelton Staffs (who was Enoch's mother in law). Enoch's occupation was shown as a photographer. (The 1871 census return has been wrongly transcribed as Enoch Stute). Enoch died in 1877. In 1881 his widow and daughter were living at 46 Agenoria Street Wisbech. Ann Steele had a private income. Also living at this address was Ann's mother and a boarder, John Kennerell, photographer, b 1844 Gosberton Lincolnshire. John Kennerell took over Enoch Steele's studio at 8 High Street Wisbech.

A number of examples of Steele's work are shown below. From the subjects depicted these appear to be mainly from the 1860s, An attempt has been made to put these into date sequence. One difference between the cartes is the spelling of the town of Wisbeach or Wisbech. The latter is the present day spelling, which was in use in Statutes from at least the 1830s, but for many years both alternatives were in use as a matter of personal preference. It was around the time that Enoch was working in Wisbech that attempts were being made to standardise the spelling. In his 'History of Wisbech during the last Fifty years, 1848 - 1898', published in 1898, Frederick John Gardner stated that Wisbech had become the standard spelling from around 30 years earlier (i.e. around 1868) However discussions on the spelling to be used by the local school board and the Great Eastern Railway Company can be found nine years later in the Stamford Mercury and Cambridge Chronicle and Journal - Saturday 10 February 1877 p6 and Friday 08 June 1877 p4 respectively. The spelling used by Enoch may well have wavered between the two versions and so this may not be as useful in sequencing the cartes as might have been thought.

The first of the cartes de visite below appears to be the oldest, perhaps from the late 1850s, early 1860s, judging by the clothing, hairstyle and lack of studio props. This is a carte de visite of a mother and daughter, on a square cornered white mount. There is no photographer's name on the face; the reverse states "From E Steele's Photographic Rooms, CAM. Copies can always be had." The old English script is difficult to interpret and the initial looks more like a "G" than an "E". The use of the word "CAM." for an address is very strange - hardly an advertisement likely to lead to more customers. The lack of an address and use of the phrase "Photographic Rooms" suggest this is an early example of this photographer's work.

Next is another, believed slightly later, carte with a cream mount with square corners. The reverse of the mount has a heraldic garter design with the wording "Photographed by E Steele, Crescent, Wisbech". The Crescent address doesn't appear in later directories.

Next is a portrait of a couple, the clothing and lady's hairstyle suggesting the 1870s. The cream mount has rounded corners. There is no text on the face and the rear, printed sideways, resembles a business card and has the text "Mr E Steele Photographer 8 High Street Wisbeach Cambs, copies to be had". Next is a carte de visite of a vignette portrait of an unknown man with a moustache. The photograph is mounted on a white mount with thin blue line round the face. The photograph has been badly mounted, partially covering the photographer's details which are printed at the bottom of the mount "E Steele photo. 8 High Street Wisbeach". The reverse of the carte is printed in blue "Mr E Steele Photographer 8 High Street Wisbeach Cambs. Copies to be had". The design is slightly more elaborate than the previous carte, particularly the scroll work around the address on the reverse. It is from the 1870s.

Next is a carte from the Wisbech and Fenland Museum of an unknown lady. The reverse has a garter design which looks to have evolved from the previous example with the Crescent address, with the addition of the cross keys (used in the Arms of Wisbech and referring to St Peter) and a scroll with the motto motto "libera terra liberque animus" which can be roughly translated as " A free land and a free mind". This again carries the address at 8 High Street Wisbech. It is not known whether the motto and crest refer to a particular family to which Enoch belonged or other association. The next carte de visite is very unusual, being a copy of a political cartoon by an unknown artist; the reverse being identical to the previous example. This appears to refer to some sort of local controversy about separating the sexes in a congregation.

Next is another example from the Wisbech and Fenland Museum collection, of an unknown lady. The reverse has the 8 High Street address in a garter. The heraldic devices above the garter have been replaced by a green printed engraving with a globe and cherubs.

References: We are most grateful to the Wisbech and Fenland Museum for permission to reproduce some of their cartes de visite on this page.
Mike Petty, The Photographers, (a handlist of local photographers), Cambridge, Cambridgeshire Collection, 1992
PO Directory of the Counties of Cambridge, Norfolk and Suffolk, Kelly and Co London Aug 1869 - Nov 1875

Carte de visite - SteeleLate 1850s, early 1860s ? Enoch Steele carte de visite - premises described as

Late 1850s, early 1860s ? Enoch Steele carte de visite - premises described as "E Steele's Photographic Rooms"

Early Steele carte de visiteEarly 1860s E.Steele carte de visite with The Crescent Wisbech as the studio address. The diamond pattern carpet also appears on cartes from 8 High Street

Early 1860s E.Steele carte de visite with The Crescent Wisbech as the studio address. The diamond pattern carpet also appears on cartes from 8 High Street.

E.Steele carte de visite, 1860s, reverse in a E.Steele carte de visite, 1860s, reverse in a

E.Steele carte de visite, 1860s, reverse in a "business card" style, using Wisbeach spelling rather than Wisbech

E.Steele carte de visite, cameo style portrait; reverse with business card design with ornate scrollwork, town name spelled E.Steele carte de visite, cameo style portrait; reverse with business card design with ornate scrollwork, town name spelled

E.Steele carte de visite, cameo style portrait; reverse with business card design with ornate scrollwork, town name spelled "Wisbeach"

Carte de visite, 1860s, unknown lady in criniline, painted backcloth with archway and country house and diamond pattern carpet. Reverse has heraldic design with garter cross keys, stag's head and crown. Town name spelled "Wisbeach".

Carte de visite, 1860s, unknown lady in crinoline, painted backcloth with archway and country house and diamond pattern carpet. Reverse has heraldic design with garter cross keys, stag's head and crown. Town name spelled "Wisbeach". We are most grateful to the Wisbech and Fenland Museum for permission to reproduce this image.

Carte de visite, 1860s, unknown lady in criniline, painted backcloth with open window and garden, with ornate table and bottle. Reverse has heraldic design with garter cross keys and Latin motto. Town name spelled "Wisbech".

Carte de visite, 1860s, unknown lady in crinoline, painted backcloth with open window and garden, with ornate table and bottle. Reverse has heraldic design with garter cross keys and Latin motto. Town name spelled "Wisbech". We are most grateful to the Wisbech and Fenland Museum for permission to reproduce this image.

E.Steele carte de visite, 1860s, Political cartoon by unknown artist. Reverse has heraldic design with garter cross keys and Latin motto. Town name spelled "Wisbech".

E.Steele carte de visite, 1860s, Political cartoon by unknown artist. Reverse has heraldic design with garter cross keys and Latin motto. Town name spelled "Wisbech". We are most grateful to the Wisbech and Fenland Museum for permission to reproduce this image.

Carte de visite, 1860s, unknown lady in criniline, plain background. Reverse has  garter design and engraving of globe and cherubs. Town name spelled "Wisbech".

Carte de visite, 1860s, unknown lady in crinoline, plain background. Reverse has garter design and engraving of globe and cherubs. Town name spelled "Wisbech". We are most grateful to the Wisbech and Fenland Museum for permission to reproduce this image.

Name:    STENNETT, George b:28/3/1912       d:
Address: "Bentley" Allen Road, Peterborough
Working Dates: c.1939
Subjects, styles, advertising, other relevant information: The 1939 Register lists George as a "press photographer and process engraver Dept Manager", living at the above address with his wife Edith M Stennett b:1/7/1914. No further details known.
References: 1939 Register

Name:    STEWART, Barry b:       d:
Address: 5 Fairfields, Huntingdon, St Ives
Working Dates: c.1999
Subjects, styles, advertising, other relevant information:
References: Peterborough Yellow Pages 1999

Name:    STEWART, John Thomas b: 1837 Boston Lincolnshire       d: 1913
Address: A caravan at Front Street, Warboys
Working Dates: c.1861 in Cambs, then a period travelling followed by a longer photographic career in Oxfordshire.
Subjects, styles, advertising, other relevant information: John started his photographic career as a travelling photographer. In the 1861 census John and his wife Ellen M. Stewart b:1841 Westminster were sleeping in a caravan in Front Street Warboys. John's occupation was shown as a photographic painter. In 1871 John and wife Eleonor M Stewart and their 8 month old son Orford, were in a caravan at Leicester Road, Lutterworth. By 1881 John had re-married (Helen S Stewart b: 1837 Buckingham), and settled at London Road Bicester where John was a photographic artist. By this timer they had two children, Orford b: 1870 Lutterworth and Harriett b: 1873 Bicester. By 1891 both John and wife Helen were photographers on the Market place at Bicester. The backs of their cartes de visite bear both names. In 1901 John was a widower, still operating as a photographer in Water Lane Bicester. Some of John's cartes de visite carry a masonic emblem. He was a member of Jersey Lodge Bicester, No 2334 from 1904 - 1908, but was already a Brother when he joined that Lodge and had been initiated in 1887. By 1911 John had retired - he was suffering from "senile decay" and living at 7 Cemetery Road, Bicester. He died in 1913.
References: England Census 1861, 1871, 1881, 1891, 1901, 1911.


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This page was last modified: 26 February 2020, 14:54

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