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London - 1841 to 1901

Portrait done by Frederick William WoodThere are always so many new and different collections put together as databases, the selection many times appears staggering. One that is quite different and could prove to be very useful to some in their family history research centers around the grand city of London in England and goes from 1841 to 1901. It is a database of names of individuals in the city over that time frame who were at one time a photographer. The taking of photos was solely a professional occupation in the 19th century – people did not have their own cameras.

This London 1841-1901 listing is in alphabetical form so start with the surname letter and look over the list of names. The list can be over several pages, so look at the numbers below the names to get the next list. Reminder an ancestor may have had a slightly different surname spelling or variation. Once you make a selection of a surname, click on it and several individuals will be listed – men and women. For example the name ‘Stephens’ had five individuals listed.

Any information from records known on that person will be listed. Included will be birth date, other family members, residence, years working as a photographer or included are those who were assistants or apprentices to photographers. If they are listed in different locations or had their photo studio at another address that will be listed along with dates.

What is special in several cases are those who were in other professions while being a photographer or prior to that career another occupation will be listed. When known, a death date is also provided.

You will find where brothers were working together as photographers or a brother had his sister as an assistant, so you can get some useful family history.

If you knew an ancestor in London to have been a baker don’t be surprised, they might have also worked in some form in a photographer’s studio.

Here is an example of info on George Swann:

Swann, George
Born in 1827.
STUDIO: 3, 4 & 5 Benyon Cottages, Hertford Road, Hackney 1870 – 1871. Succeeded by Edmund Hewson.
Died in West Ham 1880.

Example of Charles Paul Hancock (who had also been a house painter):

Hancock, Charles Paul
Born in Lambeth 1847.
3 brothers.
1881: photographic assistant living at 3 Ennersdale Road, Lewisham.
1901: house painter living in Lewisham.
Son of Charles Hancock.
Died in Greenwich 1919.

You will not find a photograph of these individuals in this database, but what a wonderful resource for a certain occupational field in London covering 60 years in the 19th century.

Photo: Portrait done by Frederick William Wood about 1890.

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