British photographic history

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Hi all. I am currently researching the supposed prevalence of Tintypists operating in Seaside towns in the UK and on beaches. My initial focus was on Scottish Seaside towns owing to the hunch that the Tintype was more popular there than it was in England. I was wondering if anyone out there knew anything about this or (now i'm really stretching) where I might be able to find any primary material or even writing on the subject?



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Gavin - I have a couple of examples in my collection; the tintype is inserted inside a printed card sheet printed with a tree. Sadly no locations given. Can scan if any help. Simon

HI Simon - that sounds great, i would love to see them regardless of where they were taken! You can email me on if you like.


It's worth having a search on Flickr - the phrase 'beach tintype' comes up with lots of great examples.

Normal caveats apply about trusting users' info etc. And sadly many don't have locations or dates (though it may be possible to determine these from clues in the pictures).

There are also some relevant Flickr groups on the subject of seaside photos and on tintypes.  It may be worth posting a request there, you never know what might turn up:

Thanks James Morley. Sometimes its the most obvious things you don't think of! I will give it a try. Cheers. Gavin

Hello Simon

I did some work on ferrotypists in the past which was published in my book on The Victorians: Photographis Portraits (1993), and also in 'Cheap Tin Trade: The Ferrotype Portrait in Victorian Britain', Photographica World, No.69 (June 1994), 17-28. You should also contact Colin Harding at Bradford as I believe he is still actively researching itinerants.

Best wishes



Must admit while Flickr often has some nice images, my attempts to get people to contribute material to the walking picture project when I've found good examples there has been often fruitless. 

Dear Audrey,

thank you for the suggestions. I have seen your book on the Victorians  but not the article you mention so will search that out. I know Colin up at Bradford and he has shared his interest in the subject so I shall be in touch with him again.

Thanks again,


Hi, You've probably seen this already but thought I'd post just in case. Not Scotland but may help.

This resource is an astonishing one. Gavin - I picked another tintype up at the weekend, which is in a proper card frame a bit like a carte de visite with the studio name on the back - Liverpool in this case. The actual head and shoulder image is about the size of a postage stamp... Did you get the scans of the other two I sent?

Yes Simon, sorry that I haven't got around to replying. Thanks for those scans, they are nice Tintypes. I picked up a Seaside Tintype recently that also has a generic card frame - with sailboats on it - but no studio or production stamp. Is the one you got an actual Seaside Tintype? If so i'd like a scan for my research if poss? Thanks.

Tony, thanks for the tip. I have seen it and David Simon has been very helpful in my research.

Tony Richards said:

Hi, You've probably seen this already but thought I'd post just in case. Not Scotland but may help.


You might like to check out my website on gem and carte de visite tintypes: I have fresh information that is yet to be added. I will be including a fuller account of the medium in Australia in the book on the history of the carte de visite in Australia I am currently researching.

Cheers! Marcel (Brisbane, Australia).

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