British photographic history

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Brunel Hawes Archive photography lots exceed expectations

An archive of Brunel material consigned by a descendant of Sir Marc Isambard Brunel was sold at auction on 2 November 2010 (click to see the full sale) by Tooveys in Sussex. Included in the sale were several items of photographic interest, click to see the full descriptions:

  • BRUNEL, Isambard Kingdom (1806-1859). - Robert HOWLETT and George DOWNES (photographers). A stereoscopic 'double' patent, titled on pink paper label verso '16. "The Leviathan" Steam Ship. Portrait of Mr. Brunel'. [London:] Photographic Institution, [n.d. but circa 1857?]. Overall card size 174 x 85mm. (images with arched top, each 75 x 73mm.). - And four other related images (stereocard views of the Great Eastern). Provenance: Lady Sophia Macnamara Hawes neé Brunel (1802-1878), sister of Isambard Kingdom Brunel (inscriptions verso). Sold for £17,000
  • BRUNEL, Isambard Kingdom (1806-1859). - Unknown photographer. A shaped photographic portrait of Brunel. [N.p.: n.d. but circa 1857 or earlier]. Irregularly shaped and laid down on thin card. (Faded). Provenance: Lady Sophia Macnamara Hawes neé Brunel (1802-1878), sister of Isambard Kingdom Brunel. Apparently a calotype, sold for £2200

  • HAWES, Sir Benjamin, (1797-1862), and Lady Sophia Macnamara HAWES neé BRUNEL (1802-1878). An album of topographical, military and portrait photographs, apparently assembled by or for Sir Benjamin and Lady Sophia Hawes. [N.p.: n.d. but circa 1857-1868]. Large 4to (283 x 226mm.), 66 leaves mounted with an original pencilled watercolour portrait of Lady Hawes by her daughter, dated 1865; 96 mounted photographic portraits (most carte-de-visite format, including 16 of royalty, a number accompanied by clipped signatures); 59 British topographical photographic views; 5 topographical photographic views of Canton (one inscribed 'taken by Corporal Wotherspoon R.E. April 1850' but torn into image area); 35 photographs of cannons, military equipment and constructions (one with associated label 'Photographic Establishment of the War Department'). (The majority slightly faded.) Original green morocco gilt, g.e. (scuffed, lower joint split). Note: Sir Benjamin served as Minister of War during the Crimean War. Sold for £13,000

  • DICKINS, Frederick Victor (1838-1915, ?compiler). - Unknown photographer. An album of mounted topographical photographs of Japan. [Japan: n.d. but circa 1870-1879.]. Folio (360 x 260mm.) 54 mounted photographs (most 210 x 283mm.); 35 mounted coloured scenes of Japanese life printed on cloth; 4 mounted Japanese botanical prints on paper, on 55 card leaves. Original green half-morocco (worn). Provenance: Thomas Dickins (Edgemoor House, Manchester, bookplate). Note: Frederick Victor Dickins, an orientalist of note and translator of Japanese literature, lived in Japan from 1871 to 1879. He appears to have annotated the album for Thomas Dickins. Sold for £4000

  • RAILWAYS. Unknown photographer. A fine side view of 'The Puffing Billy'. [N.p.: n.d. but circa 1855-1862.] 1 photograph (200 x 278mm.) backed onto paper with early manuscript caption slip. (Somewhat faded). Note: 'The Puffing Billy is one of the two earliest surviving locomotives. Sold for £750

  • PHOTOGRAPHS. A carte-de-visite album containing a good selection of photographs depicting 19th Century authors, scientists and others. [N.p.: n.d. but circa 1870-1890.] 4to (285 x 215mm.) 23 leaves with 140 carte-de-visite or cabinet photographs, a few with associated clipped signatures, subjects include C. Darwin, T. Huxley, L. Pasteur, T. Edison, H.W. Longfellow, N. Hawthorne, C. Dickens, E.A. Poe, Gen. R.E. Lee, Charles Peace, J.E. Millais. Original morocco (worn). Sold for £4000

  • TALBOT, William Henry Fox (1800-1877). A mounted calotype from 'The Pencil of Nature', with manuscript title to mount 'Bust of Patroculus' [n.p.: n.d. but 1843]. Calotype (143 x 139mm.) With ruled ink border, on original thin card mount (303 x 240mm.), with number '17' below lower-right corner of the calotype, and title in ink at lower-right corner of the mount. (Print faded, light soiling to mount). Note: plate 17, showing Talbot's plaster cast of a Hellenistic marble, from his 'The Pencil of Nature'. Sold for £600

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