British photographic history

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Congratulations! 125 years of Warrington Photographic Society

In 1886, some forty-seven years after Daguerre and Talbot announced their respective photographic processes, a group of enthusiasts met to form a Photographic Society with the aim of improving photography amongst it’s members. The Society was called The Warrington Amateur Photographic Society and it’s first President was Mr J T Down, Secretary and Managing Director of the Wilderspool Brewery.

To celebrate it's 125th year, the Warrington Photographic Society will be holding a special photo exhibition from 4 March-11 April 2011, details which can be found here

The Society is stil going strong and has its own website here: http://www.warringtonps.co.uk/

 

The Warrington Photographic Society has in its possession 652 glass 6x6cm (3.25 x 3.25 inch) lantern slides, which were the product of 21 workers, dating from 1891 to the early 1960s. There are some large gaps in dates, notably during the two World Wars also during the 1920s, but this collection is a fascinating historical record.

Although most workers were male, the few female members were extremely successful but sadly only a very few of their slides remain. There are a considerable number of slides which do not have titles or locations and unfortunately there are some with unknown authors. Some slides form part of lectures, but sadly no lecture notes survive.

Some of the slides are coloured. Early ones being hand tinted, some by the Paget process – a process using coloured rice crystals in the photographic gelatine. Society records show that a lecture on the Paget process took place in the Old Academy on 21st January 1919.

Owing to the fragile nature of the slides and the projection equipment required the Society only used to project a few slides once a year. However modern technology now allows the Society to view these slides easily thanks to a Lottery Grant.

Lottery Awards

The Society was awarded a Lottery award of £3350 in February 2006 for the purchase of a laptop, digital projector and to have the entire lantern slide collection professionally scanned and digitally cleaned. This was undertaken by a company call The Dot Foundry and they provided an excellent service.

The Society now has an archive quality scan of each image and a smaller file for use in projecting and display. This has made the collection alot more accessible and a touring lecture is now available.


Lecture

A lecture entitled Warrington PS Lantern Slide Collection is now available for booking. The lecture provides an overview of some of the best images in the collection and also some of the original slides can be displayed. The lecture is given by Martin Berry LRPS and can be tailored to suit an organisations or time requirements.
Lantern Slide Gallery

A small selection of the lantern slide images are available for viewing on this website.

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