British photographic history
Birthday: September 22
Kevin J. McCann
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Paula Fleming, Please see my blog regarding 'Gen Lee's Slaves' and GD Wakely. I would appreciate any helpful comments you might have on my blog post.
It's an interesting story how Zulay at NYPL was able to identify the Talkhouse images. In any event I happy that Zulay remembered!
The date on the Van Scoy item could help with the story. Attached is the card catalog from LIHS from 1867 identifying Latham's photo submittal in 1867. It looks like Van Scoy envelop date is DEC 18__??? Zulay has a query into BHS about Thomas Field at LIHS. I have requested a low resolution file of the Talkhouse images as referenced on card Catalogs which I hope to receive soon. It seems that any of these three Latham, Van Scoy or Field knew what Blackmore and /or Shindler were doing. Also attached is photo of Sylvester from NYPL.
I'll keep in touch.
Paula..I changed copy of email to pdf. It seems copy/paste doesn't work in the portal.Let me know if you can open and read.
I have some good news on Talkhouse images...original photos with dated correspondence. However, I've have problems with "limited character" use although message with this email portal although message is well below 5000 character usage. I'll try this email as a test and if works expect more.
Hi Paula…Thanks again for informative response. If you would like I can email copies of the card catalogues from the Brooklyn Historical Society library for your files. At this juncture my thinking is in line with the probability that the word was out that either the Smithsonian and /or Blackmore was collecting and taking photographs of American Indian delegations in Washington, DC and photographers were being paid for the service. I would assume that information was provided by the newspapers and journals at the time in Sag Harbor. Tooker was a friend and student of the Montauks and I’m sure it he would be following American Indian activities. Talkhouse was an extremely well known and liked Montauk Indian. It could be Latham thought why not Stephen Talkhouse as he was a famous Montauk. It appears for whatever the reason Lathan was instrumental in having the photo taken and promoting it for historical reasons probably those conveyed via Blackmore’s campaign. In any event for those appreciative of Montauk’s history we’re glad the photo was taken. Because of the date on the card it could be an original print. The whereabouts of the glass plates can only be guess. If they survived possibly comfortably resting is a basement, attic or some shelf. At some point I would like to try to have the BHS print authenticated.
Paula, I appreciate all aspects of your book. Thanks for your dedication to photography and getting this project published. The book taught me a handsome and amount about the important early days of American Photography. I would be happy to write a review on Amazon.
I enjoyed Fitzgibbons reference to Daguerre’s creation as the ”enchanter’s wane” and the stories associated with the images including the comments regarding the memorable and curious “Adonis and Venus” (entry 265). Of particular interest was (p.22) the “Lawyer’s” letter to the President of the United States mentioning Lewis and Clark which perhaps launched the many delegations traveling to the Washington, DC.
Again, many appreciations for comments. I’ll keep in touch.
Hope all is well. I thought I would give you a little update on the Talkhouse photo. The Brooklyn Historical Society (formerly Long Island History Society) has graciously responded to my query. The reference librarian wrote “We have a file in our Portrait Collection devoted to Stephen Pharaoh, which includes a photo accompanied by a slip describing the photo as “an original likeness taken for and presented by Eleazar Latham to the Long Island Historical Society. Sag Harbor, Aug.1867" A second response yielded 2 card catalogues with both nearly same the identifying language with one ending with “Presented by Eleazer Latham, 1868.” And the second ending in “Purchased by W.W. Tooker of Sag Harbor, 1881.” The reference librarian is unable to determine if it’s an original print but if it’s from 1867 it may well be an original print. Also, there were no references on J. Warner or Howell.
The one card would strongly confirm that Latham was definitely involved with the photo event. How it got to Schindler we don’t know but it did. What’s interesting point for me is the second card regarding Tooker’s purchase of a print. It’s not clear if the image was donated in 1881 or purchased in 1881. Tooker was the local Sag Harbor pharmacist and Latham was a local real estate broker so they probably knew each other. It’s safe to say Tooker and Talkhouse were friends as Talkhouse used to collect Indian artifacts for Tooker as early as 1865 when Tooker was about 20. Tooker was a friend of the Montauks as he studied their language, culture and place names. This life-long activity concluded in his 1911 book Indian Place Names on Long Island. Talkhouse died in 1879 and in 1881 when Tooker was 34 was about the same time he started photographing the east end.
The cards help with the puzzle and the search will continue at a later date. Have way too many other things to do.
I’ll keep in touch.
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