British photographic history

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Obituary: William 'Bill' Barnes (1920-2019)

BPH has just learnt of the death of Bill Barnes, the film history and collector who died in July at the age of 99 years. Barnes, along with his twin brother John, who died in 2008, was a collector and historian of early British cinema. For a time their outstanding collection was on display as as the Barnes Museum of Cinematography in St Ives. John managed the collection and Bill continued to source objects for it at fairs and auctions around the country.

The museum closed and some of the collection ended up in Turin with the British material going to Hove Museum. John produced the five-volume The Beginnings of Cinema in England 1894-1901, although it was very much a joint effort. 

Bill continued to live in London until his death. 

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Comment by Bobbie Carnegie on December 2, 2019 at 12:15

Do we know if the brother's museum was 'broken up'? What aspect of the collection was 'stolen away' to Turin?


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