Advertising by Photographers (1) Daguerreotypist, G. White of Rose Hill Chesterfield

Photographers themselves needed to advertise too. In the 1850s and 1860s, much of this was done through the local newspapers. Some early photographers would also have flyers or handbills printed, to distribute in advance of a visit to a town. Since many of these early travelling or itinerant photographers did not include their names on the mount or case of the daguerreotype or ambrotype, the advertisements may sometimes be the only means we now have of knowing that a photographer operated in a particular area. This copy of one such early handbill was kindly sent to me by Mike Spencer, who found it in the holdings of the Derbyshire Record Office at Matlock (Ref. D267/96/2(i)).

Begs to acquaint the Inhabitants of Chesterfield and its neighbourhood, that for a short time he will take at the above place pleasing

Photographic Portraits,
Either in Single Figure or Groups.
Nothing can possibly equal the beauty of detail and faithful Likenesses of these portraits.
G. WHITE will also take his
from the plain bust to the highly finished whole length figure.
Keeps constantly a variety of suitable Frames for the Daguerreotype Portraits and Paper Cuttings.
Open from 9 in the Morning till 8 in the Evening.

This advert is probably from the 1850s. However, I’ve been unable to find any other record of Mr. G. White’s photographic career. The 1851 and 1861 Census, and White’s 1857 Trade Directory (transcribed and presented online by Neil Wilson), show nobody by this name in any profession, at least living in Chesterfield. I’d appreciate any information whch might shed light on his identity and time in Chesterfield.

John Edward Roberts (1830-1908) was a Chesterfield postmaster, bookseller, printer & stationer with premises on the High Street.


~ by gluepot on Sunday, February 17, 2008.

2 Responses to “Advertising by Photographers (1) Daguerreotypist, G. White of Rose Hill Chesterfield”

  1. >I wonder if the wording does not suggest that he was an itinerant photographer? No full address is given, maybe he was to set up in the street?Chesterfield is well linked by rail from Leicester and Derby to the south, and Sheffield Doncaster and Leeds to the north, and many other places of course.

  2. >Yes, I think you may be right, Nigel. Photographers were far more itinerant in the 1850s anyway. More research needs to be done here, I think. Regards, Brett

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