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Smaller Sizes of Portrait - Photographers in England - South West Region

We have divided England into Geographical Regions in order to keep the page sizes manageable for our listings of stickyback photographers. All the regions are listed here. Within each regional page, practitioners are listed by location alphabetically. If you are looking for a practitioner by name, start with our page "Smaller sizes of portrait - photographers by name"

South West Region, includes: Somerset, Bristol, Gloucestershire, Swindon, Wiltshire, Dorset, Devon, Cornwall. Locations included so far are: Bath, Bristol, Cheltenham, Falmouth, Helston, Ilfracombe, Launceston, Newquay, Penzance, Plymouth, Redruth, Salisbury, Stroud, Swindon., Truro, Weston-super-Mare , Yeovil, Other stickyback news stories from the South West.

BATH

Address: Shirley Villa, Beechen Cliff, Bath
Possible practitioner: WILLWAY, THEOPHILUS CHARLES (1860-1927)
Operating dates: 1914 - listed as a photographer in local directories 1911, 1919 and 1923
Information and references: Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette - Saturday 21 November 1914 p1."Post all sticky backs lately taken to be enlarged for Xmas cards . Permanent process Willway, enlargement specialist, Beechen Cliff, Bath. One cabinet 2s"
PO Directory of Bath 1911, Kelly's Somerset Directory 1919, 1923. Full details of Theophilus Charles Willway can be found in "Secure the Shadow, Somerset Photographers 1839-1939" by Robin Ansell, Allan Collier and Phil Nichols.

Address: 23 Westgate Street, Bath
Possible practitioner: BOULTWOOD, SIDNEY (1882-1958)
Operating dates: 1914-15
Information and references: Stickybacks Studio, 23 Westgate Street, Bath, 1914-15. One of Sidney Boultwood's Sticky Back Studios, listed on David Simkin's excellent site on Sussex Photographers at www.photohistory-sussex.co.uk/BoultwoodStickyBacksStudio.htm where you will find the full history of Sidney Boultwood (1882-1958) and his family. David Simkin has an example of a stickyback photo from this studio on his site at www.photohistory-sussex.co.uk/BoultwoodBrydenWestgateBath.jpg. Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette - Saturday 11 April 1914 p2, contained this advertisement: "Grand Opening To-Day. You must visit the Original Mr Stickybacks Electric Studios (from Strand, London, and Provinces) 23 Westgate Street (near Theatre and Palace) Bath. Just a snapshot of yourself for 6d doz. They've all got Stickybacks. Enormously popular." In the same newspaper, page 9, it was reported: "New Electric Studio. As will be seen from an advertisement in our public notices column Mr "Stickyback" has today opened an electric studio for midget photography. These studios have been very popular in other towns, and no doubt the business opened today will prove an attraction in this busy thoroughfare." Obviously the studio did prove to be popular as the firm was advertising for "bouncers" in the Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette Sat 8 Aug 1914 p1. "Doormen, two wanted; men used to theatre preferred; only smart young men with good references entertained; permanencies to right men - Full particulars to Studios, 23 Westgate Street Bath or 84 High Street Cheltenham."

1914 advertisement for the opening of the Stickyback Studio at Westgate Street, Bath.

BOURNEMOUTH

Address: 120 Old Christchurch Road, Bournemouth
Possible Practitioner: The Texas Photo Co
Operating dates: c. 1903-1911
Information and references: See the entry for The Texas Photo Co under Bristol below

Top of page

BRISTOL

Address: 10 St Augustine's Parade, Bristol
Possible practitioner: ?BOWDEN BROS
Operating dates: 1903, 1904
Information and references: Western Daily Press - Tuesday 22 December 1903 P7."They've all got sticky backs at the Polytechnic Studio St Augustine's Parade" (Bristol).
Western Daily Press - Friday 08 January 1904 P8 through to April 1904. "They've all got Sticky Backs except you. Call early and get them at 10 St Augustine's Parade, Bristol". According to Kelly's Directory of Bristol 1902 Bowden Bros, photographers were at 10A St Augustine's Parade. There was another photographer Sargent Bros, at no 7 and a photographic materials dealer, P and A Robertson was at No 6. It is not known whether Bowden Bros were at this address in 1903-4

Address: Polytechnic Studio, Tramway Centre, Bristol, Polytechnic Studio, 10 St Augustine Parade, Tramways, Bristol
Possible Practitioner: LEWIS, JACK
Operating dates: c.1903 - 1912
References: The first stickyback or stamp photo below, just over 1.5 x 1.5 inches, of an unknown young woman in a huge picture hat, is from around 1905-10. There is no “stickyback” sign board to identify the photographer. Instead, we have, in the RH border, a more complex numbering device, with numbers behind tiny windows, to link the negative number and image together. This may be a physical numbering display within shot, or could possibly be the image from an in-camera numbering device. The photo seems to have come from a strip and the torn edge on the left hand side suggests the images were in a side-by-side strip. On the reverse is a partial rubber stamp. This stamp is repeated side-by-side, with two partial images remaining. We can piece these together to read “Jack Lewis”, “Tramways”, and the third word is possibly “Centre”. After posting this image on this site as "location unknown", we have been contacted by Mike Francis who has a similar photograph in a family album, dated 26 December 1906. Mike has kindly provided from his photograph the full details of the photographer's backstamp, confirming his name and address.
A second image has now been added below. We are grateful to Rowena Godfrey for allowing us to include this pair of photographs of her great-grandmother, Helen Griffin, who lived in Bristol. The two photographs together are 2.75 x 1.5 inches and this rare pair demonstrates the fact that the photographs were supplied in horizontal strips for the customer to cut up. Again a numbering device has been used to add a negative number to the image. This appears to be a different device from the previous example - the spacing of the digits is different and the second example contains a symbol in the centre. Rowena dates her photographs from after 1906 and so this numbering device must be assumed to have replaced the other example. This second example does not have the sitter evenly placed in the frame. This could be the product of a multi-lens camera with slight misalignment of the lenses, or it could be a defect introduced in printing the strip.
Jack Lewis took over the studio of Bowden Bros (see above). In the Western Daily Press 26 December 1903 p3, is an advertisement which shows Jack was focused on high volume low price work, offering "Photographs by the Mile, 14 for 6d at Jack Lewis's Polytechnic Studio Tramway Centre". The Western Daily Press 16 November 1907 records a burglary at Jack Lewis's premises in St Augustine Parade. Local trade directory entries for him continued until 1912.

Stickyback by Jack Lewis, Bristol

rare pair of images by Jack Lewis, Bristol

Address: Bristol Bridge.
Possible practitioner: WILLETT, HENRY R.
Operating dates: 1904
Information and references:Clifton and Redland Free Press - Friday 26 August 1904 p2. "Willett, Photographer, Bristol Bridge. Reduced prices. 12 Stickybacks 1/-, 12 Cartes de Visite 3/6, 12 Cabinets 6/6" . Henry Willett was a professional photographer in Bristol from the late 1870s, earlier addresses included 10 St Augustine's Parade (1879)

Address: 27 Castle Street, Bristol
Possible practitioner: SEAMAN, H.O.
Operating dates: 1905
Information and references:Western Daily Press of Friday 03 November 1905 P9
Theft of "Sticky-Backs" promotional discount tickets value one shilling from H.O.Seaman's photographers, 27 Castle Street, Bristol - offender sentenced by court to 5 years detention. See our page on Seaman photographer's.

Address: 19 Castle Street, Bristol
Possible practitioner: Not yet identified
Operating dates: 1923
Information and references:Western Daily Press - Wednesday 25 April 1923 p2. "Ladies required, experienced in photography, apply Sticky Backs 19 Castle Street".

Address: 41 High Street, Bristol
Possible practitioner: The Texas Photo Company
Operating dates: 1901-02
Information and references: This is one of at least three Texas Photo Company studios which appeared in the UK between 1901 and 1903 and which have left traces in local newspapers. The earliest reference is in the Western Daily Press, Wednesday 12 June 1901 p2: "Photographer wanted. State age, salary and experience. Call or write - Texas Photo Co 41 High Street, Bristol." It would seem that the business offered personalised photographic badges and brooches but these didn't prove to be as popular as anticipated. In the Western Daily Press, Monday 17 February 1902, p1, they advertised: "Latest invention. American MACHINE for making buttons and brooches for sale. Texas Photo Co 41 High Street". Then, the following day, in the Western Daily Press, Tuesday 18 February 1902, p3, they advertised: "Good business for disposal, no experience required, call for information. Texas Photo Co 41 High Street". No trace has been found of the individual behind this apparently short lived enterprise, but we can see how these firms operated from advertisements from and reports of two other Texas Photo Co studios, in Lincoln and Bournemouth. In the Lincolnshire Echo, Tuesday 15 April 1902 p2 is a report "Latest thing on earth. The Texas Photo Co of San Antonio, Texas, USA, the largest popular priced photo company in the world, have opened a branch gallery in this city, and to introduce their new work and machines they will make, for a few days only, their new famous photographs. 12 for 6d and 12 for 1s. Photo buttons of yourself 6d and 1s. "You get your money's worth" at the Texas Gallery over Wilson's shop 311 High Street, Lincoln." Although this report talks about this being a branch of an American Company, it is possible that this was some sort of franchise arrangement. The next week they were advertising for an operator: Lincolnshire Echo, Monday 21 April 1902 p1; "Wanted photographer: must be sober, reliable and not afraid to work. State age, married or single and salary expected. Texas Photo Co 311 High Street, Lincoln." Then there were two advertisements in August 1903 suggesting that further expansion was planned in the South of England. In the Bournemouth Daily Echo, Saturday 15 August 1903 p3 was an advert; "Photography. Wanted, young man for midgets at once; state age and salary required; no spec, Texas Photo Co 120 Old Christchurch Road, Bournemouth." Then in the Bournemouth Daily Echo, Tuesday 25 August 1903, p1, "Wanted, room, unfurnished over business premises, in main street, for midget photography, at Southampton, Portsmouth, or Winchester. Particulars to Texas Photo Co, Old Christchurch Road, Bournemouth. According to Kelly's 1911 Hampshire Directory The Texas Photo co was still operating at 120 Old Christchurch Road, Bournemouth. There may have been other branches.
Below is an example Texas Photo Co portrait of an unknown man. The white card mount 2.5 x 2.8 inches, has a stipple and floral embossed design with "Texas Photo" embossed on the bottom margin. The reverse is blank. The stuck-down photograph measures 1.4 x 1.2 inches. Below this is a postcard format full length portrait of an unknown lady. This has "Texas Photo co" printed on the face. A scratched-on negative number, 1658, can be seen on the right of the image at the level of the hem of the subject's dress. The reverse of the postcard has no information about the firm.

Texas Photo Co portrait of an unknown man

Postcard format portrait of an unknown lady, negative No 1658, by the Texas Photo co

Address: 14 Clare Street, Bristol
Possible practitioner: John TURNER, (1846 b. Vanshall Surrey)
Dates operating: 1888-91
Information and references: In 19th & 20th Century Professional Photographers in Bristol, RPS Photo Historian Autumn / Winter 2008, compiled by Roger Vaughan, with assistance from Sarah Riddle and Alice Rymill, John Turner is listed as a photographer at 14 Clare Street. This was probably John Turner, b. 1846 Surrey, (son of John Turner, chemist and druggist b.1815 Norton Fitzwarren, Somerset d.1892). In the 1881 census John Turner, b.1846, was a chemist and druggist living in Penge. In 1891 John was living at 10 Bellville View Bristol where his occupation was shown as a photographer, neither an employer or an employee. The image below is reproduced with the permission of Ron Cosens (www.cartedevisite.co.uk) and is of a midget carte de visite on a mount measuring 42 x 63mm. On the face of the mount is printed "Carte Mignonne". The reverse of the mount has a rubber stamp "J.Turner 14 Clare Street Bristol". It appears that the rubber stamp has been put together using something like a John Bull printing outfit and that the user had run out of the letter "R", or had poor eyesight - the name Turner is written as "TUBNEB". The carte depicts a military figure - we would welcome information identifying and dating the uniform.

midget carte by J Turner, Bristol reproduced with the permission of Ron Cosens www.cartedevisite.co.uk

CHELTENHAM

Address: 84 High Street Cheltenham
Possible practitioner: BOULTWOOD, SIDNEY
Operating dates: 1914
Information and references: There are a number of newspaper advertisements linked to this studio. Gloucestershire Echo - Monday 1 June 1914 P4."YOU MUST VISIT the original Mr Stickybacks ELECTRIC STUDIO With its novel methods of CINEMATOGRAPH PHOTOGRAPHY. CINEMATOGRAPHIC SNAPSHOTS OF YOURSELF. ENORMOUSLY POPULAR The Original Mr. STICKY BACK'S STUDIO From 420 Strand, London, Brighton, Oxford, etc., 84 HIGH STREET (near Bath Road) CHELTENHAM.". Gloucestershire Echo - Wednesday 3 June 1914 p5. "The Original Sticky Back Studio. High-street, seems to have become remarkably popular, judging by the crowds visiting the Studio lately. One is bound to admit that these little photographs are remarkably good, surprisingly so in fact, are extraordinarily good value. They are produced by the latest Cinematographic process, which accounts for tho marvellous rapidity with which they are taken. They are, as claimed, "just a snapshot of yourself", and they've all got stickybacks. Mr. Stickybacks Studio is at 84 High-street (near Bath road), Cheltenham". Gloucestershire Echo - Thursday 18 June 1914 p2. Active reliable man wanted for circular distribution, door to door, Stickyback, 84 High Street, Cheltenham. Bath Chronicle and Weekly Gazette Sat 8 Aug 1914 p1. " Doormen, two wanted; men used to theatre preferred; only smart young men with good references entertained; permanencies to right men - Full particulars to Studios, 23 Westgate Street Bath or 84 High Street Cheltenham". The studio at 23 Westgate Street Bath was one of Sidney Boultwood's studios, so the Cheltenham address must have been another of his premises. The studio at 84 High Street may have only occupied part of the address as a number of advertisements appeared in the press before and after June 1914 for J.Maxwell, fish merchant at 84 High St. Below are three example stickybacks from the 84 High Street Studio.

Three Stickybacks from 84 High St Cheltenham

FALMOUTH

Address: High Street Falmouth
Possible practitioner: Not currently known, aka West End Sticky Backs
Operating dates: 1915
Information and references: Cornishman - Thursday 25 November 1915 p1" NEXT WEEK ! FOR XMAS ! LOOK OUT FOR THE "WEST END" "STICKY BACKS" Opening at 84, Market Jew St., Penzance. Perfect Portraits at Popular Prices! Head and Shoulders - - 3s. Per Dozen. Three Quarter Figure - - 6d. „ (The West End Panels) LIFELIKE, WELL FINISHED, PERMANENT PHOTOGRAPHS Also at High Street, FALMOUTH.". No trace of a photographer in High St Falmouth in 1910 or 1914 Kelly's Directories.

Address: Church Street Falmouth, New Bridge Street Truro, Coinage Hall Street, Helston, Next Druids Hall, Redruth
Possible practitioner: William Marsden Harrison (1852 - )
Operating dates: 1877-1905
Information and references: See below a midget carte de visite, 33 x 51 mm, of an unknown young girl. The buff card mount is manufactured and printed by Marion and Co. On the face of the carte is printed "Harrison's Midget Photograph" It is an unusual feature to find a midget photograph labelled as such. On the reverse is printed "Medallist. W.M.Harrison, The Studios, Church St Falmouth, New Bridge St Truro, Coinage Hall St, Helston, Next Druids Hall, Redruth. Copies 81mm. On this example the photographer has labelled the product as a "Promenade Midget". The full text printed on the face of a glossy black mount states "W.M.Harrison, Promenade Midget, Falmouth, Truro, Helston, Redruth" The imagor enlargements may be obtained." Below this is another midget carte by the same photographer. This carte is slightly larger than the previous example and measures 40 xe, which has faded badly, is of an unknown young woman. The reverse of the carte is blank. We are most grateful to Ron Cosens (www.cartedevisite.co.uk) for permission to use these images from his collection. Roger Vaughan has detailed information on the firm and examples of their normal sized cartes de visite here: http://freepages.rootsweb.com/~victorianphotographs/history/harrison/harrison.htm. The firm operated from 1877 to 1905, and had the above studio addresses by the 1890s. The examples below are likely to be from the latter days of operation and shows a firm, which had hitherto prided itself on top quality photography, diversifying into cheaper work to go with their other more traditional offerings. WM Harrison was in receivership by October 1905.
Royal Cornwall Gazette - Friday 26 October 1877 p8 announcement of the birth of the son of W.M.Harrison, photographer, Falmouth.
West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser - Thursday 17 July 1879 p6: petition filed in Truro Bankruptcy Court by William Marsden Harrison photographer, liabilities £800
Cornishman - Thursday 24 March 1881 p7 W.M. Harrison, photographer, granted his discharge.
Lake's Falmouth Packet and Cornwall Advertiser - Saturday 24 June 1882 p1 WM Harrison opening new studio in Falmouth in the next two weeks.
Lake's Falmouth Packet and Cornwall Advertiser - Saturday 24 August 1901 p5 offering platinotype and carbon prints, awarded over 30 medals
Cornishman - Thursday 26 October 1905 p5 receiving order made against W M Harrison.

Midget carte by W.M.Harrison. We are most grateful to Ron Cosens (www.cartedevisite.co.uk) for permission to use this image

Promenade midget carte by WM Harrison, with permission of Ron Cosens www.cartedevisite.co.uk

HELSTON

See W.M.Harrison, listed above at Falmouth.

ILFRACOMBE

Address: Atlanta Pier Road, Ilfracombe
Possible Practitioner: Not Currently known
Operating dates: ?1905
Information and references: This address appears on the reverse of the stickybacks mount from 48 Biggin Street Dover

LAUNCESTON, Cornwall

Address: Church Street, Launceston, Cornwall
Possible practitioner: William Smale CATER (1852-1930) trading as W.S.Cater & Co
Dates of operation: 1888-1910
Information and references: The photo below, of an unknown lady in large picture hat, measures approximately 1.3 x 1.4 inches and is mounted in a white card mount embossed with a floral border, 2.3 x 3.2 inches, with an aperture 0.85 x 1.2 inches. The rear of the mount has a paper backing sheet pasted on to hold the photo in place and stamped on the paper sheet is a rubber stamped artist's palette and the words "W.S.Cater & Co Photo Artists Launceston". The photo probably dates from 1905-10. Census returns for 1881,1891,1901 and 1911 show William Smale Cater not as a photographer, but primarily as a printer, and also a bookseller and stationer, and an employer. However he is recorded in the 1906 Kelly's Directory as a photographer at Church Street, Launceston. According to the local press W.S.Cater was a photographer in Launceston from at least 1888 when he was advertising local topographical views, cartes de visite and cabinet photographs in the Cornish and Devon Post. His mode of advertising was in the form of a letter of praise from a grateful customer, followed by details of the firm. By 1910 the firm was still advertising, apparently offering top class portraits - their advertising included a classic line drawing of a well dressed couple and the text: "When she wants a portrait of him, or he one of her we make them in the kind that pleases". Although they were listed as photographers in the 1906 directory there is no trace of the firm in the 1910 or 1914 Kelly's directories. William submitted seven photographs to Stationers' Hall for copyright purposes: one in 1888 depicting two blind beggars, the others, in 1906, all showing old fashioned pre-mechanisation harvest scenes. The firm may have been targeting a new client base with less expensive portraiture in its closing years. Below are two of Cater's earlier more traditional products, two midget cartes de visite on mounts 3 x 1.6 inches. The photo on the right of an unknown lady is probably the older of the two, on a cream mount with "W.S.Cater & Co Launceston" printed on the face. The image of an unknown man, on the left of the pair, is on a thicker ivory high gloss mount, with the same text on the face. Both midget cartes have blank reverses. There is an article about William Smale Cater, and his portrait, on Roger Pyke's excellent site "Launceston Then".

Tiny portrait by W.S.Cater

Two cartes by W.S.Cater

NEWQUAY

Address: Newquay - address not currently known
Possible Practitioner: Not currently known
Operating Dates: c.1908
Information and references: We are most grateful to Rachael Grant for permission to reproduce below a stickyback portrait of an unknown young woman wearing spectacles, beneath a sign board for a Newquay Studio. This photograph is from an album containing a number of other images from Cornwall and the South West and so is almost certain to be from Newquay Cornwall. To date no newspaper advertisements have been found for the opening of a new stickyback shop in Newquay. It is possible that an existing local photographer started to offer cheap work for visitors, but is more likely that someone set up a studio for this type of cheap work and operated until the novelty of the product started to wear off. Existing photographers in Newquay from local Kelly's Directories of the period were:
1906
Wallace Bennetto, Fore St Newquay
Edwin J Ellery, Commercial Sq Newquay (also had a studio at Truro,)
Griffiths R.P. Commercial Square, Newquay
Oliver McNee 3 Victoria Parade Newquay
1914
W.Bennetto W. (Color) 92 Fore Street, Newquay
Page and Co 56 East Street, Newquay, 1914

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PENZANCE

Address: Causewayhead, Penzance
Possible practitioner: Not currently known
Operating dates: 1913-1930
Information and references: Three newspaper advertisements for stickyback studios have been found, which are believed to come from the same firm, on account of the consistency of language and message. One of these advertisements is for a studio at Causewayhead, Penzance; the others relate to Croydon and Hull. The Cornish Telegraph, Thursday 24 April 1913 p1 carries an advertisement: "The original sticky backs will open on Thursday April 24th at Causewayhead Penzance (next to cinema). In order to advertise our American Automatic Photography. By presenting this coupon you are entitled to 1 doz photographs of yourself at half price 3d." Two years earlier the Croydon Chronicle and East Surrey Advertiser, Saturday 22 April 1911 p13 carried a similar advert: "Sticky backs, Half Price Coupon In order to advertise our American Automatic Process of Photography by presenting this half price coupon you are entitled to 1 doz photographs of yourself for 3d at 127 North End Croydon (opposite Empire Music Hall). Cut this coupon out." The third advertisement was placed, two months after the Cornish ad, in the Hull Daily Mail, 27 June 1913 p6: "Stickybacks, 17 King Edward Street, Hull. In order to advertise our American Automatic process of photography by presenting this coupon to the lady at the desk you are entitled to 1 dozen lifelike photographs of yourself for 3d (half price) Save this Coupon, the value of which is 3d and don't forget to bring it with you, Every picture lifelike and guaranteed perfect". There is no trace of a photographer in Causewayhead in Kelly's Cornwall Directory 1914. There are no photographers listed at the Hull address in the 1913 Kelly's Directory of N and E Ridings of Yorkshire.

Another advertisement for the same Croydon studio had appeared a little earlier in the Croydon Chronicle and East Surrey Advertiser - Saturday 18 March 1911 p12 and 25 March 1911 p13. This allows us to link the Croydon studio (and therefore to the Hull and Causewayhead studios) with two others. The advertisement reads: "Sticky Backs from 356 Strand, and Brighton, have now opened a Croydon Branch, 127 North End (opposite Empire) and have no connection with any other firm in Croydon". The only trace found so far of a studio for this period at 356 Strand, is an advertisement in the Burton Observer and Chronicle on Thursday 20 August 1914 p1: "The Strand Studios Direct from 420 and 356 Strand London, now open for a short time only 19 Station Street Burton on Trent. Get a coupon."

David Simkin's research into Sidney Boultwood, who operated a number of stickyback studios, shows that he had connections with Croydon around 1911 and later had a studio, as yet not identified, which was "Opposite Empire". So Boultwood might have been the man behind the Causewayhead Studio. However, against this, David dates the Boultwood "Opposite Empire" studio at around 1917 www.photohistory-sussex.co.uk/BoultwoodFamilyGallery.htm .

From the dated examples of Stickybacks we show below, we can see that the Causewayhead studio operated in Penzance from 1913 until around 1930 and so it seems likely that both the Penzance and Hull studios were operated simultaneously. We don't know whether the Causewayhead stickyback shop was a permanent or seasonal, regular or irregular feature over this extended period. By 1930, in most places in the UK, stickybacks would have been a forgotten novelty of the past.

Another point to notice from the advertisements listed above is that the Causewayhead advertisement is the only one which doesn't mention a street number in the address. One possible explanation for this could be that the studio was some sort of temporary structure - such as a booth, which didn't have a number. The Cinema at 16 Causewayhead is the Savoy, a building which opened in 1912 and still exists. Facing the Savoy building from the street, the shops to the right look like a more modern fill-in than other buildings in the street, so perhaps there was a yard next to the cinema, and perhaps during the summer a photographer's booth appeared there.

Below are a number of examples of stickybacks from the Causewayhead studio. We are most grateful for permission from Rachael Grant to reproduce below three single portrait examples from her collection. From a number of examples in Rachael's collection, it can be seen that the quality of the products of this studio is quite variable. At one end of the spectrum there are examples where the sitter has been carefully posed rather than staring straight ahead at the camera. At the other end of the spectrum there are examples of poorly focused images and sitters off-centre. The variation in quality suggests that over time different individual photographers were behind the lens at this studio. Below Rachael's three photographs are six stickyback portraits from the collection of Andrew Greco, which are reproduced with his kind permission. A number of these are "double" portraits which show the complete "Stickybacks Causewayhead" sign board.

Also in both Rachael's and Andrew's collections are two stickyback photographs with "Penzance" on the sign board rather than "Causewayhead". From this limited number of collections these "Penzance" signs are far rarer than those from Causewayhead. This probably suggests that the Market Jew Street studio operated for a shorter period that at Causewayhead. We don't currently have a "double" portrait which shows the full "Penzance" sign board. There are similarities and dissimilarities in the two signboards. They both are in a plain sans serif font with the initial capital letter larger than the rest of the letters. The "Causewayhead" font is far more condensed than the "Penzance" one. Both have a full stop after the word. The font on the number ticket looks the same on both examples. But, it seems unlikely that a studio would use two different sign boards. The signs are probably hand painted by a local sign writer, which may be another reason for similarities. On balance, as a working hypothesis, as we know that there were two stickyback shops in Penzance, we have for the moment added the "Penzance" examples to the following, rather than this entry.

Stickybacks from Causewayhead, Penzance.

Three stickyback portraits from the Causewayhead shop, unknown sitters, from the collection of Rachael Grant.

Two sets of portraits from the collection of Andrew Greco

Two sets of portraits from the collection of Andrew Greco. These double width prints are around 2.4 x 1.5 inches. The person on our right in the right hand print is George Eddy, taken around 1918/19. George tragically was one of 31 Cornish Miners who lost his life in the Levant Mine Disaster at Pendeen on 20th October 1919. The other male is not known. The lady in the left hand image is Bertha Eddy, Née Wearne, the wife of George Eddy. Her image is believed to date from 1920s.

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Two more sets of portraits from the collection of Andrew Greco. William James Lawry (1914-1984) is in both pictures. He is the Grandfather of Andrew Greco. In the photo on the left he is with his mother, Janie Lawry, Née Edith Jane Eddy. William James Lawry was 16 when these photographs were taken and so 1930 is the best estimate of the date of these. The stickyback name and product would have been very unusual by the 1930s.

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Two further portraits from the collection of Andrew Greco, subjects unknown. The left hand photo is of the same man as in the photo above of Goerge Eddy, and so probably dates from 1918/19. The smaller photograph is 1.5 x 1.2 inches.

The Daily Mail reported on a find of a number of stickyback photos from the Causewayhead studio. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3410357/Treasure-trove-portraits-1910-Penzance-uncovered.html .

Address: 84, Market Jew St., Penzance.
Possible practitioner Not currently known: Possibly Norman Victor TRUDGEON (1888-1960).
Operating dates: 1915
Information and references: 84 Market Jew Street Penzance was a watch repairers and then a butchers shop between 1906 and 1910. The Cornishman on Thursday 25 November 1915 p1 carried an advertisement: " NEXT WEEK ! FOR XMAS ! LOOK OUT FOR THE "WEST END" "STICKY BACKS" Opening at 84, Market Jew St., Penzance. Perfect Portraits at Popular Prices! Head and Shoulders - - 3s. Per Dozen. Three Quarter Figure - - 6d. „ (The West End Panels) LIFELIKE, WELL FINISHED, PERMANENT PHOTOGRAPHS Also at High Street, FALMOUTH." There is no trace of a photographer at this number in Market Jew St in the 1914 Kelly's Directory of Cornwall. There were photographers at number 10 (Gibson and Sons, who described themselves as "Art photographers". ) and 68a (opening May 1913) (H.Opie and Sons, later Opie Ltd, with studios in Bond St London, Redruth, Falmouth, Truro, Helston and Camborne ). In 1920 a couple of small adverts for the sale of motorcycles, name the occupant of No 84 as Trudgeon. A Trudgeon family had another shop at 91 Market Jew Street and may or may not be related. In the Cornishman on Thursday 3 April 1913 p5 is a report of the funeral of William Edward Trudgeon aged 37. Mourners included Mr T Trudgeon (father) and Mr S Trudgeon (brother) The address of the family was 91 Market Jew Street. On 30 January 1924 The Cornishman congratulated Mr and Mrs Norman Trudgeon, 84 Market Jew Street, on the birth of a son, A 1939 local directory listed Norman Trudgeon as a photographer at 84 Market Jew Street. In a 1943 advertisement for a Rolleicord Camera, 84 Market Jew Street was "Camera House". Putting this all together we have Norman Victor Trudgeon (1888-1960) photographer, resident at a photographer's shop at 84 Market Jew Street from at least 1924 to 1939, but when he or other members of his family first occupied the shop we don't know. If it was as early as late 1915 he could have been the Stickyback operator.

We are most grateful for permission from Rachael Grant to reproduce below two example stickybacks believed to be from this studio from her collection. Below that are two further examples, sitters unknown, from the collection of Andrew Greco. See the entry above for more detail on these sign boards.

Stickybacks from Penzance studio

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Two portraits of unknown sitters 1.5 x 1.2 inches with a Penzance" signboard. From the collection of Andrew Greco.

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PLYMOUTH

Address: Bijou Studio, Union Street, Plymouth
Possible Practitioner: Believed to be PARRY, Marcus (b.1879 Camberwell)
Operating dates: c.1910 -
Information and references: See below, postcard portrait of a young woman "Phyllis", with the number "9353" in the top centre of the the image. On the reverse "Bijou Studios, Seaside Road, Eastbourne, High Street, Redhill, The Cliffe Lewes and Union Street Plymouth" and impressed in the bottom margin on the face "Bijou Studio, Seaside Road, Eastbourne" . This site on Sussex Photographers lists The Bijou Studio Seaside Road Eastbourne 1910+ with the name of the photographer: Marcus Parby / Parry / Perry. www.photohistory-sussex.co.uk/EBNEdirBC.htm. The 1911 census shows photographer and employer Marcus Parry, b.1879 Camberwell, living at 6 Central Buildings, Seaside Road, Eastbourne. Living with him was his wife, Fannie, b.1880 Plaistow, Essex, and children: May b.1900 Forest Gate, Victoria b.1901 Plaistow, and Marcus b.1903 Walthamstow. Also at the same address was Jennie Breach b.1890 Chichester, an employed photographer. In 1901 Marcus Parry was a steam driller at 115 Harcourt Road West Ham and next door to him was a photographer Frederick Breach b.1875 Bristol, and his family, including his daughter Nellie who was later to work as a photographer for Marcus. The 1915 Kelly's Directory shows Marcus Perry at both Seaside Road Eastbourne and as a photographer at 25 Cliffe, High Street, Lewes. (The 1909 and 1911 Kellys Directory shows a second photographer, J.R.Lizars, at Seaside Rd Eastbourne, at No 46. Also in Seaside Rd in 1909 was another photographer, Frederick C Cooper, at 18 Elms Buildings, Seaside Rd. By 1911 Cooper was at 37 Grove Rd Eastbourne. In both cases there are no corresponding entries for these photographers at Lewes, Redhill and Plymouth. ) Local Directories do not show a photographer in High Street Redhill. Union Street Plymouth was a popular location for photographers, with six firms there in 1910 and 1914 - none of these were "Bijou Studio" or Parry, Lizars or Cooper.

Postcard by Bijou Studio Eastbourne

Address: 169 Union Street, Plymouth
Possible practitioner: WALKER, Albert (1875- ?) trading as Stickybacks
Operating dates: c. 1912
Information and References: This entry was started after the discovery of a postcard format portrait, shown below, which carried the legend "Stickybacks 169 Union Street, Plymouth". From this a number of assumptions have been made, leading to the suggestion that the stickyback photographer involved was Albert Walker. We would really welcome any further information to substantiate or disprove this. Union Street Plymouth was a busy central thoroughfare where a number of photographers practiced their trade over the years. (Ten photographers were listed in this street in 1910) 169 Union Street Plymouth was a studio operated by photographer Henry Robert Yeo from 1890 to 1912. Yeo had royal patronage and had won a number of medals at photographic exhibitions. From 1903 he was a Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society. Yeo had positioned himself at the high end of provincial photographic work and was clearly not a stickyback photographer. On Thursday 14th March 1912, Yeo was selling up all his studio furniture and fittings, on the premises. (Western Daily Mercury 14 March 1912 p4). By 1914, 169 Union Street was the studio of Mrs A Hedger, photographer, who traded in her own name and continued there until at least 1926. Mrs Hedger also had a studio at 1 William Street, Devonport (Advertisement for staff in the Western Evening Herald 13 April 1916 p2). At some point, in the short period between 1912 and 1914, a stickyback photographer operated at the premises. The Western Daily Mercury, Tuesday 20 August 1912 P10, carried the report of a court case of an alleged assault that occurred on Union Street. Frederick A.C.Thompson, a private in the RMLI, was charged with assaulting Edgar R Webber who was employed by Messrs Walker, photographers, of Union Street. It appears that Webber was employed as a barker by the photographer and he accosted Thompson in the street outside the studio and asked him if he would like a dozen stickybacks. The offer was obviously misunderstood or not appreciated as Webber was knocked down in the street, followed while retreating into the photographer's shop and beaten in the face. Webber's account was corroborated by Arthur Usher, another of the photographer's employees. Thompson was convicted and fined £1. Reports of the assault case do not give a number for Walker's Union Street stickyback studio, but the postcard below, from "Stickybacks 169 Union Street Plymouth", suggests this was probably the address. But, there was a photographer called Albert Walker (b. Leatherhead 1875) listed in the Kelly's 1910 Devonshire Directory at 5 Union Street, East Stonehouse, Plymouth. So, was this where Fred Thompson's temper exploded or had Albert Walker moved to a better location further East along Union Street by 1912, taking up the premises vacated by Yeo, perhaps on a short lease? In the assault court case there was a dispute over the identity of the offender. Witnesses said the assailant was followed along Union Street and pointed out to a Constable by the victim. The complainant said that he followed the assailant for 30 to 40 yards and he, and the police officer, stated that the assailant was stopped outside The Grand Theatre (160 Union Street). This description would fit better with an address for the stickyback studio at 169, rather than 5 Union Street. The only other relevant information found about Albert Walker shows that in 1911 he was a photographer and an employer, resident at 25 Craven Avenue Lipson, Plymouth, with his wife Louisa and two step-sons aged 10 and 9 years. The postcard, mentioned above, reproduced below with the kind permission of "StSearcher", is believed to depict Mary Jane Collins (1840-1918), Mary Ann McLeod and her niece Jessie Matilda Elizabeth Netting. Mary Jane Collins lived in Devonport. The reverse of the postcard has printed across the left hand edge of the reverse side "Stickybacks 169 Union Street, Plymouth". The studio back-cloth in the image shows an out of focus window and curtain. After this entry was started, a number of stickyback photographs from this studio have been discovered, some of which are reproduced below. The larger ones, of multiple sitters, showing the complete width of the studio sign bar, measure approximately 2.3 x 1.7 inches. The smaller versions, with single sitters, showing only the address and negative number on the sign bar, measure around 1.5 x 1.2 inches. All of these have been cropped in various ways from strips of multiple images, sold 12 for three old pence.

postcard, Stickybacks 169 Union St Plymouth, property of StSearcher

reverse of postcard, Stickybacks 169 Union St Plymouth, property of StSearcher

Stickyback photos from 169 Union Street, Plymouth, c 1912

Stickyback photos from 169 Union Street, Plymouth c 1912

Address: 184 Union Street, Plymouth
Possible practitioner: ? William L BAILLIE, trading as The Novelty Studio.
Operating dates: 1907-1926
Information and references: See below small albumen circular print of a young woman pasted onto a heavy dark green card mount printed in gilt "Novelty Studio 184 Union Street, Plymouth". Image diameter 2 inches, mount 3.2 x 5 inches. Below this is a real photo postcard portrait of an unknown man, on the reverse of which is printed "The Novelty Studio, 184 Union Street Plymouth" . According to Kelly's Directories for Devonshire for 1910, 1914 and 1923 the photographer at 184 Union St Plymouth was William L Baillie. The earliest newspaper report mentioning the name "The Novelty Studio" in Plymouth is in The Athletic News, Monday 22 April 1907 p2 which carried a portrait of H.J.Lillicrap, a Rugby Union player from Devon, captioned "Photo by the Novelty Studio, Plymouth". From 1912 to 1924 a number of advertisements appeared in the situations vacant columns in the Western Morning News for staff for the Novelty Studio at 184 Union Street Plymouth, for re-touchers, receptionists, errand boys and bromide printers. Then in the Western Morning News Thursday 21 January 1926 p9 appeared an advertisement marking the closure of the studio: "Business premises to let - in March, suite of rooms at 184 Union Street (late Novelty Studio) suit dentist, photographer, hairdresser or as showrooms - Wheeler". Nothing further has been discovered to date about William L Baillie. There were at least three other "Novelty Studios" in the South of England, but, apart from similar studio names, no evidence has been found to date connecting any of them with the Studio at 184 Union Street. These were 3 High Street (Bargate) Southampton c. 1902-1923, Fore Street Devonport 1912 , 182 Commercial Road Portsmouth (1914 -1923, run by photographer David Davies, a report of whose businesses and bankruptcy appeared in the Portsmouth Evening News Mon 2 May 1932, p18) (dates shown are earliest and most recent newspaper mentions)

Circular image of unknown woman pasted onto green mount titled - Novelty Studio 184 Union Street, Plymouth

The Novelty Studio RPPC of unknown man

REDRUTH

See W.M.Harrison, listed above at Falmouth.

SALISBURY

Address: 6 Queen's Street, Salisbury
Possible Practitioner: ? Scotfold Ltd ?
Operating dates: Around 1919
Information and references: The three stickyback portraits below, of two unknown men and a woman, are from a studio at 6 Queen's Street, Salisbury. A stickyback signboard with this address is clearly visible in the portrait of the woman, and can just be made out in the other two examples. The portraits are all trimmed to different sizes, widths 1.1 to 1.25 inches, heights 1.5 to 1.7 inches. There are no photographers listed at this address in the Kelly's Directories of Wiltshire for 1907, 1911, or 1915, but there is a photography firm named Scotfold Ltd at this address in the Kelly's 1920 Wiltshire Directory. Nothing further has yet been discovered about this firm of photographers from Companies House, The National Archives or The Gazette. There is a rather intriguing newspaper advertisement featuring this address in the Western Gazette 7th November 1913 p6 "Girl (18-25) wanted at once for illusionary show. Must be pretty and intelligent. Good wages. Apply Panopticon, 6 Queen Street Salisbury". This suggests that the premises may have been used at that time for some sort of visual entertainment. At the present time neither of these can be positively linked to the Stickyback photographer at this address.

Three stickybacks from 6 Queen Street, Salisbury

STROUD

Address: 7 George Street, Stroud
Possible practitioner: Benson's Photo Studio. BENSON, JOSEPH FRANCIS (1851-1913)
Operating dates: 1905
Information and references: Gloucester Citizen - Saturday 10 June 1905 P4. " Notice Benson's Photo Studio, 7 George Street, Stroud. Special prices during Whitsuntide Highly finished enamel four cabinets 2s 6d; sticky backs 6d per dozen". 1901 Kelly's Directory of Gloucestershire lists Benson at Charfield as an artist and photographer. 1906 Kelly's Directory of Gloucestershire lists Joseph Francis Benson at a photographer at 7 George Street Stroud and at "Langleigh" Charfield Glos. By 1911, Benson, still living at Charfield, described himself as a retired photo artist.

SWINDON

Address: 15 Regent Street, Swindon
Possible practitioner: not currently known, but possibly E.Carr
Operating dates: not currently known, some point between 1903 and 1917
Information and references: The Family Museum has indicated an interest in a Stickybacks Exhibition to be held at the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery, and have displayed three images from this Swindon Photographer at: http://britishphotohistory.ning.com/m/blogpost?id=2680769%3ABlogPost%3A111848 . Another image from this photographer has been posted on Flickr by Local Studies at Swindon Central Library, who suggest the photographer was E.Carr, and the date around 1915, https://www.flickr.com/photos/swindonlocal/41045405071/in/album-72157622046996426/ Local directories from 1903 and 1917 do not show a photographer at this address.

TRURO

See W.M.Harrison, listed above at Falmouth.

WESTON-SUPE MARE

Address: Weston super Mare, 23 Regent Street, 1 Royal Arcade, See 7 High Street Birmingham, entry for Crown Studios

YEOVIL

Address: Yeovil, precise address not yet known
Possible operator: Not currently known
Operating dates: c.1915
Information and references: Western Chronicle, Friday 9 July 1915 p6, in a report of a Yeovil court case, Kate Newman, a married woman whose husband was serving in the army in France, was charged with neglecting her children. She was convicted and imprisoned for 3 months with hard labour. Among the many allegations heaped upon the poor woman about her lifestyle, she was accused of regularly entertaining another soldier at her home. At one point it was alleged that the second visiting soldier had been showing his friends a photo of the defendant, who he described as his "second love". When asked by the police whose photograph he had been showing, he said it was of a relative from Manchester. An officer asked to see the photograph. When the soldier produced it the officer saw immediately that at the top of the photo was "Stickybacks Yeovil". It is interesting to note that the officer disproved the soldier's statement by demonstrating the source of the photograph rather than identifying it as a likeness of the defendant! Perhaps the likeness was not that good.


OTHER STICKYBACK NEWS ITEMS FROM THE SOUTH WEST.

St. Austell Star, Thursday 10 January 1907 p6, carried a report of the arrest of two prolific juvenile burglars. Detectives found a stash of stolen goods hidden by the pair, but they had left with their spoils a stickyback photograph of one of them, which allowed detectives to establish their identity and make arrests.

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www.stickybacks.uk is a non-commercial web site for local and family historians, exploring smaller sized portrait photographs and those who worked in this trade.
This page was last modified: 04 November 2021, 18:40

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