Over the past two years Anne Glennie has been kind enough to scan some astonishing images of Newcastle and Inverell from the Glennie Family Albums. Most are taken in Newcastle around the 1870s to the 1880s, and form great complement to other collections of images taken around the same time located within the George Freeman Album, see: https://uoncc.wordpress.com/2014/03/03/george-freeman/ the Holterman Collection https://hunterlivinghistories.com/2016/02/23/newcastle-1870s/ and those of the American & Australasian Photographic Company Sydney Office 11 Barrack Street – by [Henry] Beaufoy Merlin see http://acms.sl.nsw.gov.au/item/itemDetailPaged.aspx?itemID=420926 and here: https://www.artgallery.nsw.gov.au/collection/works/401.2014/
Anne said that the photographs were digitised from three photographic albums belonging to the Glennie Family from Moree. Many of the images appear to have to have been taken by Beaufoy Merlin or Slade Photographers, particularly those in and around Newcastle. She said that they were not certain who in the family they originally belonged as they could have been handed down.
“Doug’s great grandfather was Alexander Glennie. He and his brother, Arthur, had a Stock & Station Agency in Moree and the photographs were all found there. I believe Arthur (who never married) may have been interested in genealogy and collected them. Doug also has an ancestor, Thomas Wingate (1807-1869), who was the brother to his great great grandmother – Lucretia (Wingate) Fletcher (1813-1848). ” – Email from Anne Glennie to Gionni Di Gravio Monday, 19 September 2016 2:17 pm
Major Thomas Wingate (1807-1869), a retired English army officer and reservist with the NSW volunteers, was also an amateur artist and photographer. He arrived in Sydney ca. 1850, having served as lieutenant with the 2nd Queen’s Regiment of Foot in India, where he prepared a series of lithographs of the campaign. In 1854 he was commissioned as a Major commanding the 1st New South Wales Rifle Volunteers, the first local unit raised by an Act of the Legislative Council. In 1858 he married Eleanor Terry, nee Rouse, seventh child of Richard Rouse, builder of Rouse Hill House at Parramatta. Eleanor married twice, in 1831 to John Terry of Box Hill, and in 1858 to Wingate. Wingate lived at Percy Lodge, 22 Wylde Street, Potts Point from at least 1858 until his death in 1869. He also photographed the house and garden at Rouse Hill, ca. 1859-65. References:
Downey, M. “Major Thomas Wingate: an early Australian reservist”, Sabretache, June 2002; Historic Houses Trust of NSW website: http://www.hht.net.au/ – Email from Anne Glennie to Gionni Di Gravio Monday, 19 September 2016 2:17 pm)
“Wingate married Eleanor (Rouse) (formerly Terry) in 1856. He was a sketcher, amateur photographer and army officer. He would have been one of the earliest photographers in Sydney, so some of the photographs we possess could well have been his. As to which ones – who knows? One of the albums appears to have belonged to Lucretia Fletcher’s daughter – also Lucretia who married Alexander Glennie.” – Email from Anne Glennie to Gionni Di Gravio Monday, 19 September 2016 2:17 pm)
The Poster in the lower right of the photograph appears to read:
Thursday and Friday
My Wife’s Out!
And next to that sign
His Last Legs
Can’t quite get the in-between bits
American & Australasian Photographic Company Sydney Office 11 Barrack Street – Beaufoy Merlin
The images of Newcastle, and its public buildings may have formed part of the project, launched in 1870 by Beaufoy Merlin and his assistant Charles Bayliss to photograph all houses and buildings in Victoria and New South Wales. Merlin established the American and Australasian Photographic Company (A & A Photographic Company) in Melbourne. Merlin retired in 1872 and died on the 27 September 1873, so the images he took in Newcastle could be dated to between 1870-1872. Thanks to TROVE, we were able to zero in on an actual date! The Sydney Morning Herald, on the 15 October 1870 ran an advert for the A & A Photo. Company stating that:
“The public of Maitland are respectfully informed that the company will dispatch one of their vans on MONDAY EVENING, for the purpose of photographing (simultaneously with NEWCASTLE) every house in the town” – “Advertising” The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW : 1842 – 1954) 15 October 1870: 10. Web. 19 Jan 2017 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article13215143>.
The Newcastle Chronicle ran a series of advertisements beginning on the 22 October 1870 stating:
“THE AMERICAN & AUSTRALASIAN PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPANY are now engaged in photographing every House, Shop, and Public Building in Newcastle… JAMES FERGUSON, Agent, American & Australasian Photographic Company, Royal Exchange Hotel, Newcastle.” – “Advertising” The Newcastle Chronicle (NSW : 1866 – 1876) 22 October 1870: 4. Web. 19 Jan 2017 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article111141448>.
The advertisements continued up until 1 December 1870 where they announced that they were formally closing operations in Newcastle and moving to Maitland for the next phase of the Project.
“THE AMERICAN & AUSTRALASIAN PHOTOGRAPHIC COMPANY (SYDNEY, MELBOURNE AND NEW YORK), having now formally closed operations in Newcastle, have proceeded to Maitland, where they will probably remain about four weeks. Any parties whose residences, stores, &c., may have been omitted in the general scheme, can have them photographed by the Company, on their return from Maitland, provided they take a dozen copies…” – “Advertising” The Newcastle Chronicle (NSW : 1866 – 1876) 1 December 1870: 1. Web. 19 Jan 2017 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article111140790>.
So the Beaufoy Merlin photographs can confidently be dated to the 22 October 1870 – 1 December 1870, in what must have been like the 1870s version of “Google Earth”.
First mention that we have been able to locate of William Francis Roberts as a photographer operating in Newcastle, is in an 1876 advertisment for the City Photographic Company, Hunter Street Newcastle, where he describes himself as “Photographer to H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh and His Excellency the Governor. – “Advertising” Miners’ Advocate and Northumberland Recorder (Newcastle, NSW : 1873 – 1876) 1 January 1876: 9. Web. 20 Jan 2017 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article141049333>. By 1879, he was senior partner of the photographic firm Roberts, Richards & Co., in Sydney, but we’ve been unable to locate clear evidence of his advertised activities as a photographer in Newcastle, except for a mention in 1888 that he, as part of “Roberts & Co. Newcastle” had taken photographs of the wreck of the Susan Gilmore, which washed ashore near Shepherd’s Hill in 1884. – “WRECK OF THE SHIP BERBICE AT NEWCASTLE.” Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate (NSW : 1876 – 1954) 6 June 1888: 5. Web. 20 Jan 2017 <http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article135922106>. Given the description, we would date the image on the unidentified bearded gentleman to circa 1876.
Album of Images Digitised by Anne Glennie from the Glennie Family Albums – The “Red” Album.
Received by email 19 January 2017
Anne Glennie notes that the “Darley” dock photos appear to have been taken from glass slides as the writing is reversed on the printed card. She also believes that Arthur Glennie worked at the Newcastle AJS Bank and was a keen cricketer as were most of the Glennie men.
Gionni Di Gravio
University Archivist & Chair, Hunter Living Histories Initiative