Some of the earliest portrait photos are pretty stunning and can be seen here:
My tree has some early one’s, but none so grand. For this week’s blog, I thought I would look at all the photo’s I have for ancestors born before 1850.
The photo’s themselves would have been taken much later, as most of the pics I have of these ancestors are when they are much older, up to the early 1900’s. I have some portraits of earlier ancestors from the 1700’s, but these are paintings not photos. Obviously this is quite biased, and I only have these for ancestors or family connections that were reasonably wealthy or famous. None of my ancestors that were ordinary agricultural labourers or tradespeople had this luxury.
The earliest portraits I have is of the Blaxland family. My great grandaunt, Anne Kent (1806 – 1835) from Lincoln, married Mark Blaxland in 1833. He was Lieutenant-Colonel of the Madras Army in India. I just have a silhouette portrait of her, as she died in 1835 at the age of 28. I assume that she died in childbirth, as I found her burial record one week after the birth of her daughter, Anne Blaxland in May 1835.
Her husband, Mark Blaxland was the son of Christopher Blaxland & Sally Cuffley. Christopher was an apothecary / surgeon in London, and the brother of Gregory & John Blaxland who emigrated to Australia in 1805. Gregory Blaxland was part of the expedition with William Lawson and William Wentworth to explore a route from Sydney over the Blue Mountains.
Kents & Rudgards
Anne Kent’s brother was my great grandfather George Davies Kent, who married Anne Rudgard. I have photos of both of them, which were probably taken around the 1860’s or 70’s (based on their ages at the time. I also have a photograph of Anne Rudgard, my great grandmother with her 7 children. No such thing as happy smiley photos in those days.
Anne Rudgard’s father and uncle were both Mayors of Lincoln, thus on a recent trip I was able to photograph their portraits at the Lincoln Guildhall.
William Rudgard (1800-1875) was my 2x great grandfather. He was a corn & hops merchant & brewer, became mayor of Lincoln in 1839, and a magistrate in 1851. and leader of the Whig party in Lincoln.
My next batch of photos of relatives born before 1850 come from the Wall family, ancestors of my mother’s first husband Dudley Charles Wall, from an old family bible passed down to my brother. These are interesting as they cover Charles Dudley Wall (1800-1866) from Greenwich in England, and his children
James Edward Wall (1839-1905) who emigrated to South Africa, William Wall (1842-1885) and Frank Wall (1848-1917) who emigrated to New Zealand, and 3 of his other children who remained in England (Fanny, Charles & Robert Wall).
My final batch of old photographs were kindly shared by my genealogist friend and cousin, the late Vicky Doody who did extensive research on her Stevens family who originated from Essex in England. A similar story to the Walls, where I have a photo of my 3x great grandparents, Philip Stevens and Elizabeth Reynolds. His children spread emigrated to the colonies and America, giving rise to large Stevens clans in the USA (John Stevens 1828-1889) and William Temple Stevens (1833-1926), Australia (Philip Reynolds Stevens 1827-1914), South Africa (Henry Williams Stevens 1830-1880, my 2x great grandfather).