PORTRAIT OF A FASHIONABLE GENTLEMAN IN THE RESORT TOWN OF TORQUAY, ENGLAND

This cabinet card features a fashionable clean-cut gentleman posing for a studio portrait. His nice clothing indicates that he was a well-to-do man. Perhaps he was on vacation at the time of this photograph. He was photographed by James C. Dinham who operated the Gainsboroough Gallery in Torquay, England. Torquay is a seaside resort town located on the English Channel in southwest England. This gentleman may have been staying at one of the local resorts. A photograph of Dinham’s studio can be seen below. The photograph was taken in 1918 and the gallery is decorated for Armistice Day. The image and further information can be found at the Devon Heritage Site on the internet. Dinham established his business in the 1890’s. He had a very distinguished clientele but his gallery bordered a very poor area of the city. The residents lived in “ancient tenements” and were poor and lived in squalor. Dinham visited this neighborhood and took many photographs of colorful characters and street scenes. He gave these photos catchy titles but in truth, Dinham was engaging  in photo journalism. He was one of the pioneers in this field of photography. In researching Mr. Dinham, it was found that he began his studio 1881. The source reports that the gallery closed in about 1910 only to become “Dinham & Sons” which operated from 1910 until about 1939. Research also found that Dinham was cited in “Photography” (1898) for photographing the Duke of York during one of the Duke’s visits to Torbay (the Borough which includes Torquay).

 

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Published in: on September 8, 2017 at 2:05 pm  Comments (1)  
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  1. Gosh … he looks like an early trial version of George Sanders (who had great ‘highs’ but whose ‘lows’ I wouldn’t wish on anyone). I hope this fellow lived up to his dapper looks. So much of the magic of these old portraits is in wondering about the subject and how they fared. Thanks for sharing.


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