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EdinPhoto - Home Page      Please send me an e-mail ...  with your questions, comments, suggestions or news.      At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.            At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.

Photographs and Other Images  -  These include portraits of photographers  -  photographic outings -  Princes Street views  -  Newhaven Fishwives  -  etc.  Early Photography in Edinburgh  -  Talbot, Brewster, Hill & Adamson, Early Professional Photographers in Princes Street, etc.  Professional Photographers in Edinburgh  -  1840 to 1940  -  Their names, dates of business and studio addresses.  The Photographic Society of Scotland  -  1856 to 1873  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, etc.  The History of Edinburgh Photographic Society  -  1861 to date  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, Poems, etc.  EPS Publications - EPS Handwritten Records  -  Photographic Journals  -  Trade Directories  -  Books  -  etc.  Thanks to all who have encouraged and supported me in creating the EdinPhoto web site  -  including descendants of photogrpahers  -  researchers  -  providers of photographs and other material  Background notes on the research thal led up to the creation of this site  -   together with lists of new material added to the site since its launch.  Brief comments on how this site might be used  -  Just browsing?  -  Seeking specific information?  Please add your questions, suggestions or other comments to the Guest Book.  Links to other web sites  -  Photographic Societies  -  Photographic History  -  Family History  -  etc.  Click here to find the link to the Edinburgh Photogrpahic Society web site.  Details of who owns the copyright of photographs and other mateiral on this web site.

A selection of my photographs, many from Edinburgh throughout the year.   Also photos from Scotland, London, Iceland, Italy, Hong Kong and elsewhere    Many old maps of Edinburgh (Old Town, New Town, while City), Leith and Newhaven.  Includes several old transport maps and a comparison of old maps with recent aerial photos.   Old engravings, mailly of Edinburgh scenes.  Some from the 1820s, some from the 1890s,  some others - includes many hand-coloured examples from the 1820s.   News from Edinburgh today  -  Events, Collections, Buildings and Gardens, Transport   This site includes     1. Post card portraits taken in studios in Edinburgh:    2. Post card views either takeen/published by Ediburgh photographers or views of Edinburgh, or both.y Edinburgh    Views of Edinburgh, grouped into three sections:     1. Street views:    2. Buildings:    3. Around Edinburgh   Views of transport around Edinburgh  -  Horse drawn trams and buses, cable cars, electric trams, buses and a few railway photos.  Also several maps of Edinburgh's bus and tram routes.   Summary of the updates added to this site each month since the site was launched   Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Early Photography

Prices Charged

Please click on one of the links below, or scroll down this page.

1.

Old Money and New Money

2.

Inflation  -  Conversion Table

3.

Studio Portraits  -  1849 to 1867

and a note on some of the other businesses of photographers in late C19.

4.

Cartes de Visite

5.

Gem Photographs

6.

Enlargements  -  from 1875

7.

Materials and Processing  -  1959

and a note comparing the sizes of plates, negatives and papers

8.

Cameras

and a link to a web site that gives the price of Kodak cameras since 1888.

 

1.

'Old Money and New Money'

1971

In 1971, Britain converted to decimal currency  p (pounds, new pence)

Previously, the currency had been  s d  (pounds, shillings, pence).

s d is the currency quoted throughout the tables on this page.

Conversion Rates

Here are decimal equivalents of the 'old money':

     6d. (sixpence) = 0.025

1s. 0d.   or   1/-   (a shilling)  =  0.05 or 5p

2s. 6d    or   2/6  (half a crown) = 0.125 or 12.5p

1  1s. 0d.   or 1 1/-   (one guinea) = 1.05  or 1 and 5

2.

Inflation  -  Conversion Table

Equivalent Values Today -  Feb 2007

 of some of the prices charged in earlier years:

Year

Sixpence

6d

Shilling

1s 0d

Pound

1

1840

1.84

3.67

73

1850

2.43

4.86

97

1860

2.18

4.35

87

1870

2.15

4.29

86

1880

1.98

3.96

79

1890

2.32

4.63

93

1900

2.20

4.41

88

1910

2.12

4.24

85

1920

0.79

1.58

32

1930

1.16

2.32

46

1940

99p

1.98

40

1950

62p

1.24

25

1960

42p

85p

17

1970

28p

55p

11

1980

8p

15p

3.05

1990

4p

8p

1.58

2000

3p

6p

1.24

Sources used to compile the table above:  Safaira's Web site (1840-2003) + UK RPI (2003-2007)

 

3.

Studio Portraits  -  From 1849

Some of the early press adverts for photographic studios in Edinburgh give the prices charged for studio portraits..   Here are a few  examples.

1849

James Howie

First size

 1s. 6d

Equivalent to over 7  today.

See table above.

Second size

 2s. 6d

Third size

 4s. 0d

Fourth size

 7s. 6d

Sotires Georgiades

Smallest size

 5s 6d

middle size

8s 6d

largest size

15s. 6d

Family Groups

higher prices

1854

James Howie

First size

 3s. 6d

Second size

 6s 0d

Third size

10s 0d

1855

James Howie

Prices  from ...

 1s 0d

Handsome Portrait in Morocco Case

 3s 6d

John Moffat

Prices  from ...

2s. 6d

1856

Truefitt Brothers

Prices  from ....

2s. 6d

1857

G & D Hay

Prices  from ...

2s. 6d

1857

J G Tunny

Calotype portraits of civic dignitaries

4s. 6d

Calotype views

5s. 6d

1867

Tunny & Asher

Enamel Cartes-de-Visite

6s. 0d / dozen

The lately fashionable Cabinet Portraits

4s. 0d each

 

Combining Photography and Other Businesses

Late 18th century

The competition between photographers may have made it difficult for some to earn their living entirely from photography.  Many photographers in the early years had previously been artists.  Some continued to paint.

However here are some other occupations of Edinburgh photographers in the late 19th century.

Bagpipes

In Edinburgh, John Center was listed in the trade directories as:

Portrait of John Center, photographer and bagpipe maker, taken in the studio of James Howie, 3 Princes Street, in 1888.

1866 to 1868

'Photographer'

1869 to 1880

'Photographer, Bagpipe and Reed Maker'

1881 to 1908

                             'Bagpipe and Reed Maker'

 

Hairdressing

A little further north in Broughty Ferry, Angus, RTM Allan combined the occupations of Photographer, Perfumer, Hairdresser  and Fancy Goods Importer.

He lists his occupations on the back of his carte de visite, below.  Please click on the images below to enlarge them.

Carte de visite by R T M Allan, Photographer and Hairdresser, Broughty Ferry, Angus, Scotland.       Carte de visite by R T M Allan, Photographer and Hairdresser, Broughty Ferry, Angus, Scotland.

 

4.

Cartes de Visite

The Price of Cartes de Visite

A photographer of high standing might have charged 10s 6d 0.525) for a dozen for cartes de visite.

But some photographers charged only 6d (0.025) per dozen, so bringing photographs within the reach of a far wider audience.

Ref:  Dr Ralph W Rimmer FRPS in an article entitled Poverty: A Subject for Photography:
  The PhotoHistorian, Sep 2003, pp.5-7

Materials for Cartes de Visite

An advert was placed in the British Journal of Photography Almanac in the early 1860s by The London Stereoscopic Co, 55 Cheapside, London.

It offered:

-  Highly albumenised paper (the same as used by the artists of the company):  12s per quire

-  Cards, plain white best quality:  10s per 1,000

-  Ditto with address lithographed on the back:  21s per 1,000 (first 1,000) then 17s per 1,000.

 

5.

Gem Photographs

"J. Austin 'The American Gem Photographer' offered 9 mounted gems for 7d.  His studio was at 13 Grainger St West, Newcastle from 1881-1882 and his mount advertises a branch at 75 Princes St, Edinburgh."

 Marcel Safier, Holland Park, Queensland Australia

 

6.

Enlargements

From 1875

Cheap framed enlargements became popular in the second half of the 1870s.

Photographers, A & G Taylor, quickly set up branches throughout Britain, and started selling packages comprising a framed enlargement and 12 cartes de visite for 30 shillings (=1.50) payable at the rate of one shilling a week.

Some local photographers sold similar packages with varying degrees of success.

Audrey Linkman:  Your Family Tree, November 2006, p.53

 

7.

Materials and Processing

Mid-20th Century

An article in the November 1959 edition of Practical Photography commented on the cost of photographic materials and processing.

By today's standards, the cost of photography in 1959 seems expensive.

The total cost of 27s 10d for a 35mm film in 1959 is equivalent to paying about 50 in 2005.  Average earnings were about 14 10s. per week in 1959 and almost 500 per week in 2005.

Enprints

Enprints were prints made from the whole of the negative without any cropping.  So their size varied according to the type of negative being printed.  Typical sizes for enprints were 5 ins x 3.5 ins, (or 3.5 ins x 3.5 ins for a print from a square negative.)

However in the article from which the costs below are taken, the enprint was described as being a little smaller - 4 ins x 3.125 ins (or 3.125 ins x 3.125 ins from a square negative).  The author commented on the price of 6d. for an enprint:

"It is nevertheless quite a good bargain when you consider that the next size up, which is a postcard, is only about in wider and 1 in. longer, for which you pay at least 9d. and in some shops 1s."

 

1959

Black + White Prints

Film
Size

No. of
Prints

Cost of
Film

Cost of
Development

Cost of
 Enprints

Total
Cost

120 / 620

12 2s. 9d. 1s. 6d. 6s. 0d. 10s. 3d.

35mm

20

5s. 1d.

2s. 6d.

10s. 0d.

17s. 7d.

36

6s. 10d.

3s. 0d.

18s. 0d.

27s. 10d.

 

1959

Colour Transparencies

Film
Size

No. of
Transparencies

Cost of
Film

Cost of
Processing

Total
Cost

120 / 620

12 10s. 8d. 9s. 0d. 19s. 8d.

35mm

20

13s. 4d.

9s. 0d.

22s. 4d.

36

19s. 0d.

15s. 0d.

34s. 0d.

 

Sizes of Plates, Negatives and Papers

A few examples of

Plates, Negatives and Prints

Chart giving a comparison of the sizes of some glass plates, negatives and prints.

8.

Cameras

Stephen McMahon's Grandfather outside an LNER station, probably in the 1930s.  Where is this station     Stephen McMahon's Grandmother outside an LNER station, probably in the 1930s.  Where is this station

After sending me these two photos of his grandfather and grandmother, taken, probably in the 1930s, Steve McMahon added:

More Photos from 1930s

"I also have a few pages of a photograph album that belonged to my  grandmother.  The prints are roughly 3.5" x 2.5"  Judging by the fashions, I would say that the photos were taken some time in the 1930s  (late-1920s perhaps)."

Question

Cameras in the 1930s

"How expensive were cameras in the 1930s?  My grandparents were not well off,  so I reckon it all must have been a luxury to have one's own camera."

Stephen McMahon:  December 10, 2009

Answer

Cameras were not cheap!  In the early-1930s, Kodak were charging 2 10s 0d for their basic model, a No 2 Brownie  That equates to about 350 in 2009, allowing for inflation.

This camera was available in five colours, but look at how basic it was compared to a 350 camera today.

Here is a web site has a list of Kodak cameras since 1888.

For each model, it gives:

-  dates the camera was sold.

-  type of film used.

-  price when new.

The Kodak model sold in 1888 cost 25.  That's equivalent to over 2,000 in 2009.

Peter Stubbs:  December 11, 2009

 

 

Early Photography -  More pages

All Pages       Processes      Types of Photograph       Prices charged       Sizes

 

 

 

Links to Other Pages

EdinPhoto - Home Page      Please send me an e-mail ...  with your questions, comments, suggestions or news.      At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.            At any time, you can search for a word  -  perhaps a photographer's name or a photographic topic.  The search will produce a list of pages on the EdinPhoto web site where this word appears.

Photographs and Other Images  -  These include portraits of photographers  -  photographic outings -  Princes Street views  -  Newhaven Fishwives  -  etc.  Early Photography in Edinburgh  -  Talbot, Brewster, Hill & Adamson, Early Professional Photographers in Princes Street, etc.  Professional Photographers in Edinburgh  -  1840 to 1940  -  Their names, dates of business and studio addresses.  The Photographic Society of Scotland  -  1856 to 1873  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, etc.  The History of Edinburgh Photographic Society  -  1861 to date  -  Lectures, Exhibitions, Outings, Poems, etc.  EPS Publications - EPS Handwritten Records  -  Photographic Journals  -  Trade Directories  -  Books  -  etc.  Thanks to all who have encouraged and supported me in creating the EdinPhoto web site  -  including descendants of photogrpahers  -  researchers  -  providers of photographs and other material  Background notes on the research thal led up to the creation of this site  -   together with lists of new material added to the site since its launch.  Brief comments on how this site might be used  -  Just browsing?  -  Seeking specific information?  Please add your questions, suggestions or other comments to the Guest Book.  Links to other web sites  -  Photographic Societies  -  Photographic History  -  Family History  -  etc.  Click here to find the link to the Edinburgh Photogrpahic Society web site.  Details of who owns the copyright of photographs and other mateiral on this web site.

A selection of my photographs, many from Edinburgh throughout the year.   Also photos from Scotland, London, Iceland, Italy, Hong Kong and elsewhere    Many old maps of Edinburgh (Old Town, New Town, while City), Leith and Newhaven.  Includes several old transport maps and a comparison of old maps with recent aerial photos.   Old engravings, mailly of Edinburgh scenes.  Some from the 1820s, some from the 1890s,  some others - includes many hand-coloured examples from the 1820s.   News from Edinburgh today  -  Events, Collections, Buildings and Gardens, Transport   This site includes     1. Post card portraits taken in studios in Edinburgh:    2. Post card views either takeen/published by Ediburgh photographers or views of Edinburgh, or both.y Edinburgh    Views of Edinburgh, grouped into three sections:     1. Street views:    2. Buildings:    3. Around Edinburgh   Views of transport around Edinburgh  -  Horse drawn trams and buses, cable cars, electric trams, buses and a few railway photos.  Also several maps of Edinburgh's bus and tram routes.   Summary of the updates added to this site each month since the site was launched   Frequently Asked Questions

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