The discovery and survival of photographic collection is at times fortuitous and the work of David Knights-Whittome clearly falls into tha category. In around 1978 a collection of around 11,000 glass plate negtives was found in the basement of Linwood Strong’s shop (Optician) on the High Street in Sutton, a town in South London. The plates had been stored there in deteriorating conditions for over 60 years, they were saved and eventually became a part of Sutton Archives, South London, England. They were stored but not made available until 2014 when a preservation and digitisation project commenced. The photographer was little-known David Knights-Whittome and the portraits provide a time capsule of Late Victorian and early Edwardian England.
The collection included images of studio backgrounds, a photograph of David Knights-Whittome standing on a step ladder and posed as if he was painting a backdrop, and a notebook with a sketch for a background that he had drawn as a teenager in the 1890s.
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