CHINA Peking, Fuchow, Ningpo and Chefoo, 1860s-1878
Lot 16
CHINA Peking, Fuchow, Ningpo and Chefoo, 1860s-1878
Sold for £11,040 (US$ 18,537) inc. premium
Lot Details
Peking, Fuchow, Ningpo and Chefoo, 1860s-1878
A pair of photograph albums, each stitched in the Chinese manner within limp silk wrappers, one with a label with a calligraphic title in Chinese, containing approximately 109 albumen prints relating to Peking, Fuchow and Ningpo, and to British, French (and possibly some Americans), in Consular or Customs Service postings at Chefoo, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Peking, Amoy, Fuchow and Ningpo, the images well-captioned in a contemporary hand, many also titled in Chinese, the first volume with label reading 'Pictorial Diary' in Chinese, a manuscript race meeting announcement featuring mounted jockeys loosely inserted, bound in blue and green silk wrappers respectively, 4to and oblong folio
various sizes


  • The albums have the appearance of being complied by a British consular official, or the wife of one, and comprise:

    I. Wanchunyuan [the Garden of Eternal Spring] (4 including the the 17-arch bridge); Yuanmingyuan [the Garden of Perfection and Brightness] (10 including a bronze lion with Chinese figure, and the Marble bridge with a single figure at the apex and a group of Chinese on the near side); Trees and shrubs in one of the courts of the Wofosi [Temple of the Reclining Buddha]; Beijing and environs (approximately 20 including Peking Observatory with reclining European in foreground, group titled ''Students in H.B.M. Legation, Peking, 1868 (all identified), ''Temple at Peking where Sir Harry Parkes was imprisoned'', French Legation (several); Nanchow Pass (2); Tientsin (2); carte de visite portraits of Mrs. Ross Browne, Lady Alcock, Frank Woodruff, large full-length of Monseigneur Moulin of Peking (d.1868) in full robe, and several others identified by cut signatures attached (mostly French Legation?).

    II. Fuchow and environs (13 including the British Consulate, 1876 where dated); Ningpo (7 including the Chinese Writer in the British Consulate at Ningpo, most 1870 where dated; approximately 35 carte de visite portraits, the majority being Britons (or their ladies) in British consular or Chinese Customs Service, almost all identified and mostly with places and dates including Sir Walter Medhurst (1822-85), Consul-General at Shanghai and others at Shanghai (1870 and later), Ningpo (1870), Chefoo (1871-73), Amoy (1875), Hong Kong (1875), Fuchow (1876).

    A possible clue to the compiler of these albums (in addition to postings that might be inferred from the dates and places in the album), lies in the 1868 photograph (first volume) of the Student Interpreters in the British Legation at Peking. Half of these can be easily identified, one with an entry in DNB. Augustus Raymond Margary (1846-75) found doubtful fame by being treacherously murdered on the Burmese-Chinese frontier, providing a pretext for Wade's negotiations that resulted in the Chefoo Convention. Other Student Interpreters were: Walter Caine Hillier (1849-1927, latterly Consul-Genral in Korea and professor of Chinese at King's College London); Pelham Laird Warren (1845-1923, latterly Consul-General at Shanghai); Benjamin Charles Georege Scott (1846-1929, latterly Consul-General at Canton); William Richard Carles (1846-1929, latterly Consul-General at Tientsin and Peking); C.W. Everard; E. McKea; H. Bristow; C. Andrews and C.M. Ford.