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LLANDUDNO AS IT WAS, A BRIEF REVIEW OF THE HISTORY OF LLANDUDNO. Perhaps I may be allowed at this junc- ture to record a. few facets regarding the L Li I establishment of photographic studios in r cl Llandudno. My readers need; not. be re- minded that the art. of photography was discovered during the. first half of the last century, and during the second half the art has much advanced in effectiveness and durability. The older members of the community will remember that at first the, portrait was taken on glass in a crampy manner, then the whole was en- 1 closed in a. metal or composition case or frame. In the year 1859, fifty years ago this year, a substantial addition was made to the art of photography in Ldan- dudno, owing to the advent of the late Mr Thomas Edge to the town. Prior to this date Mr Edge was well acquainted with the locality, during that time he was em- ployed by the London Stereoscopic Com- pany, taking views in England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales, chiefly for American firms. The possibilities of Llandudno- made such an impression upon him that. when the war broke out between North and South in America., and terminated the demand for stereoscopic views, Mr Edge opened a studio at Preston, and a branch during the summer months in Llanclucliao. 'On. first arrival Mr Edge lived at "West Etacl," Church Walks, directly opposite the, National School, and later at No. 1, Bright Terrace, Lloyd Street. This terrac,e was called after John Bright, who used to stay in apart- ments next- door for several seasons, to- gether with his family. Mr Eiclige's first- studio was situated on the ground which is now occuped by the present one in Gloddaeth Street, which is the oldest established in our town. He was a master hand in his own profession, and besides he was an expert with his brush as well; owing to these faots his reputation was very widely known. Many'eminent and celebrated persons from time to time paid a visit to his studio, and it would not only be most interesting, but also a rare treat to view his negatives which have been kept during such an extended period. Mr T. Edge wa,s the first in Europe to introduce theAmerican principle of en- larging photographs by electric light. It may 'be mentioned that the majority- of his customers were from the Continent, He was always in the van in introducing any new appliances and any process cal- culated to improve the art of photo- graphy, which he invariahlyexecuted in the best possible style. In early life Mr Edge has been a sailor and knew the coasts of North Wales, and Lancashire well; he was also well acquainted with parts of the Continental Coasts. When he first came to our town the train from the Junction was propelled by horse- power, the late Mr Payne, of the Ox- ford Arms, being the proprietor of the horses, and was the driver. Mil" Edge was a man of strong convitction, and was also a possessor of a high moral and Christian character, therefore his -sterling qualities in those several aspects, which he on many occasions allowed to be pub- licly exercised, were greatly appreciated by the community. He was a very active member of the School Board for many years. Always ready .and willing to propagate the charms, the natural 7 S beauty and the attractions of his adopted town, he lived to see Llandudno develop from a mere village into. a fair sized town. It is likely that the first photographic studio in our town stoocl on the site of Corwen House, Upper Mostyn Street. The artists were Messrs. Hogarth and Hobies; it would be about 1856. We possess some specimen of their work, and have; seen others; of course the photos were on glass. Another early comer to Llandudno was the late Mr L. S. Oor,onahy; he was a real artist, and a painter of no mean order. He arrived about the year 1856, and brought with him a large van. It would be about 20ft. long, and fixed on four small wheels; Mr Cornaiby travelled with it from England. This van was first placed in a position on the land now occupied by the Carlton Buffet. In a few years this land was required for 'building purposes, and he was compelled to move on once more. Six horses were attached, and with converted effort the van wa,s drawn along- into the Happy Valley, and was a fixture on t'he town side of the fountain, together with some additions for many years. In those days the, slope of the Happy Valley was used as an archery .ground, which was extremely popular with the visitors. It being a naturally beautiful spot and the resort of a good class of visitors, Mr Cornaby reaped a bountiful harvest every season for an age or 'longer. Mr Cornaby was one of. the pioneers of the English Wesleyan cause, n and his seif-dseniai and zeal in this matter is worthy of all praise and recording to posterity. Another early photo establishment was that of Mr Vickers, which stood on the east stele of "Stowe," Church Walks; it was .carried on for some years. The other early studio was situated in Mostyn Street, about the site of Mr R Conway's establishment; it was called in thofse times Llysmadoc field, the pro- prietor'being Mr-Ei. J. Eyres; this also survived for years. Mr H. Kennerle y wa,s another artist who we beflieve came to Llandudno in the sixties, and buJIt. a studio in Mr Hugh Priblhard's garden, Tygwyn Road, the iste, of Mr F. Eicl'ge's residence. He was a really keen artist, and was noted for many years for his excellent work. His health failed, and on medical advice he resided in North Africa, where he died some yearisi ago. Mr Oglesby arrived in Lil:andudno later and opened a studio at Lansdowne House, the house now occupied by Messrs. Newman in Mosityn Street. He was an arti)st of no mean order, and car- J ried on a. substantial trade for many years. Still later Mr A. Ford. Smith opened a studio in Bank Buildings in the house and shop now in the occupation of Mr Ben Jones, draper, Mostyn .Street.. The name, Bank Buildings, was given to this row of houses becalisei it was here the first bank was opened in Llandudno, the Natonafi Provincial. It was soon moved to a more popular district at that time, viz., Bella Vista, Church Walks. Mr Smith stayed in the town for years, and was well patronized. Mr J. M. Young came to Llandudno as an assistant to Mr T. Edge, with whom he stayed for a, period. He, however, married Miss Tomkinson and opened a studio -on his own account. It was Mr Young who built the fine premises now in the possession of the Liberal Club. He was an. excellent artist, and his establish- ment attracted customers from the ranks of both residents and visitors.



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