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PHOTOS OF HOUGHTONIANS

Many of these photos were taken by Christopher Plews, who lived at Coulsons Houses, Houghton-le-Spring, with his wife and children in 1881. He was born in 1850 at Castle Bolton, Yorkshire, and had a successful photography business in Houghton. A directory lists him as living at Stocksfield Place, but by 1891 the census tells us that he had moved to Sunderland Street, and that he had a fifteen year old son, also named Christopher, who had been born in Greenville, America. A directory from 1914 lists a Christopher Plews as assistant overseer and collector of rates to Houghton Urban District Council, 49 Ironside Street.

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A smart gentleman sitting for Christopher Plews. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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This Carte de Visite, or CDV, is one of the many images from the studio of C.Plews, in the late 1800s. CDVs were popular between 1860 and 1895.

The young lady featured is unidentified.

The reverse of each photo stated: Photographed by C.Plews, Sunderland Street, Houghton-le-Spring. Negatives kept. Copies may be had or enlarged to life size in watercolour or oil. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

I purchased this in the USA... did the lady have connections with America?

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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Another of C.Plews' photographs of unidentified sitters. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

I purchased this photograph in the USA... did the family have connections with America?

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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A very rare photograph from the studio of C.Plews, late 1800s, showing an unidentified black gentleman.

Historically there has been an absence of ethnic minorities in Houghton, and this gentleman would have been conspicuous in the town when making his way up Sunderland Street to C.Plew's studio. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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Another photograph from the studio of C.Plews, in the late 1800s. The baby's name is not known.

C.Plews Photography, Sunderland StreetC.Plews Photography, Sunderland Street
Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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It would appear that Chris Plews' subjects were not just limited to his Sunderland Street studio, as this photo of a horse and trap shows.

Can you identify the location? Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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These are Jim Moran's Great-Great-Grandparents and their 12 children, including his Great-Grandmother, taken at the turn of the century. Despite appearances, they weren't wealthy. Most of the lads worked down Houghton pit.

View the originals on Flickr by clicking HERE. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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Lena Davison nee Brunskill with her cat on Lumley Street, Grasswell, Houghton-le-Spring. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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Audrey and young Cliff Brown (right pair) at the Outram Street Coronation Party in 1953. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

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Mr Edgar George Liddell outside of his saddler shop, 25 Sunderland Street, circa 1910. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

Photos collected by Paul Lanagan, local historian
www.houghtonlespring.org.uk

 

If you have memories or photographs which you would like to share, please get in touch.

 

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

:: Thanks to everyone who shared photographs, including: Jim Moran for sharing his fabulous Flickr photographs of the Purvis family; Paul Frecker for sharing the C.Plews photograph of the unidentified black gentleman; Wendy Usher; and Cliff Brown. Copyright © Books of the North 2000 - 2011.

 

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www.houghtonlespring.org.uk

PAGE UPDATED: 03/04/2011
Houghton-le-Spring in Old Picture Postcards
Old photos of Houghton-le-Spring
Houghton Heritage
History of Houghton
Photos of Houghton folk
CDV stands for Carte de Visite or "calling card", the small cards popular from 1860 to the late 1800s
Old photos of people and places in Houghton Le Spring In Kelly's Directory Durham 1890 Houghton le Spring Plews Chris, Photograper, Stockfield Pl, On the 1901 Census Admin county: Durham Civil Parish: Houghton le Spring Christopher Plews age: 51 b:Yorks Castle Bolton Occupation: Postmaster Photographer
Christopher Plews on the 1891 Census at Sunderland Street, Houghton le Spring, Durham. Christopher Plews 41 married Photographer born Castle Bolton Yorks with wife Elizabeth and children One son Christopher born in Greenvile America he aged 15 in 1891. 1881 Census Christopher Plews living at Coulsons Houses, Houghton le Spring, Durham with wife and children.