I have just started out collecting 19th century photographs though I have been looking at them for the past 4 years now. Why collect photographs and not something else?
Firstly, it is within my financial means. I can spend a few hundreds on a really nice albumen print (I'll just forgo that Paul Smith printed canvas bag or pair of G-Star jeans). Secondly, it is a subject that I have some knowledge about though there is still lots more to learn and know. And lastly, my unit trusts have not been doing too well lately. Rather than banking on (no pun intended) the financial expertise of someone else, I might as well depend on my eye for aesthetics.
I'm focusing on 19th c. japanese portraiture and se asian topography.
Photographers whose work I own now include (list will be updated progressively):
(born 1856; date of death unknown) was a Japanese photographer. In 1874 he opened a photographic studio in Asakusa, Tokyo and subsequently moved to Yokohama in 1883, opening his most successful studio. He was an originator of the Yokohama shashin photographic scene. His studio was still operating in 1909.
Woodbury & Page
Walter Woodbury (1834-1885) was an apprentice in a patent office in Manchester from 1849 to 1851. He went to the Australian gold fields in 1852. Woodbury took up professional photography (he invented the 'Woodburytype' process) and emigrated with James Page to Java in 1858. They established the firm of Woodbury and Page in Batavia. Woodbury returned to England in 1863, but the firm continued trading until the end of the century.