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Book Description
Album of photographs taken by an English settler in the British Colony of Natal, South Africa. Contains 24 photographs neatly ensconced behind window mounts recto and verso onto 12 thick cardstock leaves captioned in manuscript. Photographs measure approximately 15 x 11 cm. Oblong 8vo. album measuring approximately 25 x 19 x 3,5 cm, brown cloth boards. Volume reinforced at spine and hinge, age-toning throughout though mainly to album leaves, otherwise in Very Good Condition, exceedingly scarce photographs of colonial Durban.
Dealer Notes
Durban history which helps to date the photographs: The first mail train was introduced in 1883; some rail tracks are seen. In 1893 rickshaws were introduced; there are only two see in street scenes here, and the first photo of the album seems to highlight it. Electric lighting generated by gas engines was introduced in Durban in 1897, Pietermaritzburg in 1898; a tall electric light is seen in front of the Durban City Hall. The establishment of Durban's Zoological Gardens, Mitchell Park Zoo and Robert Jameson Park took place in the early 1900s, and the arrival of five Mauritian deer donated by Clara Binns, née Acutt, in 1900 saw the beginnings of Mitchell Park Zoo; there is one image taken at the Zoological gardens. And finally, the arrival of electric tram was in 1902; there is no sight of these in the city street views. Therefore, the photos were taken between 1900/1901.
A well rounded primary source visual chronical of life in the colonial era of Durban and Pietermaritzburg in its early phases, showing the integration of European influence with glimpses of indigenous custom.
Author English Settler
Date 1900-1901
Condition Volume reinforced at spine and hinge, age-toning throughout though mainly to album leaves, otherwise in Very Good Condition

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