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HomeContents > People > Photographers > John Moyer Heathcote Sr.

Dates:  1800 - 1892
Active:  UK

Preparing biographies

Approved biography for John Moyer Heathcote Sr.
Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, USA)

Heathcote had a son of the same name who became the finest tennis player of his generation. The son (1834-1912) was a man of many interests and an amateur artist, so it is tempting to think that in fact he was the photographer. However, a personal memory by Cuthbert Bede (the pen name of Edward Bradley), whose 1855 Photographic Pleasures was a critical if amusing record of the period, makes it clear that the older Heathcote was the photographer with whom he worked. Heathcote, of Conington Castle, Norfolk, was a justice of the peace and a watercolor artist as well as both a patron and an amateur pupil of the English landscape painter Peter De Wint. He worked extensively in the waxed-paper process, and many of his negatives survive and are annotated. Heathcote was an antiquarian who used photography to document architecture and scenes; one important album is his 1853 “Anglia Illustrata.” Although his features cannot be made out, Heathcote is pictured in a dynamic pose in Bede’s humorous cartoon, “The Present ‘Attitude’ of Photography,” first published in Punch and later in Photographic Pleasures
Roger Taylor & Larry J. Schaaf Impressed by Light: British Photographs from Paper Negatives, 1840-1860 (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2007) 
This biography is courtesy and copyright of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and is included here with permission. 
Date last updated: 4 Nov 2012. 
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