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Stereographs Project

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HomeContents > People > Photographers > Richard Beard

Joint: Sharp & Beard 
Includes: Richard Beard Studio 
Dates:  1802 - 1885
Born:  Great Britain, London
Died:  Great Britain, London
Active:  UK
The first British portrait photographer obtaining a license from Daguerre in 1841 for 150 pounds. He established his studio on the roof of the Polytechnic Institution in Regent Street, London and hired staff to take and process the portraits.
The original Daguerreotypes by Richard Beard on which the woodcuts for Henry Mayhew, London Labour and the London Poor (London: Charles Griffin, and Company, 1861) have not been located. In a posting to the Yahoo Photo-History group (11 March 2012) Roger Taylor wrote that the original woodblocks may be in the St Bride Library, Bride Lane, Fleet Street, London EC4Y 8EE, Tel: 020 7353 4660. Further details requested.
He wrote a letter on 17th April 1848 to the National Gallery in London asking permission to make daguerreotype copies of pictures in the gallery (National Gallery, Archive: NG5/72/3) 
Stereographs project 
Business locations 
London, England, UK 
*"By..."; "Mr. Beard's Stereoscopic Daguerreotypes"; 309 Regent St., 42-49; 85 King William St., Millman Mews, New Millman St., 49-53; Royal Polytechnic Inst., Regent St., 52-54; 31 King William St., 55-57; Views rare, made early stereo dags., 3 seen. Also had branch at Liverpool; in partnership with Sharp, location unknown, at some point. Patented process of tinting photos, 42. B. Devon 01; D. 85. 
T.K. Treadwell & William C. Darrah (Compiled by), Wolfgang, Sell (Updated by), 11/28/2003, Photographers of the World (Non-USA), (National Stereoscopic Association)
Credit: National Stereoscopic Association with corrections and additions by Alan Griffiths and others.
NOTE: You are probably here because you have a stereograph to identify. Please email good quality copies of the front and back to so we can create reference collections for all.

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Further research

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Beard Studio
Portrait of Richard Beard 
1860 (ca)
Family history 
If you are related to this photographer and interested in tracking down your extended family we can place a note here for you to help. It is free and you would be amazed who gets in touch.

Exhibitions on this website

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Visual indexes

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Internet biographies

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Wikipedia has a biography of this photographer. Go to website
Getty Research, Los Angeles, USA has an ULAN (Union List of Artists Names Online) entry for this photographer. This is useful for checking names and they frequently provide a brief biography. Go to website

Printed biographies

The following books are useful starting points to obtain brief biographies but they are not substitutes for the monographs on individual photographers.

• Auer, Michele & Michel 1985 Encyclopedie Internationale Des Photographes de 1839 a Nos Jours / Photographers Encylopaedia International 1839 to the present (Hermance, Editions Camera Obscura) 2 volumes [A classic reference work for biographical information on photographers.] 
• Capa, Cornell (ed.) 1984 The International Center of Photography: Encyclopedia of Photography (New York, Crown Publishers, Inc. - A Pound Press Book) p.58 

Useful printed stuff

If there is an analysis of a single photograph or a useful self portrait I will highlight it here.

• Naef, Weston 1995 The J. Paul Getty Museum - Handbook of the Photographic Collection (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum) p.38 
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