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Derbyshire Photographers' Profiles
by Brett Payne, of Tauranga, New Zealand
John S. Mayle & Sons

of Derby




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John S. Mayle was born in Bedford c. 1840, son of James Langley Mayle (1808-1884) and his wife Emma.  As a young man he worked as a watchmaker. In 1863, John Mayle married Mary Jane Parry from Liverpool. They lived in West Derby from 1864 until 1872, where John worked as a "photographic artist," before moving to Derby in the mid- to late 1870s.

According to Craven (1993) and Adamson (1997), John Mayle worked as a photographer in Derby as early as 1878.  He first appears in the Derby electoral registers compiled on 1 Oct 1877, resident in Parliament street (no number mentioned).  Two years later, the entry for 31 Oct 1879 shows him living at 133 Parliament street.  An 1881 trade directory shows him living at 133 Parliament St, Derby St Werburgh by late 1880, but he described himself as a artist (Kelly) and portrait painter (Census).  By 1887, however, Kelly shows him with a photographic studio at 132 Parliament Street - probably a mistake, as the 31 Oct 1886 electoral register shows "133".  In about 1887 he moved both his residence and the studio to 124 Parliament Street, and the next electoral register, dated 1 Jan 1888, shows him at that address.  A few years later moved once again to 22 Leicester Street (Kelly & Bulmer, 1895).  However, Kelly's 1899 trade directory shows him once again at 124 Parliament street, as does the 1901 Census, and electoral registers demonstrate that his residence remained at number 124 until at least 1900.

John's two sons Samuel Bolton Mayle (born 1866, Liverpool) and Frederick Percy Mayle (born 1869, Liverpool) were listed as photographers in both the 1891 and 1901 censuses.  The firm was going as J. Mayle & Sons until at least 1908.  John's brother Thomas Langley Mayle (b. 1847) also worked as a photographer, but possibly only as an employee, and probably never in Derby.


Portfolio
Image © & courtesy of Samantha Smith "Maud & Willy",
by J. Mayle & Sons, of 133 Parliament Street, Derby,
Undated, but probably c. 1888
Format: Carte de Visite

Image © & courtesy of Samantha Smith

The reverse of this photo is inscribed "Maud 12" and "Willy 10".  These are possibly Maude Eliza Godfrey (born at Derby in 1877) and William Dallison Godfrey (born at Bolton, Lancashire in 1878 - registered Mar Qtr).

Image © & courtesy of Samantha Smith

Image © & courtesy of Elizabeth Gelhard Unidentified man
by J. Mayle & Sons, of 133 Parliament Street, Derby,
Undated, but probably taken in the late 1880s
Format: Carte de Visite
Size: Mount 65 x 102 mm

Image © & courtesy of Elizabeth Gelhard

Notes:  Inscribed on the reverse, "To Mrs. Gibbs from GW [or GM?]."
Image © & courtesy of Elizabeth Gelhard

Reverse of photo by J. Mayle & Sons, of 124 Parliament Street, Derby,
Undated, but between 1887-1894

Format: Carte de Visite

Image © & courtesy of Christine Hibbert

John Mayle only moved his studio to 124 Parliament Street after 1887 (Kelly), and was still at that address in April 1891 (Census).  By the time that both the Kelly's and Bulmer's directories for 1895 were compiled, had shifted again, to 22 Leicester Street.  The photo obviously dates from a time after he had brought both of his sons into the business.

Image © & courtesy of Christine Hibbert

Image © & courtesy of Kevin Rhodes Possibly Lucy Saddington
by J. Mayle & Sons, of 124 Parliament Street, Derby,
Undated, but probably taken around 1900-1905
Format: Cabinet card
Size: 108 x 165 mm

Image © & courtesy of Kevin Rhodes

Notes

Image © & courtesy of Kevin Rhodes
Image © & courtesy of Kevin Rhodes Possibly a young woman dressed in a soldier's uniform
by J. Mayle & Sons, of 124 Parliament Street, Derby,
Undated, but probably taken around 1900-1905
Format: Cabinet card
Size: 108 x 160 mm

Image © & courtesy of Kevin Rhodes

Notes by KR:  Census records of the family only show three sisters in the family, and the two people in these pictures have hands and fingers that are identical.  This leads me to think they both are of Lucy Saddington, of whom I have later studio photos.  Also of two sisters Mary is older and Jane had straight hair.

Image © & courtesy of Kevin Rhodes

References
Images kindly provided by Elizabeth Gelhard, Kevin Rhodes, Samantha Smith & Christine Hibbert
1841-1901 UK Census - online from Ancestry.com
FreeBMD
Wright C.N. (1874) Directory of South Derbyshire, Third Edition, October 1874, Derby.
Anon (1881) Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire, Kelly & Co., London.
Anon (1887) Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire, Kelly & Co., London.
Anon (1891) Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland & Nottinghamshire, Kelly & Co., London. University of Leicester's Digital Library of Historical Directories
Anon (1895) Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire, Kelly & Co. Limited, London.
Anon (1895) History, Topography, and Directory of Derbyshire, T. Bulmer & Co. - by kind courtesy of Sonia Addis-Smith
Anon (1899) Kelly's Directory of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Rutland & Nottinghamshire, Kelly & Co., London. University of Leicester's Digital Library of Historical Directories
Craven, Maxwell (ed.) (1993) Keene's Derby, Breedon Books, Derby, pp. 200-202. - by kind courtesy of Sonia Addis-Smith

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