# 36955


A pair of husband and wife carte de visite portraits housed in a double union case. Launceston, Tasmania, late 1860s.

$500.00 AUD

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Two albumen print photographs, carte de visite format, mounts trimmed to 75 x 60 mm (approx.), both with the identical back mark of Webb & Son, St. John Street, Launceston, Tasmania, mounted under glass in their original oval-shaped brass mats within octagonal gilt brass foil preservers (spots of verdigris to the mats, otherwise both in fine condition), and housed in the original octagonal wood-based thermoplastic union case with double hinge, manufactured by S. Peck & Co., 85 x 95 x 25 mm (small chip at one corner, otherwise fine). Note: the preservers can be gently removed from the case, exposing the backs of the cartes de visite.

For an Australian studio of the second half of the 1860s this is a highly uncommon example of a union case being used to house inexpensive paper prints; in this period, cases would have been used almost exclusively for ambrotypes.

We are confident that this pair of carte de visite portraits of an unidentified Launceston couple have been enclosed within their preservers in this double union case since around the time they were taken in T. D. Webb & Son’s studio over 150 years ago. The foil on the backs has clearly been pressed flat for all that time, so there is no question that the cartes are later “ring-ins”: they are integral to the case.