Here’s another photograph featuring photographer John Capewell, his wife Ella, and what I am assuming were either his or her relatives. I don’t know who these people are, but there are a few faces that look familiar from some of the other photos in the collection.
John is standing on the right with his wife seated in front of him. There’s a baby on her lap who I am assuming is John, Jr.
John is triggering his camera with a length of string which is snaking between his wife’s feet.
The lodgepole furniture is back for this photo. Capewell had a number of his photographic subjects seated upon this handmade lawn furniture. I’m wondering if it’s Capewell’s yard. If it is, than this was shot in Westville, New Jersey very early in the twentieth century.
The Capewell Glass Negative Collection is a series of about 200 5-inch by 7-inch glass negatives shot early in the 20th Century by John Batt Capewell (1878-1951) of Westville, New Jersey. John passed the negatives down to his son Henry who left them in his wife’s possession upon his passing. Henry’s widow didn’t know what to do with them and didn’t particularly want them so she offered them to my Dad who couldn’t turn down anything. Ultimately I wound up with them and thought I would one day have photographic prints struck from them. That didn’t happen, but I came up with the digital workaround of placing the negatives on a lightbox and rephotographing them with a digital camera. The “processing” was then done on a computer with image editing software. They came out better than I thought they would so I thought I would show them off to the world on this site. Many of these pictures have not been seen in a century, and I’m proud to be presenting them today.
At first, I did not know who the people were in the photographs. I have a box of ephemera that accompanied the negatives and snagged a few clues from that as far as the Capewell name. I did some research on the internet and had a few false starts and wrong turns, but the readers of these posts have provided a remarkable amount of research and detail. I’m amazed at what people have turned up sifting through public records and such!
Last Week: Couple in the Garden