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Edge, John, 1873–1896

Photograph album of Sir John Edge in Allahabad, India.

India, ca. 1888-1894.
Physical Description:
1 album (120 photographs) : albumen prints ; album 32 x 40 cm
Rare Books and Manuscripts
Folio A 2018 17
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund
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Sir John Edge (1841-1926) was Chief Justice of the High Court of North Western Provinces of British India in Allahabad (1886-1898), the first Vice-Chancellor of the University of Allahabad (1887-1893), and a judicial member of the Council of India (1899-1908). “When chief justice of Allahabad he [Edge] was notably hospitable. He was proficient with rod, rifle, and gun, and was a keen alpinist” (Oxford Dictionary of National Biography).
Bound in brown half morocco album with cloth boards and gilt tooled borders on the spine; all edges gilt.
Album with over 120 albumen photographs concerning Sir John Edge, Chief Justice of the High Court in Allahabad (British India). The photographs depict hunting camps in the North-Western Provinces and Kashmir, Agra, Srinagar, Naini Tal Hill Station, Skardu and Sind Valleys, Shigar and Indus Rivers. Also depicted are Edge's family and house in Allahabad; the Viceroy of India, Lieutenant Governor of the North Western Provinces and other British India officials; members of the 60th Volunteer Rifles in Allahabad; and others.
The album gives a picturesque illustration to the life of Edge's family in Allahabad and Himalayan hill stations. Photographs include several group portraits of family and friends in back country hunting camps during the Christmas seasons of 1888, 1889, 1890, and 1891, showing Edge, his daughters and guests posing with hunted tigers, sambar deer, bears, and leopards; mounted on elephants; on a “Lunch in the jungles south west of Saktirgarh"; and others. One photo near the end of the album, taken near Dras, depicts several cows, apparently not hunted (in the 1880s Edge's court presided over a legal case in British India ruling that cow slaughter was not an "offence against religion" under the India Penal Code).
There are also original photos of the Public Works office in Simla, Srinagar and the banks of the Jhelum River, Naini Tal Hill Station showing the results of the landslide in 1880, Baramulla town with the bridge over the Jhelum River, “The Residency” in Kashmir, “C. Spedding's Camp” in the Himalayan foothills, Agra Fort, Taj Mahal, Tomb of I'timad-ud-Daulah or “Baby Taj” in Agra, portraits of local villagers, boatmen, and others. Sixteen views taken during Edge's hiking trips in Baltistan (modern-day Pakistan) show Skardu Valley, Shigar and Indus Rivers, Edge's camps, glaciers, “Pony road on left bank of Indus,” Sind Valley, Zoji La mountain pass, and others. Several group portraits show the officers of the 60th Regiment of Foot, or the King's Royal Rifle Corps, which Edge was in command of in Allahabad, one photo featuring him in the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel. The album also houses a large group portrait of the graduates of the “School of Musketry, Deolali, Second Class, 1894."
The album includes a group portrait of British India officials and upper class residents taken during a ceremony to mark the opening of the Dufferin bridge over the Ganges in Benares in 1888 (modern name: Malviya Bridge, Varanasi). It depicts: Lord Dufferin (Viceroy of British India in 1884-1888), the Maharaja of Benares, Sir Donald Wallace (private secretary to Lord Dufferin in 1886-1889), Sir Thomas Baker (military commander in Bengal in 1887-1890), Sir Auckland Colvin (Lieutenant Governor of Indian North Western Provinces in 1887-1892) with his wife and daughter, Sir John Edge (with his wife and daughter), the Duke and Duchess of Montrose, and others. There are also group portraits from the wedding of Sir Auckland Colvin's daughter in November 1891; a fancy ball on Christmas 1888, and others, many with detailed captions naming the people on photos (i.e. C. Spedding, R. Boothby, Strachey, Mr. Spankie, Miss Spedding, Mr. Malcomson).
The album houses a number of photos of Sir John Edge captioned as “Dad,” his wife Laura (née Loughborough, 1848-1936) captioned as “Mother,” Edge's daughters Ethel (1869-1934), Kathleen, and Helga (1885-1976), “Our House. Allahabad, 1889”, family horses and dogs, and interiors of Edge's residence. It is likely that the album was compiled or annotated by Edge's son John (1873-1896) who graduated from Cambridge and “was preparing for the Diplomatic Service when his health broke down, and the doctors sent him out to India,” where he died at the age of 23 (see: The Colonies & India, London, 12 September 1896, p. 16). The album opens with a large photo of Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company's steamer Kaisar-i-Hind (I, 1878-1897), and five large views of the Suez Canal by Zangaki, probably acquired by John Edge on his way to India.
Subject Terms:
Agra (India) -- Description and travel.
Allahabad (India) -- Description and travel.
British -- India.
Edge, Ethel, 1869-1934.
Edge, Helga, 1885-1976.
Edge, John, 1841-1926.
Edge, John, 1873-1896.
Edge, Kathleen.
Edge, Laura, 1848-1936.
Great Britain. Army. King's Royal Rifle Corps.
Hunting -- India.
India -- Description and travel.
India. Army. Allahabad Volunteer Rifles.
Kaiser-i-Hind (Ship)
Naini Tal (India) -- Description and travel.
Suez Canal (Egypt)
Tiger hunting -- India.
Albumen prints.
Photograph albums.
Travel photography.
Adelphoi Zangaki (Firm)

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