Brattleboro Photographers

Thomas Martin Easterly 1845.jpg

Thomas M. Easterly

Thomas Martin Easterly was born in Guilford, Vermont to Tunis and Philomela Easterly on October 31, 1809. Easterly first taught calligraphy and penmanship, residing in Montpelier, Vermont from October 1835 through the following April 1836.

With an extensive practice by 1838, and teaching practical business handwriting chiefly at the blackboard in the High School Hall in Brattleboro, Easterly bought a house in November 1839 just north of the mill pond at lower Main Street, that he sold in September 1841 to the papermaker Nathan Woodcock.

The Vermont Phoenix for February 28, 1840 informs the public that "Mr. Easterly's second course of instruction in Writing, will commence on Monday evening next, at the High School Hall."


Vermont Asylum For The Insane

Thomas M. Easterly, Daguerreotype, Brattleboro Vermont 1848.jpg

Brattleboro In 1848

Thomas M. Easterly, View South From Chesterfield Mountain.jpg

View South From Wantastiquet

Thomas Easterly learned the daguerreotype process in New York, possibly with Charles and Richard Meade, and spent 1844 in New Orleans in business. He returned to Brattleboro in 1845, but by October he was established in Iowa, taking daguerreotypes of Plains Indians.

Thomas M. Easterly, May 25, 1842 Writing Classes Advertisement.jpg

In frontier St. Louis, Missouri, Easterly opened a daguerreotype studio on the corner of Fourth and Olive Streets, near where the St. Louis Arch stands today. His mastery of the daguerreotype is apparent even in his earliest known works.

Thomas M. Easterly, Daguerreotype June 18, 1847 Lightning Over St. Louis, Missouri.jpg

Streak of Lightning

St. Louis, Missouri, June 18, 1847

Thomas M. Easterly, Daguerreotypist, Circa 1865.jpg

Thomas M. Easterly In 1865


John Lyman Lovell

John Lyman Lovell, Self Portrait Daguerreotype, 1855, Cutler's Block Studio, Brattleboro, Vermont.JPG

John Lyman Lovell

Self Portrait In Daguerreotype 1855

Silver-Plated Copper Base, 1/6 Plate Size

Taken At His Cutler's Block Studio On Main Street

Courtesy Of Gunter Mueller, VinimagePlus,

Indian Rock.jpg

Indian Rock

This photograph was taken during a visit by geologist Professor Charles Henry Hitchcock of Amherst College on Wednesday, June 13, 1866. The Vermont Phoenix for June 15, 1866 reports that---

Personal. -- Prof. Hitchcock, of Amherst College, visited this place on Wednesday, and examined the rude cuttings in the rocks near the mouth of West river. He expressed the opinion that they were of sufficient age and had every other evidence of genuine hieroglyphics, as left in numerous places by the Indians who once inhabited this locality.

John L. Lovell most likely took this photograph. Lovell was the finest professional photographer in Brattleboro until his removal to Amherst in 1856, and he also later photographed Orra White Hitchcock, the professor's mother, about 1860. His interest in scientific photography and Connecticut River geological features was life long.

This photograph was first published in Charles Clark Willoughby's "Antiquities of the New England Indians; with Notes on the Ancient Cultures of the Adjacent Territory" (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Cosmos Press, The Peabody Museum of Archeology and Ethnology, Harvard University, 1935) Page 169.


Daguerreotype View From Canal Street By Elm Street

Man With Beaver Hat, Possibly John Lyman Lovell

John L. Lovell, January 1856, Four Month Illness Ad.jpg

Vermont Phoenix, January 26, 1856 Advertisement

In May 1856 John L. Lovell took an ambrotype glassplate view of Brattleboro from a location about one-third of the way up Wantastiquet. This ambrotype was engraved by John Batchelder by August 1856 for publication by John H. Bufford, Lithography, 313 Washington Street, Boston.

The following photographs here present details from John Batchelder's work---

Squabble Hollow, 1856 McClellan Map.jpg

Squabble Hollow

Detail From A Lithograph By John Batchelder

From An Ambrotype By John Lyman Lovell Taken In May 1856 From Wantastiquet

Jacob Estey's Melodeon Factory, With Clerstory, Center

Estey & Kathan's Tombstone Shop, Front Center

S. Gates Furniture Warehouse With Cupola, Right

Paper Mill Warehouses, Center Back

Reed's Hill, Front Left

Frost Meadow And Mansion, Back Right

Buddington Grist Mill, Formerly A Baptist Church From Guilford, Front Right

Brattleboro, May 1856, Vernon Road, Reed's Hill, Canal Street.jpg

Reed's Hill, Vernon Road, Canal Street


Lithograph Taken From May 1856 Ambrotype By John L. Lovell

Centre Congregational Church, Unitarian Church, Central School

Josh Clark's Bowling Alley On Connecticut River

John Lovell's ambrotype here shows the Centre Congregational Church with its chapel built in 1854 and its horse sheds in back, with its steeple still placed within the church, ten years before the tempest that toppled it. Also seen is the Universalist Church, and the Central School.

The Asahel Clapp house, the Connecticut River boathouse, and the narrow track that became Grove Street, are all captured by the lens and the long glassplate exposure which ambrotype required in 1856.

Another detail shows the Central School, and north from it the residence of Daniel P. Kingsley, which was later owned by Phillip Wells, then by Gen. John W. Phelps. Ferdinand Tyler's house stands next north. Ashur Spencer's house stands at the corner of Walnut Street, with poplar trees nearby---


John Batchelder Lithograph, After John L. Lovell Ambrotype, May 1856 View Of Brattleboro, Vermont.jpg


John Batchelder Lithograph - May 1856 - John L. Lovell Ambrotype

Bradley Farm, Asylum Cemetery Woods, North Main Street, Asa Keyes House

Years later this lithograph was described with all the changes that had taken place in over thirty years---

---Frost & Proctor's window has this week the focus of a good deal of interest. The reason was the appearance there of an old lithograph of Brattleboro, John Batchelder artist, and published by the Buffords in 1856.

It shows a very small village as compared to the present. Esteyville was a pasture, Prospect Hill, "Spauldings Pine Woods" as it was called then, a forest, the Chapin district of course was open, there was no Oak street, no Grove or Tyler, or Brook, or Forest or Frost streets, no Harris Place, not a house on Terrace street and only five houses in all that section between Walnut and North Main streets, no houses on High street or Western Avenue north of the Unitarian parsonage, nothing in all that section now occupied by Mechanics Square, only two on Birge street, nothing where the Estey shops, the Smith & Hunt and the Carpenter works now stand, nothing but four houses on Flat street, no Episcopal church, no gas house.

The village consisted of the Canal and Clark street, the Elliot, Green and High, and the Main and North Main street districts with little tendrils running out Chase and Walnut streets.

One of the prominent landmarks in those days was the "bowling alley" kept by Josh Clark and set on stilts 25 or 30 feet high on the river bank, about back of the Congregational church, and reached by a stairway from Main street. In those days our moral sentiment couldn't tolerate such a resort and it had to get into New Hampshire jurisdiction.

Another interesting relic is a slave driver's whip, which a runaway negro presented to the late Chas C. Frost in the days before the war. Mr. Frost, who was an ardent abolitionist, kept a sort of station for the "underground railway," and the fugitive slaves, being lodged at Greenfield, would be forwarded to him, he would feed and lodge them and pay their way to the next friend north.

It was a work that had to be conducted very secretly, and few citizens knew much about it even then; but large numbers of the unfortunates were befriended by him in this way.

Windham County Reformer, May 22, 1891.

Main Street, 1854, Daguerreotype By John L. Lovell.jpg

Main Street 1854

Daguerreotype By John L. Lovell

John Lyman Lovell instructed his student George Harper Houghton in the art of the daguerreotype for three years, beginning in 1852. George Houghton's well-known photograph of Main Street looking north was taken a decade later, with the camera placed in the upper-floor window of the large brick house of Anthony Van Doorn, seen at the left in Lovell's 1854 daguerreotype.

The large house at the right was built by Elihu Hotchkiss late in the eighteenth century. His nephew, Elihu Hotchkiss Thomas---Brattleboro's first daguerreotypist---may have sold his images by "the pencil of nature" here, beginning in March 1841, or at his brick shop six rods south from the Whetstone bridge---

Elihu Hotchkiss Thomas, March 25, 1841, First Dagruerreotypist In Brattleboro.jpg

John Lyman Lovell eventually sold his premises to Jeremiah D. Wells and Frederick N. Kneeland of Northampton, Massachusetts, praising their skill and gentlemanly manner.

Main Street, Brattleboro, John L. Lovell Daguerreotype 1853.jpg

John L. Lovell, 1853 Daguerreotype, Reed's Hill Area From Main Street.jpg

Reed's Hill Seen From Main Street

Main Street, 1853, John L. Lovell Daguerreotype, Signs Detail.jpg

John L. Lovell, February 9, 1855, Stereoscope Photographs.jpg


Otis Hubbard Cooley

Otis H. Cooley Daguerreotype.jpg

Daguerreotype By Otis H. Cooley

Standing---George C. Lawrence, Keith White, Jarvis Crandall
Seated---William E. Ryther, Luther Sargent, Rufus Pratt

George Charles Lawrence---Hotel Proprietor
Keith White---Teamster
Jarvis Joseph Crandall---Sheriff of Windham County
William Eaton Ryther---Newspaper Editor
Luther Sargent---Gentleman Farmer
Rufus Pratt---Meat Market Proprietor

Editor William E. Ryther placed a notice in his Vermont Phoenix for Thursday, April 22, 1847 on page three---

Mr Cooley is doing a flourishing business in the Daguerreotype line. During the past week he has copied some of the important characters in the village, including ourself and our neighbor Democrat. His pictures can't be beat---particularly if the sitter is good looking. As we shall not consent to be exhibited as a "show" much longer, our friends will do well to call soon.

In another notice, the Bay State Weekly Courier reported that---

Mr Cooley, the Daguerreotypist, is taking pictures for the Green Mountain people in Brattleboro. He will have to use some of his largest plates for the girls, or our memory does not serve us correctly. Will he not take and preserve a picture of one of Dr Wesselhoeft's patients in the act of singing "A wet sheet and a flowing sea?"

Otis Hubbard Cooley was a native of Granville, Massachusetts, born on June 23, 1820. He operated a studio in Springfield. There were his portraits for the poet Emily Dickinson and her sister, Lavinia Norcross Dickinson.

With the help of the portrait artist Benjamin Franklin Popkins, Otis Cooley set up his studio in Brattleboro. An oil portrait of Dr. John Wilson, also known as "Captain Thunderbolt", by Otis H. Cooley, was taken from its old place in the Brooks Memorial Library. Otis H. Cooley died on November 18, 1860.


Vermont Phoenix, December 3, 1847


Caleb Lysander Howe

Caleb Lysander, Howe Cabinet Card.jpg

View West From Brattleboro Common, Lithograph After Photograph By Caleb L. Howe, Published 1861.jpg

View West From Brattleboro Common

Caleb L. Howe Photograph, Attributed To 1854

Lithograph By Fred Meyer & Co., N. Y. 1861

Caleb L. Howe, Sphereotype, Albert Bisbee Patent May 27, 1856.jpg

Portrait In Sphereotype

Courtesy Of Jonathan Webb

Scantic Antiques, East Longmeadow, Massachusetts

Caleb L. Howe experimented with the sphereotype, an innovative process patented by Albert Bisbee on May 27, 1856. The sphereotype was a positive collodion on glass, exposed through a spherical mask the desired size of its frame. This unidentified couple's portrait was possibly taken for their wedding.

Lithograph 1861 After Caleb L. Howe Photograph In Detail, Vermont Asylum For The Insane, Gardens.jpg

Asylum Gardens

Caleb L. Howe, Relievo Ambrotype Portrait.jpg

Relievo Ambrotype By Caleb L. Howe

Tentative Identification, Charles N. Davenport Of Wilmington, Vermont

Mary A. Butterfield, Daughter To Franklin And Mary Holland, Civil War Era, C. L. Howe Photograph.jpg

Mary A. Butterfield

Married January 10, 1867 To Lucien A. Elmer

Mary Butterfield was the daughter of Franklin Butterfield and Mary Holland, who lived on a farm on Wickopee Hill in Dummerston. C. L. Howe's photograph shows the "woman of quiet, gentle nature".

Portrait Of A Tall Man By Caleb Lysander Howe.jpg

Emil Apfelbaum

Emil Apfelbaum was born in Dantzig, Prussia in 1829, and loved singing his old country's songs in a powerful singing voice. In Caleb Howe's ambrotype, he is wearing his Prussian cap. Emil was six and a half feet tall, with a long, black beard. He worked as the manager for the Lawrence Water Cure, then as bookkeeper for twenty-five years with the Estey Company. Emil had an interest in the Fire Department, and during the Civil War worked with the U. S. Sanitary Commission. Emil's wife was Augusta Apfel.

Vermont Asylum For The Insane, After Caleb L. Howe Photograph.jpg

Mrs Everett W. Phillips, Photograph By Caleb L. Howe.jpg

Mrs. Everett W. Phillips

Stella C. Barrett Or Elizabeth A. McLean

By Caleb L. Howe

Caleb L. Howe & Sons Photograph, Circa 1880.jpg

Caleb L. Howe & Sons Photograph July 1879

Baptist Church With North Tower Only

St. Michael's Episcopal Church

Centre Congregational Church With New Chapel

Gravel Pit Above Railroad Tracks

Woman Walking South Along Meadow Lane, Later Oak Street

Old High School, Far Right, Wing On South Side


Caleb L. Howe

Mary Howe, Opera Singer, By Caleb L. Howe.jpg

Mary Howe, Portrait By Caleb L. Howe

John C. Howe.jpg

John C. Howe


Adin French Styles

Adin F. Styles, Stereoscope View, Brattleboro, Vermont.jpg

Adin French Styles, View From Prospect Street

Old Baptist Church On Elliot Street At Center


George Harper Houghton



George Harper Houghton, 1861 Civil War Camp In Brattleboro, First Vermont Volunteers.jpg

Civil War Camp At Brattleboro In 1861

First Vermont Volunteers

George Harper Houghton, In Detail, Photographer


George H. Houghton's Late 1866 Photograph

George Houghton's Main Street Photograph takes a well-known 1866 glassplate negative photograph which shows the view north from the Anthony Van Doorn house, and enlarges different areas within it to reveal its heretofore hidden, magnificent details---


August 26, 1864


Celebration For The Seventh Vermont Regiment

August 26, 1864

George Houghton's Photograph

The regiment arrived in Brattleboro at 11 o'clock A. M. on the 26th of Aug. It formed in line and marched through Main street to the field at the north end of the village, where it was reviewed. . .After the speech, the regiment was marched back to the Town Hall, where it was welcomed to a collation by the town of Brattleboro. . .

Vermont Phoenix, September 2, 1864.

This photograph shows the flags at the Town Hall, the Revere House, the Brattleboro House, the old Steen's Corner, and in the foreground, the hitching posts, rail and chain link fence bordering the St. Michael's Episcopal Church yard. Also seen here are men and boys in various activities, including a young player on the recorder, the harp, or the penny whistle.



Revere House, Brattleboro House, Steen's Corner

George Harper Houghton is remembered for his photographs taken during the Peninsular Campaign in Virginia, in the War Between the States, following the 2nd Vermont Regiment to Camp Griffin in November 1861, and to Wolf Run Shoals in April 1863.

In Brattleboro, Houghton photographed scores of veterans during June 1864 with the return of the 8th Vermont Regiment to Brattleboro, during August 1864 with the Seventh Vermont Regiment, in September 1864 with the Fourth Vermont Regiment, and for years before---

Portrait Of A Union Soldier By George Harper Houghton.jpg


Willis Herbert Phillips

Corner Main Street, Elliot Street, Willis Herbert Phillips, Photographer.jpg

Corner Main Street, Elliot Street, Blake Block

Before May 1869

Willis Herbert Phillips was born on July 2, 1855 in Stratton, Vermont to Aaron Willis Phillips and Lomira "Almira" Submit Hale. His family relations worked for the Estey company.

Since this photograph was taken in spring, and the Blake Block burned in later 1869, Willis Herbert Phillips must have been fourteen years old or younger at this time. His camera is in the offices of Caleb Lysander Howe, so it seems likely that Willis was Caleb's apprentice.

W. H. Phillips married Alice Mary Newell, and boarded in an Estey house on Frost Street. Alice conducted a hair and fancy goods shop on Main Street, opposite the Brooks House, upstairs, during 1884.

At this time, Willis was the partner in the photography studio Wyatt & Phillips, and lived in the house at 10 Washington Street. By 1903, Phillips was resident in Bennington. Willis Herbert Phillips died on January 11, 1925 and is buried in Morningside Cemetery.


Jason Ward Prouty

William R. Crowell, Daisy E. Crowell, Circa 1888, By Jason Ward Prouty.jpg

William R. Crowell, Daisy E. Crowell

Photograph By Jason W. Prouty About 1888

William "Will" Ransom Crowell and his sister Daisy E. Crowell were the children of Hiland Ransom Crowell and Lillian "Lillie" Estabrooks. William was born on June 2, 1879 and Daisy on August 12, 1884.

Jason Ward Prouty, known as J. W. Prouty was born in Spencer, Massachusetts on October 23, 1849 to Plummer Prouty and Sarah Gould Holman. The family removed to Wilmington, Vermont in 1857.

Jason Prouty married first, Emma Ella Smith of Chesterfield, New Hampshire on November 10, 1874. Their daughter Minna Sarah, "Minnie" was born on September 17, 1876. J. W. Prouty was resident in Brattleboro by 1877, but his marriage ended in divorce. In 1887 the photographer was living at 19 Washington Street.

During 1897 J. W. Prouty was living in Wahpeton, Richland, North Dakota.

Jason Prouty was living in 1900 in the household of Annette Newton at the Brattleboro Retreat. He was living in Marlboro, Vermont when he married second, in Albany, New York, on May 20, 1903, Ellen A. Newton, the daughter of Charles Newton and Annette E. Horton. Prouty was listed as a printer in Albany.

In his final year, Jason W. Prouty was a director in the Spencer, Massachusetts boot and shoe concern, Isaac Prouty & Co. Prouty died on April 12, 1910, survived by his wife Ellen and by his daughter Minna, a stenographer and bookkeeper in Greenfield, Massachusetts, who died in June 1966 at eighty-nine years.


David A. Henry

Valley Mill, Flour, Meal, Feed, Stereoscope By David A. Henry.jpg

Edward Crosby's Flour Mill In Summer 1857

New Connecticut River Bridge Partly Built

Robert Pender's Fort On Wantastiquet Peak

Young Woman Portrait By David A. Henry.jpg

Portrait Of A Young Woman By David A. Henry

Connecticut River Bridge, Little River Bridge, David A. Henry Photographer.jpg

David A. Henry Photograph

D. A. Henry Card, Cutler's Block.jpg

View Of Brattleboro, D. A. Henry, Photographer.png

Canal Street, Clark Street

View From Prospect Hill

David A. Henry Photographer

E. Morse, David A. Henry Photograph.jpg

This woman with a stricken expression is identified only as "E. Morse". She is possibly Elizabeth W. Potter, the wife of Wareham Morse, who was a saddler, like his son Henry P. Morse, conducting a harness shop in West Brattleboro Village on the Main Street and by the "Tannery Pond"---nearly opposite the Congregational church---during 1873 to 1880.

Elizabeth died on August 7, 1879. Her death was "Accidental". Wareham Morse died on March 8, 1880. His death was from "Over-dose of medicine". Henry P. Morse died on January 31, 1881. His death was from "Scrofula in head".


David A. Henry was born in Canada about 1828. He married Martha, and took stereoscopic views of the Brooks House, the Whetstone Falls, and documented the disastrous April 1869 flood. His three children were Walter E., Frank E., and Annie M. Henry.

David A. Henry removed to his farm in Guilford in 1878, on Lots 112 and 113 in District No. 14. In 1894 he served on the Board of Trustees of the Guilford Free Library.


Arthur Damon Wyatt

Nellie May Gray Pierce, By A. D. Wyatt.jpg

Nellie May Gray

Mrs. Dr. Willard Henry Pierce

Young Woman, Photograph By Arthur Damon Wyatt.jpg

Young Woman, Photograph By Arthur D. Wyatt


Delano Dana Dunklee

Blake Block Fire.jpg

Blake Block Fire

Stereoscope By Delano Dana Dunklee, Called D. D. Dunklee

Delano Dana Dunklee was born on April 13, 1848 in Williamsville, Newfane, Vermont to Emory Dunklee and Wealthy Ann Evans. By 1870 he was living in Brattleboro with twenty-one other household tenants. D. D. Dunklee married Mary Adelpha Burnett on June 1, 1875.

Dunklee removed to Greenfield, Massachusetts, where he is credited in the patent granted for an improved photographic print mounter on January 22, 1894, and on June 2, 1899 for an egg-holder and alarm patent. Delano Dunklee died in Brattleboro on July 29, 1933 at age eighty-five.

Delano Dana Dunklee, Stereoview, Street With Fences, Tree Shaded.jpg

Early Stereoview By Delano Dana Dunklee

Looking South On Asylum Street, Now Linden Street


George W. Parker

George Washington Parker, Estey Organ Works, Circa 1870, Three Orphans.jpg

Estey Organ Works

Stereoview Is Called "Three Orphans"

George Washington Parker, Workers Milling Reed Cell Blocks.jpg

Workers Milling Reed Cell Blocks

George Washington Parker and his wife Jennie lived at 55 High Street. Parker's specialty was "crayon artist", and he also taught instrumental music. He was active in Brattleboro by 1879, for about seven years.








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