St. Patrick's Day Meets Women's History Month
Photographer's ImprintWilliam Abernethy started his first photographic studio in Belfast in 1885. William claimed to have photographed four generations of the Royal Family. His son, Harold, photographed the Prince of Wales, later to become the Duke of Windsor.
At one point in his career, William had seven studios throughout the province; he and his assistants were known to average three hundred client photographs per day.
In 1900, William Abernathy was honored with a Royal Warrant in Belfast, as photographer to Her Majesty, Queen Victoria. He photographed her during the Royal visit to Dublin in April 1900.
Queen Victoria either presumed preparing for, or recovering from, her grand Dublin review in 1900Queen Victoria was never particularly enthusiastic about her kingdoms of the “Celtic fringe.” During her sixty-four year reign, she spent seven years in Scotland, seven weeks in Ireland, and seven nights in Wales.
It must have been exceedingly difficult to obtain a Royal Warrant in Ireland or Wales. Mr. Abernethy was very fortunate.
Reconciling the Celt: British National Identity, Empire, and the 1911 Investiture of the Prince of Wales
John S. Ellis, The Journal of British Studies, Vol. 37, No. 4 (Oct., 1998), p. 391; online JSTOR http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0021-9371(199810)37%3A4%3C391%3ARTCBNI%3E2.0.CO%3B2-U : accessed 15 March 2008.
Young Woman. Abernethy. Belfast. Cabinet Card. Unknown. Privately held by the footnoteMaven, Preston, Washington. 2007.