Brislington Community Museum

J H Rea

The St Anne's postcard publisher J H Rea is known to have produced only one postcard although it's probable more will be identified. His name was James Herbert Rea and at the time he was publishing he ran the newsagent shop at 68 Langton Court Road, which gave him an ideal platform for selling his postcards.

He was born on 6 Dec 1879 to Harriett and Thomas Henry Rea, who were living at 25 Victoria Street, Bristol, and was baptised as James Herbert Thomas Rea on 22 Feb 1880 at the church of St Simon, Bristol.

The 1901 census shows him as the youngest of four sons, with three sisters (most of whom were older than him), all living in the same household at 3 Zion Road in the St Philip & Jacob area of Bristol. Aged 21, his profession was that of a self-employed photographer. That snippet of information makes it highly likely that he actually took the photograph for his postcard.

On 19 Jan 1911 he and May Marshall (aged 22, nine years his junior) were married at the parish church of Holy Trinity, Bristol. Her father, who was deceased, had been a billiard marker, a profession in which James himself was now employed. At the time of their marriage they both lived at 3 Zion Road.

The couple had three children: Stanley, Harry, and Queenie, who were all baptised at Holy Trinity in 1912, 1914, and 1918 respectively. At the time of his daughter's birth James was a club manager and they lived on the premises at 84 Stokes Croft, Bristol, sadly though, Queenie didn't outlive that year. In 1925 the couple registered the birth of another daughter, Enid.

Their son Stanley married Dorothy Baker in 1932 at the church of St Luke, Brislington. The groom lived at 68 Langton Court Road, St Anne's Park, Brislington, where his father James was a newsagent (his name "J H Rea" was above the door of the shop).

The couple moved to Devon where in 1959 James died, followed later that year by his widow May.

His local postcard is:

Langton Court Road - Langton Court Road, St. Anne's Park. This looks to the southwest, and includes the Langton Court Hotel. Earliest known picture: 22 May 1924.

Ken Taylor

Regrettably we can't exhibit this postcard until either the identity of the photographer is known (and perhaps also the copyright status of their picture), or we secure funds to apply for a batch of orphan works licences.