Harvey Barton & Sons Ltd
Harvey Barton & Sons published hundreds of real photograph postcards of Bristol and many elsewhere over many decades, and more than a dozen of Brislington. The 1914 edition of "Kelly's Directory of Bristol" lists Harvey Barton & Son Ltd as a Fine Art Publisher with registered offices at 40 Broad Street, and works at Upper Church Lane, St Michael's (page 835). The company though, was established in 1858.
Adverts by the leading supplier of real photograph printing machines to the postcard publishing industry, Ellis Graber of Tunbridge Wells, regularly listed notable customers that used their machines. These show Harvey Barton & Son Ltd, Bristol, had bought more than one machine, and was listed between 1913 and 1933 (Waters undated, page 19). Waters points out that the date range doesn't preclude previous and subsequent use of the machines, which were built to last. The only other Bristol-based postcard publisher in Graber's list of customers was A G Shortman and our page devoted to him has more information on the Graber machines - all of which is from Water's paper at Fading Images (see link in Bibliography, below). As fine art printers, Harvey Barton & Son not only produced real photograph pictorial postcards, which they could print from their customers' own photographs, but also used the collotype and rotary photogravure printing methods.
William Harvey Barton was born in Bristol and baptised in 1833 at the parish church of St James (all places in this biographical note are in Bristol unless stated otherwise). His father's occupation was listed as coach maker. The 1851 census shows his mother was a widow living with her son and step daughter in St James Barton, and the following census in 1861 shows William H Barton as head of the family living with his mother and step-sister in parish of St Michaels. His occupation is given as photographer, and his mother's as shareholder.
On Christmas Eve 1863 at the parish church of St Michael, William married Catherine Cartwright by licence. He was a 30-year old photographer living at the Triangle, Clifton; and she was 22 and living at Nelson Place, Clifton, the daughter of a watch maker.
The 1871 census finds the couple with three daughters, his mother and half-sister living in the parish of St Michael's. He still worked as a photographer, as indeed he still is at the time of the next census in 1881 when his two elder daughters worked as a photographer's assistant. The family now included another daughter and two sons, the youngest of whom was baptised with his father's name - William Harvey Barton - at the church of St Michael in 1878.
The 1891 census find the family has moved to Westbury-on-Trym with the head of the household an employer working as a photographer. Aged 14, his son William was attending school.
In December 1900 the younger William, now aged 24, a photographer living in St Michael's, married Florence Williams after banns at St Michael's church. She was aged 20, living in Clifton, and the daughter of a master mariner. The following year's census shows both generations living together in Cotham Road in the parish of St Matthew. Both Williams were employers in the profession of photographer.
The 1911 census shows both Williams living under the same roof in Clifton and both working as a photographic and fine art publisher. Although the senior William's wife was there, the junior William's wife wasn't.
In December 1912 the elder William died. Probate for his estate (worth in excess of £1,400) was granted to his son William Harvey, photographic publisher.
In 1917 William petitioned for divorce, and their marriage was dissolved in August 1918. In the first quarter of 1919 William remarried - his bride was Elsie Edbrook. At the time of the 1911 census she was aged 19, living at home with her parents (her father worked as a cocoa operator), three sisters and two brothers in Southville, and she was working in shorthand and a typist at a fine art publisher.
The register of 1939 shows William and Elsie still together and now living at Tyndalls Park: he worked as a printer's managing director, and she as a director to a printing firm. In 1941 he died in a nursing home, leaving an estate valued for probate at more than £7,000. Elsie didn't remarry and moved to Weston-super-Mare; she passed away in 1964, leaving an estate valued at over £47,000.
These postcards have been sequenced in the order a visitor might see the sights, travelling on the Bath Road coming from Bristol, and occasionally exploring side roads.
Black Castle - The Outer Courtyard, Arno's Castle, Brislington. Published online at Bristol Archives. Published in print by Fisher, Janet & Derek undated, page 1. Series number 115. Earliest known picture: 16 June 1909.
Black Castle - Inner Gateway, Arno's Castle. Brislington. Published online at Bristol Archives. Series number 116. Earliest known picture: 4 Oct 1911.
Bath Road (A4) - The Tram Depot, Sandy Park. Brislington. Published online at Bristol Archives; and Bristol Archives. Published in print by Fisher, Janet & Derek undated, page 2. Series number 112. Earliest known picture: 21 Sept 1909.
Talbot Road - Talbot Lane, Brislington. Published in print by Fisher, Janet et al 1987, page 33. Series number 114. Earliest known picture: 1 Mar 1912.
Water Lane - Water Lane. Brislington. Published online at Bristol Archives. Series number 113. Earliest known picture: 23 Sept 1909.
Village panorama - Brislington & Lansdown from Knowle. Published online at Bristol Archives. Earliest known picture: 25 Sept 1906.
Bristol Hill (Bath Road, A4) - Brislington. Series number 108. Earliest known picture: 1910.
The Square (Bath Road, A4) - The Tram Terminus. Brislington. Published in print by Williamson, B 1985, page 13. Series number 110. Earliest known picture: 5 Feb 1912.
Church of St Luke - The Church, Brislington. Published online at Bristol Archives. Series number 120. Earliest known picture: Apr 1910.
Brislington Hill (Bath Road, A4) - Top of White Hart Hill. Brislington. Published online at Bristol Archives. Published in print by Fisher, Janet & Derek undated, page 31; and also by Fisher, Janet et al 1983, page 46. Series number 111. Earliest known picture: 1908.
West Town Lane - The Bridge, Water Lane, Brislington. Series number 109. Earliest known picture: 1908.
Waters, Les undated, Ellis Graber, an Unsung Hero of the UK Postcard Trade, Cambridgeshire, Fading Images, https://www.fadingimages.uk/EllisGraber.pdf (accessed 24 September 2022).