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The Stanley Twins, F.E. and F.O., engaged in the photography business prior to making the Stanley Steam Car.

F. E. Stanley opened a photographic business and sold portraits door to door in Auburn and Lewiston, ME, before opening a studio in Lewiston in 1876 or 1877.

They closed the studio when their dry plate business grew and they needed access to the amenities of a major city. The Stanleys moved to Newton, MA in 1890, and created the Stanley Dry Plate Company.[1]

This page documents the style of printing on the Stanley's Auburn and Lewiston, ME images and the variations of Stanley Dry Plate boxes.

Auburn, Me

F. E. Stanley Studio Portait, ca: 1875, Auburn, ME F. E. Stanley Studio Portait, ca: 1875, Auburn, ME

These two images carry F. E. Stanley's name as well as his address, Phoenix Block, in Auburn, ME.

F. E. Stanley Studio Portait, ca: 1875, Auburn, ME

This image carries a different type style than the script seen above. It was produced in Auburn, ME.

F. E. Stanley Studio Portait, ca: 1875, Auburn, ME

This image carries both the Lewiston and Auburn locations.

Lewiston, Me

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This image carries the Lewiston location, but the handwritten information the back reads "Journal Hather Smith Auburn ME." This suggests that either the subject came to Lewiston to be photographed or that Hather Smith was photographed in Auburn but her image printed in Lewiston.

Stanley Carte de Visite, ca: 1876 - 1890, Lewiston, ME Stanley Photograph, Lewiston, ME, ca: 1885 Stanley Carte de Visite, ca: 1876 - 1890, Lewiston, ME Stanley Carte de Visite, ca: 1876 - 1890, Lewiston, ME

Jennie Ambrose, Lewiston ME 1881 Stanley Photograph Carte De Viste Front Jennie Ambrose, Lewiston ME 1881 Stanley Photograph Carte De Viste Reverse

This image is dated 1881 and is identified as Jennie Ambrose.

Stanley Carte de Visite, ca: 1876 - 1890, Lewiston, ME

Carte de Visite examples of the Stanley's Studio, Lewiston, ME.

Stanley Photograph, Lewiston, ME Studio, ca: 1885

These two photos were identified by the dealer who sold them as a husband and wife. There is no documentation to support this assertion.

F. E. Sanley Photographic Studio, Sands Building, Lisbon Street, Lewiston, ME, Cabinet Card, Unidentified, Front F. E. Sanley Photographic Studio, Sands Building, Lisbon Street, Lewiston, ME, Cabinet Card, Unidentified, Reverse

This unidentified cabinet card and the card below measure 4.25" x 6.50" and is adorned on the reverse with a magnificent bit of Victorian advertising. They were acquired separately.

F. E. Stanley Photographic Studio Cabinet Card, Sands Building, Lisbon Street, Lewiston, ME, Front F. E. Stanley Photographic Studio Cabinet Card, Sands Building, Lisbon Street, Lewiston, ME, Reverse Stanley Studio Photograph, September 1888, Lewiston, ME  L. Ingersoll Front Stanley Studio Photograph, September 1888, Lewiston, ME  L. Ingersoll, Reverse

This Lewiston image is dated September 1888 and carries the name "L____ Ingersoll".

F. E. Stanley Photographic Studio, Lewiston, ME, inscribed Merry Christmas to Gracie from Lilas Front F. E. Stanley Photographic Studio, Lewiston, ME, inscribed Merry Christmas to Gracie from Lilas,  Reverse

This image carries the inscription "Merry Christmas to Gracie from Lilas."

Stanley Studio, Lewiston, ME, Cabinet Card Unidentified

This image carries no incsription.

Stanley Competitors in Lewiston

Curtis & Ross, Photographers in Lewiston, ME, ca: 1880 Curtis & Ross, Photographers in Lewiston, ME, ca: 1880

These two images were acquired with the Hather Smith image above, apparently coming from the same source. Curtis and Ross were apparently competitors to F. E. Stanley in Lewiston, ME. The lady at the left is identified as Katie Richards of Winthrop, ME.

Stanley Dry Plate Negative Box, Newton, MA

This Stanley Dry Plate box holds 5" x 7" negatives. Three survive in their original paper sleeves.

Stanley Dry Plate Company, Newton, MA, ca: 1890, 3 1/2" plates, front Stanley Dry Plate Company, Newton, MA, ca: 1890, 3 1/2" plates, reverse

This Stanley Dry Plate box carries the Newton, Mass. location. Its glass plate negatives were 3 1/2" x 3 1/2".

Stanley Dry Plate Company box, Newton, MA, ca: 1885 front Stanley Dry Plate Company box, Newton, MA, ca: 1885 reverse

This Stanley Dry Plate box carries the Newton, Mass. location. Its glass plate negatives were 3 9/16" x 4 3/4".

Stanley Dry Plate Company, Newton, MA, ca: 1890, Glass Plate Negatives

This Stanley Dry Plate box is filled with 4" x 5" galss negatives.

Stanley Dry Plate Company box, Rochester, NY. ca: 1904 - 1910 Stanley Dry Plate Company, Negative Box, Successors, Kodak

These two Stanley Dry Plate boxes were produced very shortly after Kodak acquired the Stanley business. Note the inscription: Successors to the Stanley Dry Plate Co.

This Stanley Dry Plate box was filled with 4" x 5" negatives. Note the inscription: Successors to the Stanley Dry Plate Co.

Stanley Dry Plate Company box, Rochester, NY. ca: 1904 - 1910 Stanley Dry Plates, Kodak, Rochester, New York.  ca: 1905

This Stanley Dry Plate box carries tne note REMOVED TO ROCHESTER, N.Y.. It is filled with 4" x 5" glass negatives.

Stanley Dry Plate Company box, Rochester, NY. ca: 1904 - 1910 3 1/2 x 3 1/2, unopened Stanley Dry Plate Company box, Rochester, NY. ca: 1904 - 1910, 3 1/2 x 3 1/2, unopened

This Stanley Dry Plate box was never opened and still contains its unexposed 3 1/2" x 3 1/2" dry plates.

Stanley Dry Plate box, Eastman Kodak, made for Defender Photo Supply Company, Rochester, NY ca: 1905 - 1910

This Stanley Dry Plate box was made by Kodak for the Defender Photo Supply Company of Rochester, NY. Size: 5" x 7" dry plates.

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Developing photographs in the late 19th century was a complicated process. The Stanley's provided their customers with instructions. This brochure may have been included in every box of glass plate negatives. This brochure measures 3 1/2" wide x 5" high. It lists both the Newton, MA and Montreal, CAN factories as well as a sales office in Chicago, ILL.

asdfasdf asdfasdf Stanley Dry Plate Company, February 26, 1887, Letter to Unknown Supplier

This letter originated in the Stanley's Montreal office on February 26, 1887.

Stanley Dry Plate, Newton, MA Advertising Cover 1894, Front

This advertising cover carries a Columbian Exposition stamp, Columbus In Sight of Land. The postmark is poorly struck, but is probably 1894.

Stanley Dry Plate, Newton, MA Advertising Cover 1894, Reverse Stanley Dry Plate Company Letterhead, May 10, 1895, F. O. Stanley, J. H. Penney & Sons. Bryant & Stratton Commercial School, Boston, H. E. Hibbard Typewriter Use

In May 1895, someone at the Stanley Dry Plate Company wrote to J. W. Penny and Sons about F. O. Stanley's typewriter, which he procured from the Breyant and Stratton Commercial school in Boston. The writer recommended Mr. H. E. Hibbard and suggested that F. O. could have a machine sent to J. W. Penney. Penney made some of the dry plate machinery and later would participate in the steam car business.

Eastman Kodak Glass Plate Negative Box, ca: 1900

Here are some contemporary Eastman Kodak glass plate negative boxe. Click Here to seem more examples.

[1]See Foster, Kit, The Stanley Steamer: America's Legendary Steam Car, (Kingfield, ME, The Stanley Museum, 2004), for a history of the Stanley photograhy business. We suggest you buy a copy from the Stanley Museum.

Contact us if you have additional information about F. E. Stanley in Auburn or Lewiston, ME, or Newton, MA dry plate business, or if you have questions.

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This web page took four to five hours to scan, research, design, and upload. Thank you for supporting the Virtual Steam Car Museum!