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Plate from an early photographically illustrated work on the art of wood turning converted for use as a postcard album which sold for £4300 at Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood.

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Part of a Bearnes Hampton & Littlewood (21% buyer’s premium) sale of March 14, Specimens of Fancy Turning Executed on the Hand or Foot Lathe…, published in Phildelphia in 1869, demonstrates in its full complement of 30 mounted albumen plates (one shown above) what can be achieved with geometrical, oval, and eccentric chucks and an elliptical cutting frame.

The title page, disfigured by a large red armorial library stamp, gives only ‘An Amateur’ as the author, but the only other copies of the work I could trace in auction records – sold 20 and 30 years ago by Swann – cite the name, or rather initials, of one WEJ of Lenox, Massachusetts.