Moody family photograph album

album containing salt prints, albumen prints and a sketch

Among the photographs in this rare pictorial album are images of two unidentified First Nations men. There has been speculation that they are the first made and/or earliest surviving photographs of First Nations people in BC. They are certainly among the earliest, and are likely the work of one of the Royal Engineers who was trained in photography, a technology starting to be used as an official part of the work of the Royal Engineers.

Richard Clement Moody (1813-1887) – soldier, colonial administrator and public servant – was active in British Columbia from 1859 to 1863, serving as commander of the Columbia Detachment of the Royal Engineers and Commissioner of Lands and Works. He was accompanied to BC by his wife, Mary Susannah Moody and their four children. They had three more children while stationed in New Westminster.

The Moody album includes more than 90 photographs, a sketch and an engraving collected by the Moodys. It depicts their homes, travels and interests in England, Belgium, France, Italy and Japan. It contains four photographs pertaining to British Columbia, and a pencil sketch by Sarah Crease of the Moody home in New Westminster, dated 1863.

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This object selected by Don Bourdon. View Profile »