John Starbuck 1810 – 1883
First established around 1856 in Boston, Lincolnshire. He later opened a studio in Alford and trained his sons Sam and John and daughters Elizabeth, Clara and Emma in photography. Emma married photographer Charles Sheppard Smyth.
|1851||High Street, Boston, Lincolnshire – age 40 – cotton winder|
|1861||? Witham Marsh, Boston, Lincolnshire – age 50 – photographer|
|1871||East End, Alford, Lincolnshire – age 60 – photographer|
|with Clara Starbuck – daughter – age 24 – assistant photographer|
|and John B. Starbuck – son – age 20 – assistant photographer|
|1881||Park Square, Alford, Lincolnshire – age 70 – photographer|
|with Clara Starbuck – daughter – age 34 – photographer|
John Starbuck was born in Walton, in Suffolk in 1810, the son of John Starbuck and Elizabeth Nesse.
1833 John moved from his native Suffolk to Leicester where he married Jane Coleman in 1833. They had four children there before moving to Lincolnshire where they had another four children. The family eventually settled in Boston where John worked as a cotton winder.
1856 John took up photography in his mid 40s around 1856 when the ambrotype was gaining popularity over the daguerreotype which had reigned as the predominant medium for portrait photography for some 15 years and was on the wane.
John’s children no doubt learnt the trade in their father’s studio. Samuel and Elizabeth worked as photographers in Burgh le March
1863 John’s son Samuel Starbuck set up his own studio in Alford in 1863.
1867 Samuel published an interesting advertisement in the Stamford Mercury on the 6th September 1867 concerning his studio in Alford but also mentioning his mobile studio van that visited Skendleby on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. The advert is shown below.
1869 John’s son, Samuel suffered an untimely death in 1869 and John had to sort out Samuel’s financial affairs – see the newspaper report below.
John Starbuck continued to work in Alford assisted by his daughter Clara and son John. Emma married photographer Charles Sheppard Smyth and worked with him in Alford.
John seems to have retired from photography in his early 60s and his son John Bissell Starbuck appears to have continued the business before establishing a short lived partnership with Edwin Nainby, who had married John’s sister Mary Jane. Nainby remained active in photography in Alford for some years while John Bissell Starbuck worked in a variety of locations in Lincolnshire.
1883 John Starbuck senior died in 1883, his wife dying five years later in 1888. Although she was the beneficiary of his business in John’s will Clara married a Baptist minister and relocated to Barlestone, Leicestershire.
Last Will and Testament of John Starbuck
I John Starbuck of Alford in the County of Lincoln Photographic Artist declare this to be my last Will and Testament I release my son John Bissell Starbuck from the payment of so much of the sum of One hundred pounds and interest secured by an assignment of his interest under the Will of Samuel Coleman as shall be owing at my death I bequeath to my Daughter Clara Starbuck all the stock pictures fittings goodwill book debts and other things belonging to or used in my business subject to the payment of the trade debts thereof I devise all my real estate to Samuel Muston Butcher and Robert Kemp Chemist both of Alford aforesaid Upon trust that they or the survivor of them or the heirs of such survivor their or his assigns hereinafter designated my Trustees to sell the same and divide the net proceeds after discharging the expenses of the sale thereof and the Mortgage debt thereon equally between my Daughters Clara Starbuck, Susannah Starbuck and Emma the wife of Charles Shepherd Smyth for their sole and separate use respectively Provided always that my Wife shall have the option of occupying at the rent of eight pounds a year the dwellinghouse in which I reside at the date hereof for so long as she shall choose and that as long as she shall so occupy the said dwellinghouse the sale of the said house and the adjacent dwellinghouse and premises shall be postponed and I direct the said Trustees to receive the said rent of Eight pounds the first payment whereof shall become due at the expiration of one year from my death and to let the adjacent dwellinghouse and premises from year to year and divide the said rents after paying for the Insurance thereof against loss by fire the interest on the Mortgage and other expenses equally between my said Daughters I bequeath my consumable household stores and provisions to my said wife I bequeath my household furniture books and all articles of household ornament and use and all the residue of my personal estate unto and equally to be divided by my Executors between my four Daughters Susannah, Mary Jane the wife of Edwin Nainby, Emma the wife of Charles Shepherd Smyth and Clara after payment thereout of my debts other than Mortgage or trade debts funeral and testamentary expenses I appoint the said Samuel Muston and Robert Kemp Executors hereof I revoke all other Wills.
In Witness whereof I the said John Starbuck the Testator have hereunto set my hand this seventh day of March One thousand eight hundred and seventy eight.
………………………. JOHN STARBUCK
Signed and declared by the Testator John Starbuck to be his last Will and Testament in the joint presence of us who at his request in his presence and in the presence of each other have hereunto subscribed our names as Witnesses
James Eardley Mason – Solicitor, Alford
Arthur Clark – his clerk
Codicil to the Last Will and Testament of John Starbuck
This is a first Codicil to my Will I declare that the division of my household furniture books and all articles of household use and ornament shall be postponed until the period fixed for the sale of my dwellinghouse and that my Wife shall have the option during such period of using the aforesaid articles without making any payment for such use I appoint Isaac Nutsby of Alford aforesaid Woollen Draper and Executor and Trustee of my said Will in the place of Samuel Muston and I direct that my said Will shall be read as if the name “Isaac Nutsby” were substituted for that of “Samuel Muston” throughout
In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand this eighth day of February One thousand and eight hundred and seventy nine
Signed and acknowledged by the said John Starbuck the Testator as a Codicil to his last Will and Testament in the presence of us present at the same time who at his request in his presence and in the presence of each other have hereunto subscribed our names as Witnesses
James Eardley Mason – Solicitor, Alford
J.C Kew – his clerk
Proved at Lincoln with a Codicil the fourth day of June 1883 by the oaths of Robert Kemp the Executor named in the Will and Isaac Nutsey the Executor named in the said Codicil to whom Administration was granted
The Testator John Starbuck was late of Alford in the County of Lincoln Photographic Artist and died on the seventh day of January 1883 at Alford aforesaid
Gross personal Estate £212. 15s. 6d.
Details of will provided by Jills Family Ancestry
|Father||John Starbuck – born ?|
|Mother||Elizabeth Nesse – born ?|
|Born||2 May 1810 in Walton, Suffolk|
|Married||27 May 1833 in St. Margaret’s, Leicester, Leicestershire to Jane Coleman|
|born c.1811 in Foxton, Leicestershire, died 1888, Spilsby district, Lincolnshire|
|Child 1||Elizabeth Starbuck – born 7 Mar 1834 in Leicester, Leicestershire|
|Child 2||Susannah Starbuck – born 8 Dec 1835 in Leicester, Leicestershire|
|Child 3||Samuel Simpson Starbuck – born 1838 in Leicester, Leicestershire|
|Died 1869 in Spilsby district, Lincolnshire|
|Child 4||Mary Jane Starbuck – born 1840 in Leicester, Leicestershire|
|Married 1869 in Lincoln to Edwin Nainby,carpenter, later photographer|
|Child 5||Ann Pollard Starbuck – born 1842 in Louth, Lincolnshire|
|Child 6||Emma Starbuck – born 1844 in Conningsby, Lincolnshire|
|Married 1870 in Holbeach, Lincolnshire to Charles Sheppard Smyth,|
|Joiner and photographer|
|Child 7||Clara Starbuck – born 1847 in Boston, Lincolnshire|
|Married 1883 in Marylebone, London to John Rufus Godfrey, a Baptist Minister|
|Child 8||John Bissell Starbuck – born 1850 in Boston, Lincolnshire|
|Died||7 Jan 1883 in Alford, Lincolnshire.|
Jill Walker, Starbuck family historian and Martin Smyth (great great grandson of Charles Sheppard Smyth and Emma Starbuck), family historian.
Trade directory information courtesy of Sandy Barrie
John Starbuck – Gallery