The Illustrated London News report also says that the Canadian Government employed Notman to prepare the photographs. The series of letters, however, reveals that it was Notman who conceived the idea and approached the government. Notman suggested the project to the Commissioner of Public Works, and thinking that he had full agreement for the project, proceeded to produce the set. However, the commissioner had only requested a proposal of what Notman contemplated doing and what the probable cost would be. So the set was produced without an agreement upon the price to be paid to Notman. When this misunderstanding was discovered, Notman wrote, “As I am desirous that HRH should be in possession of the series, [I] have no objections to place the matter entirely in your hands, accepting whatever sum you may award for my services. “ The government officials then arranged for an estimate of the value of the set, using as a guide the values that Notman photographs had recently been selling for in Montreal. The first estimate came to $455 (including $264.50 for the photographs). In his summary letter, Mr. F.P. Rubidge presented the detai Read More
The Illustrated London News report also says that the Canadian Government employed Notman to prepare the photographs. The series of letters, however, reveals that it was Notman who conceived the idea and approached the government. Notman suggested the project to the Commissioner of Public Works, and thinking that he had full agreement for the project, proceeded to produce the set. However, the commissioner had only requested a proposal of what Notman contemplated doing and what the probable cost would be. So the set was produced without an agreement upon the price to be paid to Notman. When this misunderstanding was discovered, Notman wrote, “As I am desirous that HRH should be in possession of the series, [I] have no objections to place the matter entirely in your hands, accepting whatever sum you may award for my services. “ The government officials then arranged for an estimate of the value of the set, using as a guide the values that Notman photographs had recently been selling for in Montreal. The first estimate came to $455 (including $264.50 for the photographs). In his summary letter, Mr. F.P. Rubidge presented the details of his cost estimate as:

Making, therefore, a liberal allowance for the better mounting, and descriptions thereon, and supposing them to be the choicest and best selected specimens of Mr. Notman’s art, (although many of them are very defective) - I have put the following values, as the most liberal that should be offered for the collection.

10 sheets with 1 view on each or 10 photographs @ $6 - $60.00
13 sheets with 2 views on each, or 26 photographs @ $2.50 - $65.00
31 sheets with 9 Stereoscopic slides or 279 photographs @ $0.50 - $139.50
With reference to the value of the Morocco portfolios, I merely offer an opinion, that their (together) - $60.00
Also that the value of the case, silver mounted - $125.00
Packing Case, packing etc. - $5.50
Total - $455.00

© The McCord Museum of Canadian History, 2005. All rights reserved.

William Notman

William Notman, photographer, Montreal, QC, 1862

William Notman
Purchase from Associated Screen News Ltd.
1862
Silver salts on paper mounted on paper - Albumen process
8.5 x 5.6 cm
I-4498.1
© McCord Museum


Due to the misunderstanding, and in order not to hold up the presentation of the set, Notman had agreed to accept whatever money was awarded to him. However, he did object to the low value assigned to his photographs:

I may state that even now with the negatives in my possession, I would not get up another set the same, with the care & trouble of mounting, lettering etc. for less than double the amt. of the value now awarded me, & when I state that many of the views were taken with more regard to the completeness of the set than marketable value, & that in Quebec alone I spent more than the sum named, you will see that my acceptance of that sum will entail a considerable pecuniary loss, & hope therefore the valuation will be reconsidered.

However, the value was not reconsidered, and even though Notman claimed to have spent over $2200 to produce two copies of the set, one of which he retained, it seems that he only received $264.50. Mr. Hendery, the silversmith, also objected to the value of $125 for the case, which included only $100 for the silver work. This led to a second evaluation ($295.30) and the Read More
Due to the misunderstanding, and in order not to hold up the presentation of the set, Notman had agreed to accept whatever money was awarded to him. However, he did object to the low value assigned to his photographs:

I may state that even now with the negatives in my possession, I would not get up another set the same, with the care & trouble of mounting, lettering etc. for less than double the amt. of the value now awarded me, & when I state that many of the views were taken with more regard to the completeness of the set than marketable value, & that in Quebec alone I spent more than the sum named, you will see that my acceptance of that sum will entail a considerable pecuniary loss, & hope therefore the valuation will be reconsidered.

However, the value was not reconsidered, and even though Notman claimed to have spent over $2200 to produce two copies of the set, one of which he retained, it seems that he only received $264.50. Mr. Hendery, the silversmith, also objected to the value of $125 for the case, which included only $100 for the silver work. This led to a second evaluation ($295.30) and then a third evaluation ($463.50), which evidently agreed with Hendery’s original claim. The last letter of this series, in which the higher value for the silver work was finally set, was concluded with the statement “I sincerely trust that we have now heard the last of the vexed question of the case and its belongings.” It is unfortunate that William Notman suffered financially in producing the “Maple Box”, as this set is referred to at the McCord Museum. It is a fine collection of early photographs of Canada and is certainly the ultimate in stereo boxed sets.

© The McCord Museum of Canadian History, 2005. All rights reserved.

Robert Hendery Silversmith and Jeweller

Robert Hendery Silversmith and Jeweller

John Henry Walker
1850 - 1860
Ink on paper - Wood engraving
7 x 21.2 cm
M991X.5.342
© McCord Museum


Saguenay and Rivière-du-Loup

Groupe de stéréogrammes provenant de la boîte d'érable, Saguenay et Rivière-du-Loup, QC, 1859-60

William Notman
Gift of Mr. James Geoffrey Notman
1859 - 1860
Silver salts on paper mounted on card - Albumen process
52 x 72 cm
N-0000.193.87-95
© McCord Museum


Victoria Bridge, Montreal

Piers, looking out from centre, Victoria Bridge, Montreal, QC, 1858

William Notman
Gift of Mr. James Geoffrey Notman
1858
Silver salts on paper mounted on card - Albumen process
18 x 24 cm
N-0000.193.129
© McCord Museum


Learning Objectives

The learner will:
  • Define the lifestyle of people in Canada before and after Confederation;
  • Identify the consequences of urbanization and industrialization on the occupied territory;
  • Explain the outline and the actors of the Confederation;
  • Explain the development of technology, brought be industrialization.

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