Free

Talk 3: Salt-Pork and Daguerreotypes: Unpacking Evidence from 1848. Dave St...

Event Information

Share this event

Date and Time

Location

Location

St Marks Church Kennington

337 Kennington Park Road

London

SE11 4PW

United Kingdom

View Map

Event description

Description

William Kilburn’s famous Daguerrotype of the Great Chartist Rally of 10th April 1848 is thought to be the world’s first photograph of a mass protest. But what can it tell us about the crowd itself? How large was the crowd? What was the social mix? What time of day was it taken? Was it the first example of surveillance or just a bit of well-timed photojournalism? We will also consider the camera location and take a short look at some of the individuals in the crowd and allow ourselves to imagine what their lives were like and what brought them to Kennington that day.

The talk will look at the contents of a National Archives box containing provisioning orders for troops guarding London that day. This provides evidence of the extent of military preparation for the event. These official figures will then be compared with calculations of the size of the crowd in the photograph, to show that the demonstrators were vastly outnumbered.

Was the Government justified in their repressive clampdown on the Chartists or was this simply paranoia brought on by the revolutionary wave of political upheavals throughout Europe that year? I will argue that the spring of 1848 marked a turning point in the political struggle for suffrage and led some Chartists to question the policy of moral rather than physical force.

Following Dave Steele's presentation we will open up discussion, lead by Katrina Navickas, on 'Where next for the Kennington Chartist Project?' discussing potential new lines of enquiry and research that may have been thrown up by the series of talks - and information on how to gain access to archives.

Dave Steele is a mature PhD Candidate at the University of Warwick
Research Title: The Crowd in Britain 1780-1850
http://warwick.ac.uk/davesteele

Katrina Navickas researches the history of popular protest and democracy movements, local identities and landscapes. Her latest book is "Protest and the Politics of Space and Place, 1789-1848" and she is currently writing a history of contested public spaces in Britain.

Share with friends

Date and Time

Location

St Marks Church Kennington

337 Kennington Park Road

London

SE11 4PW

United Kingdom

View Map

Save This Event

Event Saved