Harry Francis Goodden


Crowds gathered at Worthing Town Hall

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Portrait and landscape photographer, St Mary's Lodge, Park Road, Worthing. According to Geoffrey Godden (Collecting picture postcards, 1996, Phillimore, Chichester), Goodden worked as a photographer in Tunbridge Wells in the early 1900s. On account of his wife's ill health, he moved to Worthing by November 1910, but left during the First World War.

While at Worthing, Goodden published small numbers of real photographic cards, which are hand stamped on the back "H. F. Goodden, Park Road, Worthing". The initials are often smeared and easily misread. The photographs are normally black and white, without borders. The cards generally lack captions, which is frustrating when they depict special events. The noteworthy but captionless card shown above may depict Worthing's celebration of the Coronation of King George V in June 1911. A crowd has gathered in front of the old Town Hall watching soldiers present arms.

Goodden's entry in the 1911 census confirms his Worthing address and describes him as a postcard publisher and photographer. Judging from his smalll output of cards, he did not take his work too seriously, and the suspicion must be that he enjoyed private means. Born in 1855 or 1856 in Oxford, he was the same age as his wife, Margaret Goodden (formerly Gould), who had been born in Jersey and to whom he had been married for 34 years. The couple had two daughters living with them: Eleanor Mabel Goodden, born in Pembroke in 1886 and Kathleen Goodden, born in County Cork in about 1898.

Goodden and his family have not been located in the 1901 census, which may mean that they were living in Eire. The 1891 census gives their address as 17 Main Street, Pembroke (Pembroke Dock). Goodden is once again described as a photographer. In addition to Mabel, he and Margaret had a daughter, Edith Jane Goodden, born in 1883, and two sons: Arthur Moore Goodden, born in 1885, and Frank Widenham Goodden, born in 1889.

Goodden died at Dorchester in 1938, aged 82.

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