Percy J. Swain


"Living Whist", Hastings & St Leonards Amusement Association (1909 postmark)

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Photographer, Hastings. Swain began publishing real photographic cards of Hastings by 1904. Pike's 1904 Hastings Directory and Kelly's 1905 Sussex Directory give his address as 37a White Rock. Unlisted in Pike's 1902 Hastings Directory, he presumably settled in the town either in 1902 or 1903. He remained in business for only two or three years. After Archibald Breach acquired his studio in 1905-6 Swain appears to have left Hastings.

Swain's cards have black and white photographs, some with and some without white borders. The captions where present are written in untidy capitals, seemingly directly on the negatives. The cards record pageants, processions and other social gatherings; no general views are known. A portrait card of a uniformed fireman posted in December 1904 has printed Christmas greetings from Mr & Mrs Edward H. Glenister of 34 Priory Avenue, Hastings. According to the 1901 census, Glenister was a manager and traveller for a wine and spirits firm. Presumably, he was also a volunteer fireman.

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