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28

Tibet—Younghusband Expedition | Group of 30 original photographs of Tibet and Sikkim, Henry Martin, c.1910

Margin Scheme

Estimate:

5,000 - 8,000 GBP

Tibet—Younghusband Expedition | Group of 30 original photographs of Tibet and Sikkim, Henry Martin, c.1910

Tibet—Younghusband Expedition | Group of 30 original photographs of Tibet and Sikkim, Henry Martin, c.1910

Estimate:

5,000 - 8,000 GBP

Lot sold:

5,670

GBP

Tibet—Younghusband Expedition

Group of 30 original photographs of Tibet and Sikkim by Henry Martin, circa. 1910


30 silver gelatin prints (each approximately 90 x 150mm.), each with a contemporary ink inscription on the reverse identifying the locations and some of the sitters, 27 with an additional separate typed caption, some captions dated, in archival sleeves, modern black clamshell box, excellent condition


Originally from London, Sergeant Henry Martin, served with Younghusband in Tibet in 1904 and remained there until 1931. After the original Expedition, he worked as a telegraphist in Gyanstse – and later, as Head Clerk of the British Trade Agent. This made him one of the two longest-serving Englishmen in Tibet during that period. He twice married Tibetan women, having two daughters, Alice and Maude, and one son (name unknown). In 1925, Martin was awarded the MBE. Martin was apparently well-regarded by his superiors and was tasked with photographing Tibetan notables, and the movements of Chinese Tibetan troops for the Foreign Office in London. He was provided with an ‘official camera’ for the purpose, and he soon learned to develop negatives and print his own photographs. He usually signed his negatives ‘H.M.’ in the lower right corner.


Gyantse features heavily in his images, as that was where Martin was largely stationed. Other locations are Yatung, Naini, Lingnatum Plain, Pharijong, Chorten, Tsechen, Chatso, Changu and Rungpo. Henry Martin later sold part of his father’s archive to David MacDonald [1870(?) – 1962], the local British Trade Agent, who was Scottish-Sikkimese. MacDonald features with his Ghurkha bodyguards in one of the photographs in this collection, and later wrote the book, The Land of the Lama (1929). One of MacDonald’s daughters donated the Martin / MacDonald archive to the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford. Of note, are some fine images of temples, masked lamas and a group portrait of a Chinese official surrounded by his entourage.


i) British Trade Agent [David MacDonald] and body of Ghurka Police, Yatung, Tibet

ii) H.E. Pass and Chinese escort, Yatung, Tibet

iii) View of city and jong, Gyantse, Tibet, 25-11-10

iv) Maharajah of Sikkim’s Palace, Gangtok, Sikkim

v) Nathula Pass, Tibet

vi) View of Gnatong, Sikkim. 25-11-10

vii) View of Tsechen, Tibet

viii) View of Naini, Tibet

ix) Chorten, Near Naini Tibet

x) View of Yatung, Tibet

xi) Chinese troops on the march, Gyantse, Tibet

xii) Lingmatam Plain Tibet. 25-11-10

xiii) Masked lamas at Naini, Tibet

xiv) Masked lamas at Naini, Tibet

xv) View from the Changlo. Gyantse, Tibet

xvi) View of Gyantse, Tibet. 25-11-10

xvii) Chatso Monastery near Pharijong, Tibet

xviii) B.T.A. [British Trade Agent] giving alms on the day of the King’s Funeral, Yatung, Tibet

xix) Interior view of Gyantse City

xx) Interior view of Gyantse City

xxi) Chinese shrine, Yatung, Tibet

xxii) Chumalhari 24,000 ft, Pharijong, Tibet

xxiii) Palkhor Choyde, Gyantse, Tibet

xxiv) Group of Lepchas, Rungpo, Sikkim. 12-12-10

xxv) Mountain Range, Changu, Sikkim

xxvi) Waterfall, Changu, Sikkim

xxvii) Idols in monastery, Gyantse, Tibet

xxviii) Idols in monastery, Gyantse, Tibet

xxix) B.T.A. [British Trade Agent] Residency, Gyantse, Tibet. 25-11-10

xxx) View of Gyantse City, Tibet. 11-11-10


PROVENANCE:

From collection of J. Coomber (see separate contemporary ownership inscription).

Condition is described in the main body of the cataloguing, where appropriate


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