Victoria Hotel

James Bragge (photographer)circa 1875

Te Papa

Te Papa
Wellington, New Zealand

The two-storied Victoria Hotel, on the main street of Petone, Lower Hutt, was clearly an impressive building for its time. The photographer, James Bragge, used exceptionally large wet-plate negatives, most measuring 10 x 12 inches (255 x 305 mm) and a few even larger, which enabled him to capture a great deal of fine detail we can zoom in on today. A notice by the hotel’s doorway offers a £100 reward for information on a murder; directly beneath it is evidence of the local canine population’s best territory-marking efforts. Hitching rings for horses are visible on the verandah posts, and the fine lines of telegraph wires cross the upper part of the hotel. Most people lean against some part of the building to help steady themselves during the long exposure. But close examination shows every single figure to have some part of their body blurred – most often their head.

- From New Zealand Photography Collected by Athol McCredie, Te Papa Press, 2015.


  • Title: Victoria Hotel
  • Creator: James Bragge (photographer)
  • Date Created: circa 1875
  • Location: Featherston
  • Physical Dimensions: Plate:
  • Provenance: Purchased 1955
  • Subject Keywords: Hotels, Guests, Balconies, Men, Porches, Gas street lamps, Children, Telecommunication lines, Featherston
  • Rights: No Known Copyright Restrictions
  • External Link: Te Papa Collections Online
  • Medium: collodion glass negative
  • Depicted Location: Featherston
  • Registration ID: D.000032

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