Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Kisch B fame grows: awards at Exhibition

Benjamin Kisch's fame as a photographer grew 
and he received several prestigious awards.

Tradeplate: Kisch Brothers, Photographers, Smith Street, Durban, opposite Durban Club.
From The Natal Almanac 1874

The first directory entry of Benjamin Kisch starting a photographic studio is in 1871. But other records show that Benjamin Kisch and a Henry Alexander Grant were in partnership as photographers in Durban by May 1867. By 1872, Benjamin and his brother Henry were working together, Henry being the more mobile partner, while Benjamin remained in Durban. Benjamin and Henry operated as partners until 1875 when Henry went to Pietermaritzburg and this remained his base until he returned to Durban some 10 years later.  By 1895 Henry was a photographer in Ladysmith. He took numerous photographs during the period of the Anglo-Boer War.

There is a deceased estate file in Pretoria Archives for Benjamin Kisch, dated 1889. According to the Natal Almanac, Benjamin was operating from a studio in Mercury Lane Durban from about 1884-1887. Why he died in the Transvaal (where the Death Notice was filed) is not certain. His wife continued to run the studio at Mercury Lane for about seven years, possibly in conjunction with Henry whose address is also given as Mercury Lane in 1888 but Henry's address changes in 1894 to 194 West St.

1885 Henry Kisch returned to Durban (from Pietermaritzburg). This would be during the time Benjamin's sight was starting to fail. 
1888 Henry’s address in Natal Almanac is given as Mercury Lane, Durban. That 
was the address of Benjamin's studio from at least 1881.
1889 Benjamin died - his wife took over the business, some help provided by 

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