Herbert Joseph Earle


Woodman in Hungers Lane, Petworth (possibly a reprint of a Kevis card)

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Tobacconist, Lombard Street, Petworth. Earle acquired his business in 1907 or early 1908 from Walter Kevis, who was married to his aunt, Emma Kevis, formerly Earle. He continued trading at Lombard Street until his death in 1951. For a decade or more he issued greyish-sepia real photographic cards of Petworth (e.g. "Petworth House" and "Petworth Church") with "Published by H. Earle, Petworth" stamped in ink on the back. Many of these real photographic cards were reprints of earlier Kevis cards. Some have narrow white borders around the photographs; others have only a basal border or entirely lack borders. Some cards have numbers but this is not universal. The highest number noted so far is 92 ("Gog View, Petworth").

Earle was born at Seend in Wiltshire in 1874. He was the fourth child of Joseph Earle, a carpenter and joiner, who was born in the village in about 1845, and Sarah Earle, from Chapmanslade in Wiltshire, who was about two years older than her husband. The family lived in the High Street. Sarah had one more child, but died in 1879, perhaps because of complications following the birth.

By 1891 Earle had left school and was working as a steward-room boy at Wilton House near Salisbury. Despite much searching he has not been located in the 1901 census. On March 18, 1908, at the Parish Church of Upton cum Chalvey in Buckinghamshire he married Rose Annie Ayres, three years his senior, who was living in the High Street in nearby Slough. He returned with Rose to Petworth where he had already taken over the Lombard Street business of Walter Kevis. Emma Kevis, Walter's wife, was a daughter of Maurice Earle, a brother of Herbert Joseph Earle's father, Joseph, and a fellow carpenter in Seend.

Earle died in hospital in Chichester on August 10, 1951, and was survived by Rose. He left effects of £5646.

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