'Looking Downstream: Part of The River At Low Water...', c 1861.
© National Media Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A photograph of sailing ships moored on the River Nene, in Wisbech, by Samuel Smith in about September, 1861. Smith probably took this photograph as part of a series used to illustrate engineer Thomas Page's report on the development of the Nene Valley. The full title reads 'Looking Downstream: Part of The River At Low Water Which Will Form A Portion Of Proposed Dock'. Smith was a successful timber merchant who moved to Wisbech in Cambridgeshire in the late 1840s when he retired from business. He took up photography in the early 1850s and used his camera and the paper negative process to systematically record Wisbech during a period of dramatic growth and change.