'Fenton's Photographs', 1855.
© NMeM / Royal Photographic Society / Science & Society Picture Library
Cover of an album of photographs of the Crimean War by Roger Fenton (1819-1869). With his assistant Marcus Sparling and a mobile darkroom, a converted wine merchant's van, Fenton took 360 photographs of camp life, portraits and landscapes during the Crimean War (1854-1856). A dispute over religious sites in the Holy Land grew into a major European war with the allied forces of Ottoman Turkey, Britain, France and Sardinia invading southern Russia. The war bogged down into a lengthy siege of the port of Sebastopol, which fell in 1855. Roger Fenton was a founding member of the Royal Photographic Society and one of the most influential photographers of the 1850s. He is best known as one of the first war photographers, from his work in the Crimea in 1855.