Many people will have seen postcards with the initials CP in the bottom left or right hand corner. Charles Pearson was a photographer who lived in Burnham for a while and produced postcards of this area and also towns and villages nearby.
The census of 1911 mentions him as living at 17 Cross Street. He was born in Sheffield in 1868 and married in 1897 a Sheffield girl, Bertha (nee Thorpe), who was born in 1870. They had a daughter, Gwendoline, born in 1897. By 1901 Charles is listed as an engraver of silver near Sheffield. The family moved to Burnham in 1909 when Gwendoline was aged 9. (Thanks to John Page for research).
He appears in the Kelley’s Trade Directories for the town from 1915 through to 1935 at the Cross Street address. It is thought that his wife may have continued the business in his place during the war. In “Somerset Photographers 1839 – 1939” published by The Somerset and Dorset Family History Society she is mentioned as the business holder for 1915 and Charles as holder from 1919 to 1935 . Gwendoline died aged 18 and Bertha dies in 1936 aged 67. The National Register of 1939 shows Charles as retired and living with a family in Burnham Road.
It is said that Charles used to cycle all over the region to obtain photographs.
Below are two of Charles’ images showing the fire at what was Hurley’s store between Technical Street and Lower South Street.
He also took many portrait photographs at his Cross St studio.
Charles was an enthusiastic cricketer, joining the local YMCA team within a few months of his arrival in Burnham and subsequently playing for Burnham Amateurs and Burnham First XI & Second XI until well into his 60’s.
If you can add more information about his man or have images of his you are willing to share please get in touch.