The Holmes Brothers business was established in 1896 by C.H. and H. Holmes as Wholesale manufacturers and Patentees of high class photographic apparatus. Holmes brothers had it beginnings as the Leather, Sadler & Holmes company starting in 1878 where they sold glass for wet plate photographers. In September 1896, the photographic News reported that J.J. Sadler retired from the business to settle down in Leeds and to pursue another business, which initiated the name chug and start of the business operating as Holmes Brothers. The Holmes brothers firm was located at 24 Southall St. Manchester.
The Holmes Brothers are most recognized for their manufacturing of the Sanderson camera. The Sanderson was one of the most popular british made cameras made beginning in 1895. The camera was designed by F. Herbert Sanderson. Sanderson was born in Cambridge in 1856, he worked as a cabinet maker and wood and stone carver. Working as a photograph and finding difficulty in photographing architectural subjects, he designed a suitable camera for his purposes, the Universal Swing Front which is the basis of the Sanderson camera. He died in July 1929.
In March of 1904 several companies merged with Houghton's Limited. With a capital of 175,000 pounds in 10 pound shares. Houghtons acquired and amalgamated the business of (1) George Houghton and Son's limited, manufacturers of and dealers in photographic apparatus and appliances, (2) The business of Joseph Levi and Co. wholesale opticians and dealers in photographic apparatus and appliances, (3) the business of the Spratt brothers, manufacturers of photographic, scientific and other apparatus and appliances, the business of Holmes Brothers, manufacturers of photographic apparatus and appliances, and (5) the business of Alfred Charles Jackson, manufacturer and vendor of photographic apparatus and appliances.
1896, September; The Photographic News, p. 591
1898 British Journal Almanac, p.404
1904, March 19; The Pharmaceutical Journal, page 19.
1908 Photographic News, p. 303
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