By Jo Wood, School Archivist
Bay has once again revealed some intriguing and unique school artefacts.
View of Truro from the Terrace – 1910
The first is a stereograph by an American firm, Underwood & Underwood Publishers, who created thousands of images for the late 19th century craze for 3D photographs. The two photographs would have been seen through a special viewer which would make it appear to be a single 3D image.
Truro, centre of Cornwall’s mining country; N.W. from College Terrace
The stereograph shows the view across Truro from the terrace in front of the school c.1910 (with the newly completed cathedral spires) and in the foreground is the headmaster Herbert W. Vinter (1890-1921) and a lady who is probably his sister Emily. This is the first image of her in the archive so there is nothing to compare it to at the moment; she helped with admin work and gave music and typing lessons while her brother was headmaster. The only other candidate for the lady is Emma Opie, the school matron, but no images of her survive either to compare it to.
The stereograph’s interpositive is held by the Smithsonian Institute, National Museum of American History.
Inkstand – 1908
The other find is a rather unimposing, well-used inkstand. It has two red velvet lined square holders for ink bottles and two drawers, one of which still has the remains of wax welded onto it. The exciting thing is that it has an inscription on a brass plate which reads: The headmaster Herbert Vinter’s birthday was 26 March.
Further research, via the school magazine for April 1908, shows that the headmaster’s birthday that year was marked with a half-holiday, an evening entertainment in the Schoolroom and a special supper. The headmaster was presented with ‘a handsome Inkstand and Clock “with birthday greetings from the boys of Truro College”.’
There are fixing holes and oval marks where the clock once stood on top of the inkstand.
If you have any items of interest from Truro School’s history, you can get in touch with Jo Wood on firstname.lastname@example.org
Read more about the archive here.