Saturday, September 15, 2018

Charles W Parker

Parker C W
140 Sparks st Ottawa

Charles William Parker
(1864? to 7 Jan 1898)

1864 (tentative)
New York, NY, according to the US census of 1880 and the Canadian census of 1891, Charles W Parker was born this year
Chicago, IL, city directory as photographer (no studio listed), res 380 n Wells (Note, if the birth date is correct, Parker would be only 5 years old this year so this is probably one of the other photographers named Charles Parker)
Bay City, MI, city directory as photographer at Griswold Block n Water; res same; (probably another Charles W Parker)
1883, 1884, 1886, 1887
Bay City, MI, city directory as photographer at 811 Water; res same
1881, 1882, 1883
Ottawa, ON, city directory NO CW or Charles W or Chas Parker listed

1885, 1886
Ottawa, ON, city directory Chas Parker as clerk for C A Ry, bds 405 Rideau
City directory for Bay City, MI, and Ottawa, ON, are not available; C W Parker NOT found in Columbus, OH, city directory
1888 Aug 03
Ottawa (ON) Journal small display ad says C W Parker is operator for C B Taggart studio “Late of Columbus, Ohio” (Note: No C W Parker could be found in the Columbus, OH, city directory for those years preceding 1888.)
1889, 1890
Bay City, MI, city directory NOT listed
1887, 1889
Ontario Business Directory and Gazetteer p1550, WILLIAM Parker as photographer in Windsor, ON (probably not connected to Charles William Parker.)
Ottawa, ON, city directory as artist for C B Taggart; bds Royal Exchange

1890 Jun through Dec
Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen small display ad runs over 100 times
1890 Sep 26
Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen news profile describes Parker Gallery but gives no address
Ottawa, On, city directory, Canada census, as photographer at 140 Sparks; bds Royal Exchange
1892 Mar 11
Ottawa (ON) Journal news item says Parker and other local photographers meet to fix prices
1893 Jan 24
Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen news item says Parker, photographer is ill
Ottawa, On, city directory as photographer at 140 Sparks; res 77 Victoria
1894 Feb 22
Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen news item list wife and newborn, res 77 Victoria st

1895 Sep 03
Ottawa (ON) Journal news item says Parker took a group photograph of No 8 Company
1896 Sep 05
Ottawa (ON) Journal news item says Parker, wife and family are staying at the Von Charles
1896, 1897
Ottawa, On, city directory as photographer at 140 Sparks; 1897 res pages missing
Ottawa (ON) Journal, news item says C W Parker read a paper on retouching to the Camera Club
Ottawa, ON, city directory Charles W Parker NOT listed, widow not listed
1898 Jan 07
Ottawa (ON) Citizen news item says Charles Parker of Ottawa has left for North Bay, Canada where he will be joined by C W Parker, his brother.
1899 Jul 25
Ottawa (ON) Journal news item describes journey back to Toronto from Yukon

1899 Aug 08
Ottawa (ON) Citizen, news item says Charles W Parker has died from effects of Klondike hardships, Scurvy; article ways he was only 35.
1899 Aug 08
Ottawa (ON) Journal news item about death of Charles W Parker
Charles W Parker’s biography is pretty thin. It doesn’t help that he apparently had a brother named C W Parker. There was also a tug boat and a fishing boat by that name.

It appears fairly certain that Charles W Parker was a photographer at 140 Sparks st in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, from 1891 to 1898.

And before that a Charles Parker was apparently a photographer in Bay City, MI, 1869 to 1890 but it cannot be confirmed that it is the same as the Parker in Ottawa. Maybe it was his brother. It has not been established yet what profession his brother followed. If it was also photography, then some of the locations could be one or the other or both. Many documents just list C W Parker.

Some news items seem to conflict with other information sources. The newspapers indicate that Charles W Parker closed his Ottawa gallery and moved to Toronto. Further news stories tell of his expedition to the Klondike with his brother C W Parker, contracting scurvy, returning to his Toronto home and dying in August of 1899.

The Toronto city directories do not support this. There are two Charles W Parker’s listed from 1896 through 1900, as clerks, one for a drug company and the other for the GTR railroad. Are these the two brothers or two entirely different Parkers?

Also, between 1882 and 1901 city directories show a Charles Parker as photographer in New York, New Jersey, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Washington D C as well as Ottawa. They are not all the same person.

The only positive location for photographer C W Parker is 140 Sparks st in Ottawa, ON. He was apparently there from 1891 through 1896. Other locations cannot be confirmed.

Ottawa (ON) Journal - 03 Aug 1888

Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen - 12 Jun 1890

Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen - 26 Sep 1890

Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen - 01 Nov 1890

Ottawa (ON) Journal - 11 Mar 1892

Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen - 24 Jan 1893

Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen - 23 Feb 1894

Ottawa (ON) Journal - 03 Sep 1895

Ottawa (ON) Journal - 05 Aug 1896

Ottawa (ON) Journal - 10 Apr 1897

Ottawa (ON) Journal - 23 Apr 1897

Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen - 07 Jan 1898

photographer Parker
140 Sparks, Ottawa, ON
Example from
Ottawa (ON) Journal - 25 Jul 1899

Ottawa (ON) Daily Citizen - 08 Aug 1899

Ottawa (ON) Journal - 08 Aug 1899

Marriage Announcement for son Charles V Parker - 21 Apr 1923

Not the one you were looking for?
Here's the photographer's INDEX by name. Listed here are all the Cabinet Card photographers of the 19th century found in LOST GALLERY. This is a work in progress. For a look at the original postings go to

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