Tileston, Randall & Co.

1859                50 Main Street, Evansville, Indiana.

Tileston, Randall & Co. (William W. Tileston, Charles M. Tileston and J. D. Randall) were recorded in five announcements in The Evansville Daily Journal (Evansville, Indiana).  The first announcement appeared on September 6, 1859.  Sun Beam Gallery.—Messrs. Tileston, Randall & Co., will open their new Sun Beam Gallery, No. 50, Main street, this evening easly gas light with a soiree.  Their friends and the public generally are invited to call and examine their suit of rooms for practicing the photographic art.

The second announcement appeared on September 8, 1859.  Messrs. Tileston, Randall & Co., Daguerreotypist, opened their handsome new Gallery, on Main street, on Tuesday evening, and entertained a pleasant and numerous company of ladies and gentlemen, who passed the evening in agreeable conversation, and examining the beautiful specimens of the art with which the rooms are adorned.  The gallery will be open every evening, and it will be found a pleasant place of resort for an hour.  The combined experience and talent of the three gentlemen will enable this company to produce the finest pictures in every department of the daguerreotyping and photographic art.

The third announcement appeared on September 21, 1859.  Persons wishing good Ambrotypes, Melainotypes, or Photographs, will bear in mind that the place to get them is at Tileston, Rondall & Co.s new Sun Beam Gallery, No. 50, Main street.  Their pictures possess beauty and delicacy of detail, combined with a rotundity rarely seen in Photographic expressions.  Remember that their gallery is kept open every evening until nine o’clock.  Call and examine their pictures by gas light.

The fourth announcement appeared on September 24, 1859.  The New Art Gallery.—Evansville, both at home and abroad, is noted for her commercial and manufacturing advantages; and truly in this respect she has not been underrated; but while steamers plough our waters, canal barges traverse our rich valleys, and railroads bear in their daily burdens, and all pour their rich stores into our lap of commerce; and although our forges and foundries and mills and factories ring with the hum of machinery and the song of labor, yet our people have not altogether forgotten to mingle the beautiful with the useful, in building up the fair fame of our city.

The growing taste of our people is evinced by the number and order of arrangement of our public libraries and cabinets; the improvements in architecture; the embellishment of public halls, saloons, business houses, churches, and private dwellings; the adornment of grounds; the advancement in music, and the polite modes and habits of our society.  And among the many other improvements in popular taste, none is more perceptible just now than the pleasure and satisfaction everywhere expressed at the recent fitting up by the Messrs. Tileston, Randall & Co., of their new Gallery of Art on Main Street.

Readers, have you yet visited the new rooms of these accomplished artists?  It is well worth a visit by the lovers of taste and the beautiful.  The main stairway entrance from the street is broad and inviting to the ascent.  It is open at all hours of the day, and till nine o’clock at night, and is then brilliantly lighted up with beautiful gas fixtures.  Arrived upon the second floor, you are ushered into an elegant apartment which combines the purpose of a saloon, sitting-room, and gallery of art.  Here you register your name in a book conveniently arranged for that purpose, rest awhile, if you like, on the comfortable sofas, and then look around at the pictures upon the walls.  From the floor to the ceiling is hung an endless variety of portraits, life-size photographs in oil, colored photographs, ambrotypes, sun pictures, stereoscopic views, groups, scenes, landscapes, and every style and variety of pictures known to the art.

After you have, of course, selected from the center table a case in which to have your own pleasant features mapped out, you pull a tasseled cord which hangs by the second stairway and the tinkling of a little silver bell above brings down one of the smiling young men, who usher you up into the chief operating room.  This chamber is forty feet long, by twenty in width, and is lighted by an immense sky light, in the center, over head.  The cameras and screens are so arranged, as that two sets of operators can work at the same time with equal effect, and the screens can be extended in any way on slides and hinges, so as to admit of a group of almost any size being taken, with a back ground of over twenty feet in width.

Before sitting for your picture, you step into a beautiful little alcove, fitted up in one corner, and modestly (!) drawing together the tasteful curtains, you find yourself before a large mirror, with all the other toilet paraphernalia, and you soon make yourself “good looking” enough to be “taken off” without breaking the camera lens.  The impression, with the “delightful expression” is done in a moment, and while your friends, the tall and affable Dan, and the sprightly and skillful Tileston Bros., are perfecting your ugliness in the dark room, you have time to look at the general arrangement.  At one end of the chamber is a large shop or working room, for doing the mechanical work of the establishment, and adjoining this is the dark room, fitted up with every possible permanent arrangement.

At the other end is a room, with large windows opening out to admit the sunlight, for photographic purposes.  Several smaller apartments adjoin, with “no admittance” marked over the entrance, into which, however, you will be “admitted” if you are good-looking, patronizing, and have an uncontrollable desire to poke your nose into all the mysteries of the art.  Your picture, by this time is ready; you are satisfied with it, pay for it, and descend into the lower gallery, where you take a card from a fanciful ocean shell-case on the center table, and descend to the street, wondering why everybody don’t visit Tileston, Randall & Co., Picture Gallery, and resolving to tell your friends so.  In short you are satisfied, after a visit, as we are, that this Gallery will hereafter not only afford pleasure and profit to our own people, but, that strangers, happening in the city, will visit these rooms, along with the other exhibitions of public taste and pleasure which adorn the flourishing city of Evansville.

The fifth announcement appeared on October 17, 1859, Vol. XII, No. 53, P. 1.

List of Premiums Awarded at the South-Western Indiana District Fair… Class No. 12—Art. 

Tileston, Randall & Co., of Vanderburgh, [County] best collection colored photographs, 1st premium, 5,00 and diploma.

Tileston, Randall & Co., of Vanderburgh, [County] best ambrotype and sun pictures, 1st premium, 5 00 and diploma.

Tileston, Randall & Co. are not recorded are being in partnership in other photographic directories.  William W. & Charles M. Tileston and J. D Randall are all three recorded in other photographic directories and William W. & Charles M. Tileston were previously posted on May 26 as the Tileston Brothers.

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