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James Valentine

Publishing Business

1815 Birth of James Valentine.
1851 James Valentine adds portrait photography to his business.
1855 Large photographic glasshouses built.
1860s Topographical Views of Scotland produced.

Photos: 4"x3",  8"x6",  12"x8" sold individually or in albums.  Also stereo views.


8"x6" was Cabinet size.  These sold for one shilling (0.05) each.

12"x8" was Imperial size.  These sold for two shillings 0.10) each.

Valentines also sold albums with photographs paseted in, at prices ranging from 2 Gns (2.20) to 5 Gns (5.25).

1879 James died.

Succeeded by sons William Dobson (1844-1907) + George Dobson (1852-1890).

1884 George emigrates to New Zealand
 -  After concentrating on portrait studio work, George emigrated to New Zealand in ill health.  There he became a landscape photographer, leaving William to take control of the landscape business in Dundee.
1886 William running the business - now employing 100 workers.
1897 Began to produce postcards - now employing 1,000 workers.
1907 Employing 40 artists for retouching views.

Many items were added to or removed from Valentine's postcard views.

1923 Overseas Branches sold.
1929 Portrait side of the business sold.
1937 Expansion.  New factory built at Kingsway, Dundee.
1950s Greetings Card business becoming more important than postcards.
1963 Taken over by Waddington & Co Ltd..
1967 Last monochrome postcards published.
1971 Archive of Valentine's monochrome views passed to St Andrew's University.
1980 Sold to Hallmark Cards Inc.
1994 Valentine's Dundee factory closed.


1.  Booklet: 'University of St Andrews Valentine Collection'  [published by St Andrew's University Library]

2.  Article ' Scraps & Stereos' by Roddy Simpson, published in The Scots Magazine  (July 2003, pp.88-92) - for the prices charged for Valentine's photographs in the 1860s.


Valentine's Overseas Photography





Albumen Prints

James Valentine

G D Valentine




Holyrood from Calton Hill

Holyrood Chapel


Postcard Views

Stereo Views







Rock House

Stereo Views

Books and Souvenirs

Books and Booklets

Other items