Siamese Scenes
A Personal Collection of old photographs of Siam
Queen Savang

"The Prince of Siam"
is in fact a photo of
the young Queen Savang Vadhana

I never meant to collect photographs of sceneries, or groups of unknown people. It started with photos of important people and their autographs. That was my main interest - Presentation Photographs, first with original presentation cases, but then just autograph photos as well. Then I learnt about famous photographers of the past, who took portraits of the royalties and aristocracies, that they took pictures of the different sceneries as well. Names like John Tomson, J. Antonio and of course, Francis Chit, the first Siamese professional photographer who was given the title of Luang Akani Naruemitr. So I inevitably expanded my collection. The biggest acquisition was from Bonhams in Knightsbridge, London. I happened to be in London at the time, and learnt that there was going to be an auction of a set of old photographs of Siam, and on closer inspection, I noticed a photograph labeled "The Prince of Siam", but I knew that that was not a prince, but a Queen! I had to get it...just this picture, even though I had to get the whole set to get just the one. The other photographs caught my attention too, as they are of a time gone by. It is interesting to note how calm things looked back then, and simple as well as elaborate. A photograph is a capture of a second in time. Once the button has been pressed, and photograph captured, those people moved on, and carried on with their lives. Sometimes, it is just fascinating to imagine the movement that would happen after a particular picture was taken.

So, here they are. Sharing them with those who are interested is probably the best. There are so many books out there already. I hope you enjoy them.

Set of photographs from the Bonham, Knightsbridge Auction
The Grand Palace The Grand Palace The Grand Palace The Grand Palace
Above are photos of The Grand Palace during King Chulalongkorn's reign - circa 1890s
Dance Troop Soldiers Soldiers Wat Po
A Traditional Dance Troop Soldiers Soldiers Wat Po

Will slowly put more photos up over this month and next month. Thank you for visiting!


31 May 2020