Portrait Painter and Widely Respected Photographer
Dr. Clarage H. “Charles” Kingsmore, a professional photographer and portrait painter, was born in 1823 in Savannah, Georgia. In 1858 he went into business with Richard Wearn in Newberry South Carolina. Their gallery, Kingsmore & Wearn was located above the W.H. Hunt & Company Store. After Wearn left Newberry in 1859, Kingsmore continued to operate the gallery. For two months in late 1860, W.A. Cooper worked in the gallery with Kingsmore. Throughout 1860 and early 1861, he advertised his services as both a photographer producing daguerreotypes and ambrotypes and a portrait painter. In 1861 he painted the banner of the Rhett Guard.
Although he was not a classicly trained portraitist, he received numerous prestigious commissions. In 1858, Kingsmore was commissioned to paint a portrait of South Carolina’s 68th Governor William Henry Gist.
Kingsmore’s work can be found in many public and private collections, including the University of South Carolina Archives, Columbia, South Carolina. He was a featured photographer in “Partners with the Sun: South Carolina Photographers, 1840-1940,” a of which is included in the DAC Foundation Archives. Kingsmore passed away on May 14, 1873, in Augusta, Georgia.
Sources: “Partners with the Sun: South Carolina Photographers 1840-1940,” Ancestry.com