Echard, W.C.


Northern Visitors on streets in Jacksonville, Fla. W.C. Echard’s Photo Gallery. Information supplied by Randy Atkins: “This view was taken at 17-1/2 West Bay Street. Attached is an 1876 ad for W.C. Echard’s gallery. After the Civil War, Echard came to the South from Virginia and worked as an itinerant tent photographer. Over the years he built his business and established several photography parlors, primarily in Mississippi and Alabama.

An interesting tidbit: Right next door you can make out part out the signage, “O.L. KE”, which was the location of Otis L. Keene’s dry goods store (17 West Bay Street). O.L. Keene was a longtime resident of Jacksonville. He was also a Unionist who fled the South during the Civil War. His diary recorded during that time is historically significant and easily available online. After the war, he returned to Jacksonville and figured prominently in local politics, as well as being a successful merchant when this picture was made. It would be very interesting to know if Mr. Keene was one of those posing in the group.”

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