Edward John Wall

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Edward John Wall (1860–1928) was one of the leading writers on the theory and practice of photography in the closing decades of the nineteenth century. His 1889 Dictionary of Photography became a standard reference work and ran to many editions worldwide. Although not published until 1925, his History of Three-Colour Photography was the first reflective look at that subject, drawing on material he had first published in the British Journal of Photography in the early 1900s. In the closing years of the 19th century he contributed a manual on carbon printing to Amateur Photographer magazine’s One Shilling Library series of books, but one of his most significant contributions to the practice of photography was his published 1907 suggestion for the technique which became known as bromoil printing. Wall himself did not fully articulate the mechanics of the process, but his initial suggestions as to how it might work were realised in a practical sense by C Welbourne Piper, who published a working process later that same year. Trained as a chemist, Wall initially worked for the plate manufacturers B. J. Edwards & Co. in London, before embarking on a career which embraced camera manufacture in the United States with the Blair Camera Company, journalism, photography, and motion pictures [1].