FOR more than 50 years Tyneside photographer Gladstone Adams built up a pictorial record of life in the North East.
His achievements include inventing the windscreen wiper, acting as Newcastle United’s official photographer from the 1920s-50s and, in the First World War when serving with the Royal Flying Corps, organising the funeral of the German fighter pilot ace Baron Manfred von Richtofen – the legendary Red Baron.
Gladstone, whose studio was in Station Road, Whitley Bay, served as president of the Association of Professional Photographers and it is his picture archive which is one of his greatest legacies.
He is best remembered for his dramatic image of the Tyne-built liner Mauretania as she left the river in 1907 to begin her illustrious career, but he covered everything from the Dickensian appearance of Newcastle streets at the turn of the last century to shots of rural Northumberland and the packed seafront of his home town in the 1950s.
On Wednesday his studio collection and personal effects are to be auctioned in Newcastle by Anderson & Garland.
The auction, on behalf of his daughter--in-law, will include equipment, photographs, postcards, glass and celluloid negatives, First World War and Newcastle United memorabilia, and even the photographer’s top hat and gramophone with 101 records.
The Journal has been given access to the photographic treasure trove.
It includes aerial views of the First World War battlefields and a series of aerial shots – marked “secret” – of parts of the North East coast which were taken in 1917.
There is a rare photograph of a young-looking Hughie Gallacher, Newcastle United’s celebrated centre-forward, as part of a run of postcard images of players which Gladstone produced for the club.
He also recorded many scenes around Rothbury, including the Three Wheat Heads pub in Thropton more than 50 years ago.
Gladstone was born in 1880 in St Anne’s Row in Newcastle – commemorated by a city council plaque – and died in 1966.
He was one of a family of 10 children and attended Gosforth Academy.
After surviving typhoid at the age of 16, he was apprenticed to Tynemouth photographer William Auty, and opened his own studio in 1904.