Life Model slides

A type of lantern slide peculiar to Britain, was the 'life model'.
Instead of drawings being used to tell a story, actors were photographed with suitable props, usually in front of painted backdrops or very occasionally on location.

These slides could be bought as black and white lantern slides or more desirably and more expensively hand coloured.

The epitome of Victorian sentimentality and melodrama, more often than not the stories had a strong moral, religious or temperance theme, with titles such as "The Gin Fiend" "A Drunkard yet a Man" "Jessie's Last Request" and "A Guardian Angel"

They were intended not only to entertain but also to educate the public 'against the evils of the demon drink' by organisations such as The Salvation Army, The Band of Hope and The Church Army.

They were also a popular feature of many a Sunday School.

Today it is hard to imagine the extent and popularity of these Lantern Shows.

Publishers would send copies of books or songs

Slide 4 of the York & Sons set ' Gates of the West' based on the poem by A.Procter, that inspired Arthur Sullivan's 'The Lost Chord' which was often sung to accompany this set

to the lantern slide manufacturer in the hope they would choose to make a set of slides based on them, as this would increase sales, in the same way that a T.V. or film adaptation or the appearance of a music video on M.T.V. does now.

Of the many producers of Life Model slides, the two most prolific were Bamforths, of Holmfirth, Yorkshire and York & Sons, of London.