The library have been vigorously added these photographic gems to their Historypin page. Butler's ‘snap-shots’ as he referred to them, depict everyday life in the 1880s and 1890s and show both both formal and unposed images. He also photographed tourist destinations which have remained popular including Pompeii, the Eiffel Tower and the Leaning Tower of Pisa
|Ref: Historypin ap showing Butler's travels, St John's College Library, Cambridge Historypin Channel page|
Butler lived in the south of England but travelled extensively throughout Europe, particularly in Italy. There is also a New Zealand connection since Butler spent 4½ years in the country during the 1860s. He arrived into Lytellton on 27 January 1860 and traversed much of the South Island looking for unclaimed land for sheep farming. He discovered and and crossed the Whitcombe Pass on 3 February 1861, during a series of expeditions above the Rangitata with John Holland Baker.
|Ref: AWNS-19350515-44-1, Sir George Grey Special Collections|
Butler left New Zealand on 15 June 1864. One reason for his rather sudden departure may have been the rejection by Mary Brittan, to whom he is rumoured to have proposed in 1864. Mary went on to marry William Rolleston in 1865.
Find our more about the Samuel Butler digitisation project and check out the Auckland Libraries heritage materials which are written by or about Butler.