William Mortis Phillips' studio at 60 Oxford Street Southampton was open from 1883 to about 1898, after which time he worked from Mayfield Road, Portswood until he retired in the early 1900s.
The 1851 census recorded William Phillips, aged 2, in the Kings Cross area of London with his mother, baby sister and his father, (a saddle and harness maker). Later in the same year his sister died, and soon after his mother also died. At the time of the 1861 census William Phillips was at boarding school in Cheshunt, and his father was living with his 2 unmarried sisters in Drury Lane, Central London. In 1871 William Phillips lived in an unconventional household in Gerrard Street, Soho, with his widowed father, his father's unmarried sisters, and widowed brother. William gave his occupation as photographer.
Phillips married in the late 1870s and lived for a short time in Brighton before going into partnership with photographer Arthur Wyatt in Fareham. The 1881 census recorded William M Phillips and his wife and baby daughter, living with Arthur Wyatt and his wife, and a third photographer, Frederick Hallet (nephew of Wyatt).
In October 1883 the London Gazette carried an announcement that as of September 15th 1883 the partnership between Arthur Wyatt and William Mortis Phillips was dissolved, and from that time on the firm would continue to trade in Wyatt's name only. Phillips moved to Southampton and set up a studio at 60 Oxford Street, advertising in the Southampton directory for the first time in 1884.
Carte de visite 1890s
Phillip's wife Louisa died September 1st 1890 at 60 Oxford Street. The 1891 census recorded photographer William M Phillips, his eleven year old daughter, and a housekeeper at 60 Oxford Street. In 1898 Phillips married again and around this time the new family moved to Portswood. The 1901 census listed photographer William M Phillips in Mayfield Road, with his wife, his daughter from his first marriage, and a baby daughter born in Southampton in 1900.
Carte de visite 1890s
Postcard portrait early 1900s
Phillips' later portraits were produced as postcards rather than carte de visite and cabinet cards. He retired in the early 1900s and died in Southampton in 1930, aged 81.
A W.M Phillips postcard of 3 Denstone Terrace, Swaythling, can be seen on Southampton Memories:People and Places, via the link below.