Carte de visite dated 1865. The text in the scroll reads 'Nil desperandum auspice deo', which translates as 'when God is on our side there is no cause for despair'.
Mortimer Alexander Adolphus Timpson was born at Brambridge, Twyford. His unmarried mother was a servant in the house of Mortimer Timpson, a Major in the Marines who served at the Battle of Trafalgar. Mortimer Adolphus' mother had 3 children with widower Major Timpson, and married him after the birth of Mortimer Adolphus.
The census of 1841 and 1851 recorded Mortimer Adolphus in Winchester with his parents and siblings. Mortimer Timpson senior died in 1851 without leaving a will, and his second wife and the children of that marriage were not provided for.
At the time of the 1861 census Mortimer Adolphus worked as a post office clerk, and lived with his mother and one of his sisters at 11 Mount Place, Southampton. The carte de visite above was dated 1865 at the time it was taken. The studio address was Commercial Road, but the electoral roll for 1865 listed Mortimer Adolphus Timson living at Mount Place.
In 1866 Timpson married Annie Gardiner in Basingstoke and moved away from Southampton. In 1869 the London Gazette reported that photographer Mortimer Adolphus Timpson was bankrupt. The article listed 3 studios in the City of London, and another in Andover.
By the time of the 1871 census Timpson was back in business as a photographer living at Cross Street, Basingstoke. He advertised as a photographer in the 1878 Post Office Directory as a photographer at Sarum Hill, Basingstoke. Timpson was recorded as a photographer at Sarum Hill in 1881, 1891 and 1901. He died in Windsor in 1904.