Roger Fenton's Crimean War photographs represent one of the earliest systematic attempts to document a war through the medium of photography.  He was commissioned by the publisher Thomas Agnew at the insistence of Prince Albert.

Fenton, who spent less than four months in the Crimea (8 March to 26 June 1855), produced 360 large-format photographs under extremely trying conditions; he broke several ribs and suffered from cholera.

Due to the awkward size of his photographic equipment, Fenton was limited in his choice of motifs, and because of the long exposures required was only able to produce pictures of unmoving objects – mostly posed pictures. While these photographs document the participants and landscape of the war, there are no actual combat scenes, nor are there any scenes showing the devastating effects of war.

Stay in touch with Chatsworth

Newsletter sign-up

Never miss a thing. Stay up to date with our latest news, offers and events by entering your details below: