Foy Bros

Foy Bros
James Joseph Foy and Joseph Michael Foy

James Joseph Foy
James Joseph Foy, born 7 October 1844 (5), registered Dec 1844 East London vol. 2 page 206, son of James Foy (4), carpenter and Mary Ann Daniels, died 17 January 1890 at Pollen Street, Thames, aged 45 years (1), reg. 1890/318, buried 19 January 1890 plot 2300, Shortland Cemetery, Thames (5), married 7 June 1874, Parnell, Auckland, registered 1874/8710, Jane Brady, buried 24 May 1921, plot 2779, Shortland Cemetery, Thames aged 77 years (5).

Mary Jane Foy born 20 March 1875, reg. 1875/7695, date of death not found 
George James Foy born 27 June 1876, reg. 1876/15782, died 24 October 1908 Waihi    
Henry James Foy 19 October 1878, reg. 1878/15866 
Louisa Jane Foy born 27 December 1879 Thames, reg. 1880/689, died 28 April 1918 Thames Hospital aged 38 years, buried Shortland Cemetery, Thames, married 31 May 1910 Walter Marshall Langdon
Emily Philomene Foy born 1881 Thames, reg. 1881/6200, died 17 July 1958
Clara Ellen Foy born 1884, reg. 1884/15007, died 15 October 1959 Thames
Cecilia Foy born 1887, reg. 1887/14993, died 10 May 1950 Thames, buried plot 2780, Thames Cemetery  

Joseph Michael Foy 
Joseph Michael Foy, born circa 1847 London, England, registered Mar-June 1847 London vol. 2 page 181, son of James Foy, carpenter and Mary Ann Daniels, died 3 April 1923 at his residence 11 Nikau Street, Auckland, aged 76 years reg. 1923/3967, buried Waikumete Cemetery, Roman Catholic Division C, Row 19, Plot 132, married 1stly 18 October 1875, registered 1875/2526, Mary McMahon, she died 15 February 1877 at the residence of her parents, Onehunga, aged 21 years (3).

1. Nivard Joseph Foy (6) born 12 November 1876, reg. 1877/793, died 22 February 1877 at Onehunga aged 3½  months, birth name registered as Edward Joseph Foy.  

He married 2ndly 20 July 1879, St Francis Church, Shortland, registered 1879/1775, Maria Woods, died 17 November 1929 at her residence, 11 Nikau Street,  Mount Eden, Auckland aged 70 years, buried Waikumete Cemetery, Roman Catholic Division C, Row 19, Plot 132

2. Theresa Ellen Foy born 21 September 1881 Thames, reg. 1881/10966, died 17 July 1967 Auckland 
3. William Joseph Foy born 29 September 1883 Thames, reg. 1883/15207,
died 17 May 1908 Thames  
4. James Henry Foy born 15 February 1886 Thames, reg. 1886/1488,
died 6 December 1918 Moerewa, Northland
5. Alice May Foy born 13 March 1888 Thames, died 28 May 1932 Auckland, buried Waikumete Cemetery, Roman Catholic Division C, Row 19, Plot 132. 
6. John George Foy 16 May 1889 Thames, reg. 1889/4317,
died 4 July 1975 Auckland
7. Francis Joseph Foy born 25 August 1891 Thames, reg. 1891/12978,
died 30 June 1964 Auckland, buried Waikumete Cemetery, Roman Catholic Division C, Row 19, Plot 134
8. Joseph Michael Foy born 31 March 1894 Thames, reg. 1894/17540,
died 21 February 1917 France

Mr. J. M. Foy
The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District] 1902
New Zealand Electronic Text Centre

Pollen Street.
from February 1872

We have much pleasure in calling attention to the new photographic gallery now opened in Pollen street, by Messrs Foy Bros. We have seen some very excellent specimens of their art, and trust that they may receive a share of public patronage.
Thames Guardian and Mining Record, Volume I, Issue 108, 13 February 1872

Thames Guardian and Mining Record, Volume I, Issue 142, 23 March 1872
[this notice first appeared in the Thames Guardian and Mining Record about 13 February 1872]


We are pleased to learn that the fine arts will be found amongst the Thames exhibits at the Sydney Exhibition. The Rev. R. Laishley has determined to exhibit his splendid oil-painting, "The Finding of Rufus," and Messrs Foy Bros., the well-known artist photographers, have applied for 25 square feet of wall space for the exhibition of photographs of Thames scenery, and objects of interest.
Thames Star, Volume X, Issue 3200, 22 May 1879, Page 2

A lady correspondent of the Herald writing upon the Sydney Exhibition speaks of Foy Bros', photos:—A few photographs of New Zealand natives are shewn by Foy Brothers, of the Thames. The aboriginal women of New Zealand, unlike these of Australia, appear to have magnificent hair. The photos, in question shew two or three women with hair hanging down their backs in massive waves — very different from our wooly-pated squaws.

Whilst on the subject of New Zealand natives, mention may as well be made of a charming picture of a Maori girl. This cannot fail to excite the admiration of those who give it attention. The picture referred to is probably the one painted by the Rev. Mr Laishley, of this town.
Thames Star, Volume X, Issue 3366, 6 October 1879, Page 2

Thames Star, Volume X, Issue 3432, 22 December 1879, Page 3

Messrs Foy Bros, announce that the alterations to their photographic studio are now completed. At great expense the sitting room has been lengthened and relighted, both giving increased facilities to the operator, and comfort to the sitter. The largest sized lens can now be brought into work, and groups of half a dozen or more persons can be taken with ease. The arrangements will enable Messrs Foy Bros, to finish their pictures in the latest and most approved style of art.
Thames Star, Volume XI, Issue 3706, 10 November 1880, Page 2

Thames Star, Volume XI, Issue 3707, 11 November 1880, Page 3
(this notice first appeared in the Thames Star on 10 November 1880)

Messrs Foy Bros. have now on view at their shop a series of views of the Mountain of Te Aroha, the township, the Prospectors' Claim, and other places of note in that district. The views are worthy of inspection, and persons wishing to give friends at a distance, time idea of the appearance of the country cannot do better than purchase of the first views taken of the district, and now on sale at Foy Bros.' establishment.
Thames Star, Volume XI, Issue 3744, 24 December 1880, Page 2

A very pleasant hour may be passed at the establishment of Messrs Foy Bros., photographers, Pollen street, in inspecting the very large and well arranged collection of photographs. Within the last few months the proprietors have gone to a deal of expense, and their rooms are now the most complete and best arranged for photographic purposes in this province. By the way, the gallery is constructed so as photos can be taken in dull weather, and ladies and children especially are saved the inconvenience of having to wait for bright and warm days, and to attend at hours when it is not always the pleasantest to be away from home.

The newest mode of treatment of photos is now practiced by Messrs Foy Bros., and specimens of their enamelled work we have been equal to any turned out by the most celebrated photographic artists. Every convenience in the way of dressing rooms, and pleasant and comfortable waiting rooms have been provided and, as the work can be executed more expeditiously with the new facilities at command, there is little inconvenience suffered by visitors to the studio.

The enterprise shown by Messrs Foy Bros, is deserving of support, and we shall not be surprised if during this summer their exertions are rewarded by a liberal support from the residents of the Thames. There is not the slightest necessity for persons to go to Auckland to get photos, under the impression that pictures are taken better in that city, for we have heard of many being so displeased and disappointed with the work done in Auckland as to come to the Thames for well finished and good photos.
Thames Star, Volume XII, Issue 3770, 27 January 1881, Page 2

Messes Foy Bros., photographers, have lately imported a new process by which they can take instantaneous portraits. The process is known as the Gelatine Bromide, and for children's portraits is unsurpassed.
Thames Star, Volume XII, Issue 3946, 22 August 1881, Page 2

We are sorry to have to record an accident which occurred this morning to Mr J. J. Foy, of Foy Bros. It appears that at the fire which took place this morning in Sealey street, Mr Foy living close by, made haste to assist in pulling down some of the back structures to prevent the spread of the fire, when he slipped and doubled his foot under him in falling, sustaining a very severe sprain of the ankle, which will necessitate his laying up for some time.
Thames Star, Volume XIV, Issue 4551, 6 August 1883, Page 2

The many friends of Mr J. J. Foy will learn with regret of his death, which took place this afternoon. It appears that he has been in a weak state of health for some time past, and his death occurred very suddenly while in his photographic studio.
Thames Star, Volume XXII, Issue 6477, 17 January 1890, Page 2

In our last issue we briefly announced the sudden death of Mr. J. J. Foy, which took place about 2.30 or 3 o'clock yesterday afternoon. It appears that Mr Foy was in his studio engaged mounting some pictures, when he complained to his daughter that he felt faint, and a few minutes afterwards fell back into her arms. a messenger was at once dispatched for Dr Callan, but as he was not at home, Dr Volckman was summoned, but when he arrived life was extinct. It has been decided by the Coroner that an inquest is unnecessary, as Dr Callan, who had been attending the deceased lately, has given a certificate to the effect that death resulted from apoplexy. The deceased, who was 45 years of age, leaves a wife and family of seven children to mourn their loss. The funeral will take place from the residence, Sealey street, at 3 o'clock to-morrow afternoon, at which the members of the Loyal Charles Bruce and Loyal Waikato Lodges of Oddfellows are notified to be present.
Thames Star, Volume XXII, Issue 6478, 18 January 1890, Page 2

 Thames Star, Volume XXII, Issue 6479, 20 January 1890, Page 2


The many friends in Auckland and elsewhere of Mr James Joseph Foy, photographer, will learn with sincere feelings of regret of his decease, which took place on the 17th inst. somewhat suddenly. He had been in a weak state of health for some days, and while in his studio with his eldest daughter on Friday last, he complained to her that he did not feel well, and at once fell backwards in an apoplectic fit. Medical assistance was sent for, but he expired before the doctor arrived. The deceased, who was 45 years of age and leaves a wife and seven young children, was of a most genial disposition and was universally esteemed and respected. The funeral took place yesterday (Sunday), and was very largely attended by all classes of the community, while the members of the Loyal Waikato and Charles Bruce Lodges of Oddfellows were especially noticeable, there being scarcely a member absent.
Observer, Volume X, Issue 579, 1 February 1890, Page 12

Foy Bros.
The premises of the above named are our next place of call. A good many visitors were admiring the photographic work in the studio, a fresh set of pictures having been placed on  view. In the outside window on either side two splendid bromide enlargements attracted a good deal of attention, and that is a class of work certainly a credit to the establishment, which also takes a high place as regards the reproduction of family groups and as several such pictures were on view we had ample opportunity of comparison. We noticed, without in any way posing as an authority that these groups were all photographed with special attention to matters of detail, and the general effect is consequently very good.

Another branch of the art that  Mr Foy evidently takes great pride in is the shield work. He has reputation for his artistic productions under that head, and anyone, even the most critical, cannot but say he deserves the best words that can be said with regard thereto.

There is a splendid show just now of enamelled cabinets — full and three-quarter figures without doubt first-class work, and calculated to keep Messrs Foy Bros, to the point as skilled photographers. Their premises are roomy and in every  way convenient as our representative saw when conducted through, and there is every facility for the smart despatch of orders.

The firm are very busy just now, and will doubtless continue to be, as anything turned out of the establishment must give satisfaction.

Thames Advertiser, Volume XXVII, Issue 8312, 24 December 1895

Purchased Arthur James Iles negatives

Thames Advertiser, Volume XXVIII, Issue 8379, 16 March 1896


Messrs Foy Bros, Studio.
As we mentioned, in a brief paragraph, a day or two ago, Messrs Foy Bros, have made considerable additions and improvements to their well known photographic studio in Pollen street. Our representative paid a visit yesterday to the studio, and, after accepting the invitation of the proprietor — "Don't knock; walk straight in" — was shown through the premises by Mr J. M. Foy.

"In making the additions and alterations," said Mr Foy, "I have been guided by an experience lasting over a period of twenty eight years. My object has been to study the comfort of my customers, to enlarge the rooms in which my assistants are employed, so that they can work under more favorable conditions, and to enlarge the studio, so as to make it possible to photograph large groups, with the best possible results."

"And you appear to have succeeded remarkably well," our representative remarked. "The closest attention appears to have been paid even to the most apparently insignificant details."

Mr Foy explained that the work of carrying out the various improvements had occupied a considerable amount of time, and had not been decided upon without careful study. The waiting room has been enlarged, and is now a commodious apartment. The numerous glass cases, containing innumerable specimens of Mr Foy's work, afford a most pleasant means of passing the time to waiting clients. To the right of this, is a specially constructed enlarging room. On one side of the hall, is the workroom, in which the delicate work of retouching and mounting is performed. To the left is a large printing room, where enamelling is also done. At the end of the hall is a "dark" room, which is divided into two apartments, one of which it is intended to use for the storage of chemicals, &c.

Adjoining the ladies' workroom is a comfortable toilet-room, where customers can arrange the final details of their toilet before entering the studio.

The new studio is 21 feet in length by 18 feet in breadth. The studs are 10 feet high on the northern and 9 feet on the southern side; while the height, from the floor to the apex of the Λ shaped roof, is 16 feet, Abutting on to the new studio is a portion of the old, so that the two together give Mr Foy a total depth of 32 feet. It is well lighted with large glass windows and sky lights; while by an arrangement of large curtains it is possible to obtain as much or as little light as may be deemed necessary for the successful photographing of both large and small groups as well as of single individuals. There is a large assortment of artistic backgrounds, including one which extends the whole width of the room and is suitable for football or cricket clubs, or any other, large groups. The ventilation has been carefully attended to, and the general arrangement of the studio is in accordance with that recommended by the best Home authorities, modified to suit local requirements, which are thoroughly understood by Mr Foy who, at before stated, has the advantage of more than a quarter of a century's experience.

It is almost needless to state that there are innumerable appliances by which every possible variety of artistic work can be produced. Large and small cameras, lenses of all sizes, and all the accessories for both outside and inside work, are ready to the hand of the operator. Among the cameras is one recently obtained by Mr Foy by which negatives 15in by 12in can be taken. This is used for the production of direct portraits and groups.

The arrangements are most complete, and it speaks well for the faith in the future of the Thames goldfield when business men are found making extensive additions to their premises.

Mr Foy has now one of the best studios in the Auckland district, and his enterprise merits the most cordial support from the public, as he invariably produces high class work. We heartily wish him every success.

Thames Star, Volume XXX, Issue 9134, 30 July 1898 

Foy Bros. (Joseph Michael Foy), Photographers, Pollen Street, Thames. This is claimed to be the oldest business of its kind at the Thames, having been established in 1872. The studio is replete with all the latest improvements, and the proprietor is ever on the alert for anything fresh in his line. Many samples of his work are to be seen in the illustrations of this portion of the present volume of the Cyclopedia.

Mr. J. M. Foy was born in London in 1847, and came with his father, the late Mr. James Foy, to New Zealand in 1849. After leaving school he assisted his father in the building trade at Onehunga. In 1867 he entered the employ of Mr. Webster, photographer, of Auckland, and eighteen months later commenced business in that line on his own account. Mr. Foy joined his brother, Mr. James Joseph Foy, in 1872, in establishing the present business at the Thames. The latter died early in 1890, and since that date the subject of this notice has thrown all his time and energies into the improvement of the business. 

Mr. Foy has for many years been a member of the H.A.C.B.S., Grahams-town branch, and has filled various offices in that body, including those of president, vice-president, and secretary, the latter of which he has held for the past twelve years. He was elected in 1894 to represent the South Ward on the Thames Borough Council, and was re-elected in 1896, but is not now a member. On the death of Mr. Mulligan, one of the trustees of the Thames Hospital, in 1896, Mr. Foy was appointed to fill the vacancy, and, at the annual meeting of the subscribers to the Hospital in 1897, was unanimously elected to represent their interests on the Board.
The Cyclopedia of New Zealand [Auckland Provincial District] 1902
New Zealand Electronic Text Centre

Mr J. M. Foy, photographer (late of Thames) has opened at No. 4, Eden Terrace, Auckland. Negatives taken at Thames since 1896 in stock.
Thames Star, Volume XLV, Issue 10611, 22 December 1909, Page 3

An old identity of the Thames goldfield, Mr. Joseph M. Foy, died at Auckland on Monday, at the age of 76. Mr. Foy, who was born in London in 1847, came to New Zealand two years later. In 1872, in conjunction with his brother, Mr. J. J. Foy, he established the leading photography business at the Thames, which was carried on until after the decline of the mining prosperity of the district. Mr. Foy, among other positions formerly occupied by him, was a member of the Thames Borough Council and Hospital Board. For many years past he had made his home in Auckland.
Evening Post, Volume CV, Issue 82, 6 April 1923, Page 8

Mr. J. M. Foy.
An old identity of the Thames gold-field, Mr. Joseph M. Foy, passed away at Nikau Street, Eden Terrace, on Monday at the age of 76. Mr. Foy, who was born in London in 1847, came to New Zealand two years later.

After leaving school he assisted his father in the building trade at Onehunga, and at the age  of 20 [about 1867] entered the employ of a photographer. He shortly afterwards entered into business on his own account, and in 1872, in conjunction with his brother, Mr J. J. Foy, he established the leading photography business in the Thames, which was carried on until after the decline of the mining prosperity of the district.

Mr. Foy among other positions formerly occupied by him, was a member of the Thames Borough Council and Hospital Board. For many years past he had made his home in Auckland.

New Zealand Herald, Volume LX, Issue 18365, 4 April 1923

Mrs. J. M. Foy
A former well-known resident of Thames for many years, Mrs. Maria Foy died at Mount Eden on November 17, aged 70 years. She was the widow of the late Mr. Joseph Michael Foy, who was for a number of years a member of the firm of Foy Bros., photographers, at Thames.

The late Mr. Foy came to New Zealand with his parents in 1849, and learned the profession of photographer from Mr. Webster in Auckland. In 1872 he joined his brother, Mr. J. J. Foy, in a photographic business at Thames.

The funeral of Mrs. Foy took place to-day after a requiem mass at St. Benedict’s Church at nine o’clock. Thy interment was at Waikumete.

Thames Star, Volume LXIII, Issue 17745, 19 November 1929

James Foy
Mary Ann Foy died 24 March 1882 at her son's residence Sealey Street, Thames aged 77 years

James Foy died 1 May 1883 at his son's residence Sealey Street, Thames aged 80 years

Mr Foy, who joined the Royal Artillery (Foot) prior to the battle of Waterloo, has called upon us to bear his testimony to the excellence of the arrangements in a military point of view, made for the funeral of the late Robert Roycroft yesterday afternoon. Mr Foy, who from his experience is well able on testify to these sort of things, considers that the whole affair reflects great credit to the officers who managed the arrangements, and on the men for the imposing appearance they presented, and their steadiness and general efficiency.
Thames Star, Volume VII, Issue 2121, 21 October 1875

[purchased July 2023]

[purchased July 2023]

[purchased July 2023]

[purchased July 2023]

[purchased July 2023]

[purchased July 2023]


[purchased February 2023]


above cdv courtesy of The Laurence Eagle Collection

above cdv courtesy of The Laurence Eagle Collection

 above cdv courtesy of The Laurence Eagle Collection

(1) Thames Star, Volume XXII, Issue 6478, 18 January 1890, Page 2
(2) Evening Post, Volume CV, Issue 82, Friday 6 April 1923, Page 8 gives date of as Monday i.e. 2 April however Auckland City Libraries Photographers Database gives date of death as 3 April.
(3) Auckland Star, Volume VIII, Issue 2171, 17 February 1877, Page 2
James Foy died 1 May 1883 at the residence of his son, Sealey Street aged 80 years
Thames Coromandel District Council Cemetery Database.

(6) Rev. Nivard Jourdan was the Parish Priest at Thames, born near Turin, Piedmont, Italy, died at Chefoo, Province of Shantung, China 2 September 1882 aged 47 years. Thames Star, Volume XIII, Issue 4333, 20 November 1882.

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