John Beasley Greene

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John Beasley Greene, also John Beasly Greene, (1832 Le Havre, France – to 1856 Cairo, Egypt) was an Egyptologist and one of the earliest archaeological documentary photographers.


The son of an American banker, Greene was born in Le Havre and then lived in at 10 rue de la Grange Bateliere in the 9th arrondissement of Paris.

His work combined two passions: the new technology of photography and the discovery of Ancient Egypt. After his father's death in 1850, Greene was able to finance his first trip to Egypt in 1854.

He was a founding member of the Société française de photographie, founded on 15 November 1854.

In Algeria in late 1855 and early 1856 he photographed his excavation campaigns of the Royal Mausoleum of Mauretania led by Louis-Adrien Berbrugger.[1]

He left Egypt shortly afterwards and died of tuberculosis in Cairo at the age of 24.


  • Fouilles Executées à Thèbes dans l'année 1855
  • Photographes en Algérie au XIXe siècle. Paris
  • Le Nil : monuments, paysages, explorations photographiques, Lille, Imprimerie photographique de Blanquart-Évrard, 1854.



  1. ^ Dondin-Payre (Monique) – Les fouilles du tombeau de la Chrétienne au XIXe siècle. In Comptes-rendus des séances de l’Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres. Année 2003 vol. 147.

External references[edit]

  • James Hyman--Fine Art and Photographs, biography of John Beasley Greene
  • Kathleen Stewart Howe; Santa Barbara Museum of Art (1994). Excursions along the Nile: the photographic discovery of ancient Egypt. Santa Barbara Museum of Art. ISBN 978-0-89951-089-7.
  • (in French) Greene on the website of the BNF.