Harry F. Stains
Frank H. Stains
Franklin H. Stains


HARRY F. STAINS, or rather Frank H. Stains, which is the name he was born with and was using when he passed away was born in Pennsylvania in September of 1863 to Henry T. Stains and his wife, the former Hannah Jenkins Stevens. His father was a marble cutter, his mother was a minister's daughter. A photographer by trade, Frank Stains is noteworthy as a resident of Camden as he was the owner of the Harry F. Staines Company, of 2220-2222 Federal Street, which and sold colored glass slides called Spot Light Slides in the late 1900s and early 1910s. The projectors that were used to show them were made by the Levi Company, Inc, 1560 Broadway, N.Y.C, N.Y.

Frank H. Stains grew up in Three Springs Borough, in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania. Four sisters were born before he was, Alpharetta, Mary, Janetta, and Irene. They all apparently were born before 1860.

Henry T. Stains, served during the Civil War with as a Corporal in Company B, 110th Pennsylvania Infantry, enlisting in 1861. After completeing his term of service he went home, only to re-enlist as a private in Company K, 202nd Pennsylvania Infantry in September of 1864.  He mustered out with his regiment at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania after the war had ended, then returned to his wife and children.

The 1870 Census shows Frank Stains living at home with his parents, and sisters Alpharetta, 17; Mary, 9; and and a younger sister, Alberta, 2. By 1880 Frank H. Stains was the only child at home, there was a grandson living there, Herbert, age 7. 

Sadly, Frank Stains mother Hannah passed away on October 7, 1881, She was buried in Three Springs. Henry T. Stains, who had served during the Civil War with Company B, 110th Pennsylvania Infantry, died on March 9, 1897 and was buried in Altoona, Pennsylvania.

By 1885 Frank Stains had trained as a photographer and had moved to Philadelphia. In 1885 ge advertised in the "Situations Wanted" section of the Philadelphia Photographer. His ad read as follows: 

In or near Philadelphia, as printer or operator. Address Frank H. Stains, 3538 Wharton Street, Philadelphia, Pa.

By the mid 1890s he was doing business as Harry F. Stains. He appears to have been pretty active socially and business-wise in the 1890s-1900s before coming over to Camden. In 1896 he was the "Noble Grand" of Quaker City Lodge 208, Odd Fellows, at Broad & Washington Streets in South Philadelphia. He married before the summer of 1896. His wife Annie B. bore at least one child, a son, Cameron F. Staines, on November 1, 1896.

The 1900 Census shows him as Henry F. Staines, living apart from his wife and son, at 713 North 41st Street in Philadelphia.

He remarried after the 1900 Census and not long afterwards moved to Camden with a new wife and his son Cameron. As Harry F. Stains, he appears in Camden City Directories beginning in 1903. 

The 1903 directory shows him and his wife Reva A. Stains at 59 South 24th Street. They stayed their through 1905. The 1904 Directory shows "Harry F. Stains Co photographers (Cameron F., Harry F., & R.A.)". As Cameron was only 7, one wonders if this was a joke on Harry Stains part or if there was an adult Cameron F. Stains. Research indicates the former.

The City Directories from 1907 through 1910 list Harry F. Stains at 45 
South 24th Street with his wife, Reva A. Stains. The 1910 Census also has him at 45 South 24th Street, with wife Reva A. and son Cameron, aged 13. Directories from 1910 to 1914 show him at 2220-22 Federal Street with wife, Reva A. Stains. During these years in Camden he became active with the Camden Lodge of Elks. In 1912 he was elected "Inner Guard" of the lodge.

Things seemed to have gone badly between Harry Stains and his wife. Directories from 1915 through 1917 do not list him at all. Reva and Cameron Stains however are both  listed back at 45 
South 24th Street.

Harry Stains reappears in Camden City Directories in the 1918-1919 edition, at 515 
Federal Street. The 1920 Census, taken in January of the year, also shows him at 515 Federal Street. The Census says he was married, his wife, however was not living at that address. Reva Stains (spelled Reba in this Census) was renting at 2220 Federal Street.

Harry Stains did remarry, possibly after the Census. The 1921 and 1922 City Directories show him at 422 Main Street, with his wife, Gertrude, who was born Ellen Gertrude Ramsey in Altoona, Pennsylvania. They appear once more in Camden directories, in 1926, at 1257 Morton Street.

By 1929, once again as Frank H. Stains, he had left Camden. The 1929 City Directory for Burlington, New Jersey show him as being retired and living at the Masonic nursing home in Burlington Township. His wife, Ellen Gertrude Stains, by this time was very ill, with tuberculosis and a bad heart, had gone to live with her family in Altoona. She died in October of 1929. The 1930 Census, taken in April of that year, shows Frank Stains still at Masonic Nursing Home in Burlington Township. He died there in 1932.

Son Cameron Staines married and lived in East Camden into the 1920s. He died in 
Atlantic County in 1980.

 Spot Light Slide (actual size)