Created 30-Jan-13
Modified 30-Jan-13
34 photos
A selection of Clarence Eugene Lemunyon's color(ized) work from Beijing and environs, about 1906-. C.E. Lemunyon (Chinese name: 雷尼诺恩) was born in Manchester Center, Ontario County, New York, on the 4th of July, 1860. He passed away in Peking, China, on April 21, 1929. The cause of death as determined by Dr. T. H. Chow from the Peking Union Medical College was empyema. He was buried on April 24, 1929 in the Medical College Cemetary, outside of Ch'i Hua Men. His sister, Mrs. Fred Stephenson (maiden name: Jeannette Lemunyon), of Phelps, NY, inquired about disenterring her brother's remains and reburying him on home soil, but further research is required to confirm if this - with a quoted pricetag of $761 very costly - plan was carried out.

In an affidavit (to Overcome Presumption of Expatriation, dated Feb.25, 1918) C.E. Lemunyon states that he left Great Falls, Montana (where he acted as a photographer with the Great Northern Railway) in October or November 1897; that he resided henceforth in Honolulu, Hawaii; Manila, Philippines; Vladivostok, Siberia; and that he arrived in Peking, China, on April 12th, 1906 (from Hong Kong, where he had worked as a photographer since 1902). In the same affidavit, Lemunyon states that "I am the proprietor of the Emporium, a photographic art store, on Hatamen Street, Peking." Taking other (anecdotal) evidence into consideration, it is probably a fair assumption that his main location of residency and photographic activity was Peking between 1906 and the date of his demise in 1929.

He died poor, btw., his outstanding liabilities outweighing his assets by a ratio of 10:1. Lemunyon was married to one Minnie Jaeger Lemunyon. The marriage lastet all but six months, and ended with Minnie Jaeger filing a petition for judicial separation in a Shanghai court on October 20, 1910. Mrs. Jaeger returned to Germany and passed away some years later. From what I can glimpse from the records at hand, Lemunyon remarried (the year is unclear), as the State Department's consular records from 1929 name a certain Georgiana Lemunyon, "to be the legal wife of the deceased and to be his sole devisee."

The data above constitute a rough biographical sketch of Lemunyon. He was a rather prolific photographer whose work is just beginning to be explored and appreciated. This introductory gallery may help in that endevor.

All images courtesy Mr. Norman Hodgson, CA. Additional images can be seen at

Thomas H. Hahn
Ithaca, NY