Ever Young at 80 – Mr James Aflah Barnor
By Ade Sawyerr, London
As a young boy growing up in James Town (British Accra), there was a particular route that I took to church every Sunday with my older brother and sisters. From Bruce Road we would take a left turn at Commodore Street into St. Edmund’s Street, past Mantse Agbona and into the High street and then past the famous James Fort, the Ussher Fort and then the Old Kingsway Store till we arrived at the Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity.
There were three photographic studios along the route; “Ever Young” studio on St. Emund’s Street and the Deo Gratis studio just off the High street; and just before you get to the Ussher Fort there was Mr, Darku’s studio on the left (you have to look for it before you notice that small studio!). I refer to these photographic studios because when you are in your Sunday best that is when you are likely to have your photographs taken.
I had completely forgotten about the “Ever young” studio till I came into this country because as I graduated from satin tunic shirts and shorts, through short suits, and then to full suits, I sort of remembered the many more photographs that my parents had demanded that we take during the important ‘events’ when we really dressed for church were mostly at Deo Gratis Studios. I have however recently understood why this was so and why I was more in tune with Deo Gratia than with “Ever Young”. I must say however that over the past 10 years this has changed considerably and the reason for that change is that I have had the privilege of meeting the proprietor of “Ever Young” and doubly honoured to consider him as a friend.