The business started in 1870 when James Bamforth set up as a photographer. He moved into magic lantern slide production and, in 1899, film production. They began publishing postcards in 1903 or 1904. Bamforth & Co. became a limited company in 1910 and had offices in London and New York as well as Holmfirth.
The company specialised in comic and song postcards but also published lantern slides, greetings cards and calendars