My post on the Darwin photo was picked up by Nick at the Panda’s Thumb. Yesterday, I contacted Kevin Repp, Curator of Modern European Books and Manuscripts at the Beinecke and I received this reply today:
Many thanks for your query. As it turns out, the photo in question is indeed of Mr. Princep. How it came to be cataloged as one of Darwin is a mystery. The inscription business makes it all the more curious. In any case, I have alerted our digital library cataloging staff, and the record will be corrected promptly. Thanks again for pointing this out to us.
Mystery solved … well sort of. We still don’t know about the inscription.
Princep was a British civil servant in India and was married to the photographer’s sister. See here (which reproduces an 1865 photo that is clearly from the same sitting).