Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sentimental Sunday - Women with Hats - Stylish Carbondale, PA Woman

I particularly like this cabinet photo of a woman from Carbondale, PA not just because it's more uncommon to see people in formal photographs wearing outerwear, but because I love the back of the photo.  This woman, who was most likely photographed in the 1880's, is wearing a very fitted coat, most likely wool, with what appears to be velvet trim at the edges of the sleeves, on the pockets and down the front placket.  There is also some sort of decorative clasp at the neck.  She is most probably wearing her hair in a bun under her hat which appears to be made of velvet and feathers.  Very stylish!

The back of the card is quite entertaining with birds and a little frog riding an old-fashioned bicycle across the bottom.  I had no luck finding any information on the photographer, Cramer who was located at 312 Main St. in Carbondale.

Sepia Saturday #114 - Shoes - I've Got Nothing! or Wait, Maybe I Do!

I suggested shoes?  What was I thinking?  It's been a busy week at work and every time I would think about this week's theme at Sepia Saturday and get time to go through my picture stash I came up empty handed.  I thought I was going to have to throw in the towel.  Then I remembered this wonderful print I bought at an art show about twenty-five years ago called "Electric Hightops" featuring a pair of plugged in turquoise Converse.  Guess what?  It's missing!  Not hanging on my walls, not in the closet, not under the bed, it just seems to have walked away (parden the pun).  I paid quite a bit of money for the picture and it is gone, gone, gone!  I've wasted more time looking for that darn thing this week that I could used working on this post. 

I went back and looked through my pictures and found these two young girls and I noticed something different. Almost every vintage picture you see of girls (and boys) they are wearing laced up boots.  These two are both wearing what appear to be slip on heels, kind of like today's low-heeled pumps.  I don't think I've seen these anywhere else before.  I'm hoping someone else can identify the style. Both girls appear to be between ten to twelve years wearing dresses with lace as well as jewelry such as necklaces and bracelets.   The photographer of the first is Baker & Potter of Columbus, O. and and this photo was probably taken around the late 1880's. The photographer of the second photo was Isaac West Taber of San Francisco.  Taber was in business in San Francisco between about 1873 and 1906 when his gallery was destroyed by the San Francisco earthquake and fire.  I estimate this photo to be around the late 1880's or early 1890's.

Back to present day, I have had a love/hate relationship with shoes most of my life beginning with this photograph taken when I was about 19 months old.  I believe the shoes in this photo are what you would call Mary Janes.  I was quite cute don't you think?  Except I wanted those shoes off because I have always had claustrophobic feet!  Present day, working in offices, I have worn high heels most of my adult life,  beautiful shoes, many shoes, closets full of shoes.  However, in my early thirties I began developing the dreaded bunions, especially in my left foot.  Arghhh!  Wasn't this what old ladies got?  At some point I finally gave in and had surgery to correct the problem.  I could never understand how this happened to me at such an early age until I was told that this was most likely hereditary. I later learned that my paternal grandfather, Howard Wilson had this same surgery in 1937 at age twenty-eight.  He had his surgery in the doctor's office with only local anesthesia and they put a sock in his mouth - literally!    After my surgery I changed my ways and began wearing more comfortable flat shoes.  In 2007 I took a "work from home" job with my company at the time.  This became my work shoe  of choice:   Ahhhh......

After being laid off in March 2010 after fourteen years,  I took it easy for awhile.  In January 2011 I started a new job and was back to wearing closed in shoes with heels.  Within one month I developed a stress fracture in my left foot.  Diagnosis - wear flat shoes!  I gave up and am back to comfortable shoes. No more high heels for me, but every time I see ads in the paper for beautiful shoes or am out shopping and see a shoe display my heart rate increases, but then I remember, that oh yeah, I can't wear those nice shoes.   I have OLD LADY FEET!!!

As I sit here and write this post in my bare feet I encourage you to step on over to Sepia Saturday to see more stories on "Shoes."

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Beautiful (Ontario?) Bride

Unknown bride, possibly from Ontario, Canada.  On the lower right hand side it appears to say "DeLaFranirr."  I Googled this and found a mention of a Charles DeLaFranier, Photographer in Tavistock, Ontario around 1903.  No further information found.

**UPDATE:  There was a Charles Delafranier in the 1901 Canada Census, District of Perth, City of Stratford, Ontario.  He was 38 years old, born 1 Nov 1862 in Ontario, French Canadian, Occupation Carpenter, married to Ellen.  They had four children at the time, Mary E. age 12, Peter A. age 19, Joseph N. age 7, William A. age 5 and Lawrence age 3.  I found a burial record at the Avondale Cemetery, St. Patrick Section in the City of Stratford for a Charles E. DeLaFranier interment date 12 July 1933.

Another mention was found on the website of "Photographers of Ontario" listing a Charles DeLaFranier born Nov 1, 196? in business Nov 1903 in Stratford.  According to an ad which was placed in a local newspaper at the time Mr. DeLafranier of Stratford who recently sold his business has opened the Tavistock Photo Studio taking over the unoccupied photo studio in town.  He was offering $3.50 photos for $2.50 for thirty days.*


Monday, February 20, 2012

Wild Bill Hickok Meets Two Young Girls from Springfield, MO?

As usual I started to just post a picture and it turned into a project.  This is a picture of two young girls taken between 1864 and 1866 in Springfield, MO by Charles W. Scholten. His studio was located at the South Side of Public Square in Springfield.  The back of the photo has the three cent Civil War revenue stamp.

I found a Charles Scholten on in 1863 age 24, residence Campbell Missouri and occupation artist.  This was a Civil War draft record. I also found a Charles Scholten in the 1880 Springfield, Mo census, age 41 occupation saloon keeper, married to Clara, three children Rosa E, age 14, Henry age 10 and Neva age 8.

I found this interesting tidbit in an article documenting Scholten photographing Wild Bill Hickok  about September 1865 according to an article written by George Ward Nichols for Harper's New Monthly Magazine. "Hickok and another former army scout Dave Tutt had just been in a classic western shootout on the public square leaving Tutt shot through the heart" as is retold by Donna A. Beardsley, "Two Resource Materials for Teaching about the Old West."  Nichols arrived on the scene on Army business and documented the story which other newspaper sensationalized adding to Wild Bill's notoriety.

Beardsly goes on to quote from an 1867 Atchison, Kansas, Champion article in which she mentions the photographer Charles Scholten, " Few, though, would recognize him as being the person described by Nichols, except that Hickok was a "dead shot" and that he was a quiet person but dangerous is provoked"  Also from Beardsly's article, "The editor of the Springfield Patriot added that the full-length illustration of Hickok on page one was an accurate reproduction of one of Charles W. Scholten's photographs of "Wild Bill."  Hickok had had several photographs taken at Scholten's Photographic Palace of Art in Springfield."

Mystery Monday - Girl from Spencer, Mass - Who is She?

Yesterday I posted in my ongoing "Women with Hats" category a post about a young woman from Spencer, MA which I dated between 1895 and 1900. Today I am posting the second of two photos taken on the same day of my unidentified subject.  E. L. Jaynes who had a studio in Spencer between 1873 and at least 1920, was the photographer of this mystery girl.  The cabinet card from yesterday had plain rounded edges - today's card although nearly idential front and back, has beveled edges with gold gilt.  Obviously these pictures were taken on the same day; she is wearing the same dress, jewelry, her hair is the same minus the hat.  She is posed from the side in this shot and if you look closely you can see her long hair in a bun at the base of her neck.

Yesterday I talked about my trouble dating the photo, but I had decided it was between 1895 - 1900.  According to  "an analysis of nearly 200 cabinet cards from 1885 to 1900 showed about 50% were beveled and 50% were straight cut with the largest concentration of beveled card from the late 1880's."  Beveled edges were most popular between 1885 - 1895.  Her dress with the very short sleeves is what is giving me the most trouble in dating the photo, that is something I have not seen much but I have dated these cards around 1895 possibly to 1900.  I welcome any information to the contrary.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sentimental Sunday - Women with Hats - Girl from Spencer, Mass

This lovely young lady with dark, curly hair is wearing a beautiful lacy dress and what appears to be a matching lace hat.  She also is wearing a choker necklace with pendant.  She has a very serene and contemplative expression on her face. There is nothing on either side of this cabinet card to identify her, but the photographer is E. L. Jaynes of Spencer, Mass. who had a very long and illustrious career in Spencer.   According to the back of the card, Jayne's studio was located at Comins & Ames's block, Main Street in Spencer. Dating this card has been difficult for me; E. L. practiced in Spencer between 1873 and 1920 and this card I at first believed  to have been done around 1885.  However, I have never seen a woman wearing such short sleeves in that time period.  I now believe this to be between the years 1895- 1900, tomorrow I will share why I think this to be true.  If anyone knows something that would point to a more definite date I would gladly appreciate the information.

E. L. Jaynes was Edward Lyman Jaynes born in Massachusetts in October 1842 to Lyman James (1814 - 1902) and Harriet Towne Janes (1821 - 1895).  It appears at some point E. L. changed the spelling of his last name adding the "y".  On 9 Aug 1862 at Sturbridge, MA he enlisted as a Private in the Civil War for the State of Massachusetts, listing his occupation as farmer.  He mustered out on 14 Oct 1862.  

According to the book, "Leading Businessmen of Spencer, Brookfield and Vicinity" published in 1889 by Mercantile Publishing he set up his photography business in Spencer sometime around 1873.  Also per the  book he was very succcessful at his profession and his work "decidedly superior to two-thirds of the work turned out in City Studios."  His studio was burned out in 1887 and he relocated to his then location on Comins & Ames - Main Street.  

In 1879 Edward married Inez McNeil, most likely in Spencer.  According to the 1900 Spencer, Worcester, MA census she was the mother of four children, three living, Florence I. aged 18, Emily M. aged 7 and Irene E. aged 2. With the large age gap between Florence and Emily most likely the fourth child was born and died between the two.  I found Edward and Inez in every census in Spencer up to 1930 at which time he was 88 years old.   He practiced his art until at least 1920 when he listed his occupation as photographer in the 1920 census.  His death is reported on  in 1937 at age 95 in Worcester County, MA, but I could not find any documentation to back this up.  Regardless he lived a long and productive life.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Sepia Saturday #113 - Vaudeville & The County Fair

Edmund Burroughs 1901 - 1903
You ever have a photo and you're sure you know right where it is but then can't find it?  Well, I looked all over for this one, spent over an hour looking on my computer because I was sure I'd scanned it.  Then I looked for another hour in my hard copies before I finally found it.  This is my only claim to an actor for this week's theme at Sepia Saturday. Whew!  I was getting a little desperate, I don't think my Mr. Edmund Burroughs seen here was a film actor but he will have to do.  He sure looks mighty impressive though!

The back of this large cabinet card which measures 10 3/4 by 5 3/4 says "Edmund Burroughs as "Tim the Tamer" with Neil Burgess, County Fair Co - 1901-02-03."  The photographer was J. B. Wilson, 389 State St. Chicago.

When I first read this I assumed he performed at a real county fair.  My research on Edmund Burroughs has unearthed that this was actually the New York stage production of Neil Burgess.   The story is about a elderly woman Auntie Abigail Prue who is in danger of losing her farm because she cannot make her mortgage payments.  She enters her horse, Cold Molasses at the county fair and wins $3000.

I found very little information on Edmund,  however more information was forthcoming on Neil Burgess.   Once I began researching I found a wonderful story.  Born J. W. Knell,  he was an well-known actor, playwright, Vaudevillian comedian and female impersonator who specialized in elderly "widders" as in Abigail Prue. According to Frankie Jaxon in "The History of Drag and the Art of Female Impersonation" "his success brought him popular adulation, critical respect, and unprecedented wealth as the highest paid actor, comic or tragic, of the time--all for cross-dressing and female impersonation."

He was also quite an inventor. He used his plays to showcase his inventions of patented advances in treadmill and panorama stage machinery according to Kimberly Poppiti in her article "Galloping Horses: Treadmills and Other Theatre Appliances in Hippodramas.  "The County Fair" which was written by Charles Barnard for Burgess included a staged horserace scene that used Burgess's invention which allowed the horses to run at full speed on stage.  This same device was used with great profit for Burgess and his partner Barnard when it was used in the chariot race scenes in Ben Hur.   "The County Fair" first opened in the fall of 1888 probably in Philadelphia.  It began a long run in New York City in 1889 being reviewed by the New York Times twice during the opening week.  For more information on Neil Burgess, his plays and his patented inventions, see Poppiti's page at

3 Aug 1901 The NY Dramatic Mirror

Burgess was born from different acounts either 1846, 1849 or 1851 in Boston, Massachusetts. Around 1900 he was living in  Monmouth County, New Jersey with his wife Mary Stoddard, an actress from a family of distinguished and wealthy actors, who he married in 1882, and his son Neil Jr. aged 7.  Neil and Mary owned a large estate on Navesink Avenue in Highlands, NJ. According to reports Mary died in 1905 and Burgess was brokenhearted.  As stated by Jaxon,  "tragedy sucked the comedy out of Neil Burgess." Bad investments and poor health further demoralized Burgess.   He returned to his profession for awhile, but died in 1910.  He and Mary are buried at All Saints Memorial Church Cemetery in Navesink, Monmouth County, NJ. Click here to view his headstone which atop sits a wonderful bust of him (Find-A-Grave).

14 Sep 1901 The NY Dramatic Mirror

Neil Burgess

**UPDATE:  After a comment from Linda at The Paper Collector about Neil's wife Mary, I went back and looked at the Find-A-Grave stone and realized her name is spelled "Stoddart" not Stoddard as is mentioned on the other sites I credited.  That is not unusual in itself as people often changed the spelling of their names.  I did another Google search and found this mention that Mary E. Stoddart (who was married to Neil Burgess) was the niece of J.H. Stoddart, (James Henry 1827 - 1907) who was from Yorkshire, England and made his American debut in 1854.  This information is from the webpage "E J Phillips 1830 - 1904 People Family and Theatrical Colleagues."  This author has created an extraordinary collection of data on people and places in the early theatre years.

Sources:  Wikipedia, eNotes, Find-A-Grave, The NY Dramatic Mirror, Kimberly Poppiti, "Galloping Horses: Treadmills and Other Theatre Appliances in Hippodramas, Frankie Jaxon, "The History of Drag and the Art of Female Impersonation,, Google Books

Monday, February 13, 2012

1909 Valentine - Pierrot Clown

Pierrot Clown Boy and Dancer

Card Sent to Roy Whiteside, San Jose, CA on Feb 13, 1909

Mystery Monday - Mystery Man From Chicago

This cabinet card photograph of a very handsome and distinguished, but unidentified man from Chicago was taken at Gehrig Studios, 337 West Madison St.  He is wearing a suit and a heavy outer coat while holding an umbrella and gloves and he looks quite prosperous.  I am dating this photograph between 1888 and 1894.  I had several clues including the beveled edges with gilt on the card as well as the photographer's attractive, cursive imprint at the bottom of the card.  The biggest clue however is the photographer's mark at the bottom that says "Place's Extra Finish." These imprints were used during this time period.

Gehrig studios was listed in Chicago City Directories at several different addresses between 1847 and 1900.  The main proprietor seems to be Joseph  W. Gehrig who listed 337 Madison as his place of business between 1881 and 1900.  Frank A. Place (note again the photographer's mark) was listed at this address between 1888 and 1895 which would be dead on with the photograph date above.  Joseph Waldon Gehrig was born 7 Mar 1846 in Switzerland to Gregorius and Barbara (Kuhnvonvason) Gehrig.  I don't know when he came to America, but he was married about 1880 to Annie Getchow.  Joseph died 13 Feb 1915 in Chicago and is buried at Forest Home Cemetery in Cook County, IL.

Frank A. Place was born in June of 1851 in Indiana, married about 1858 to Abbie C. Place.  They had at least one child Alberta born about 1870.  His daughter Alberta married Charles A. Raynor also a photographer.  Sometime before 1910 he and his wife moved to Winthrop, Suffolk, Massachusetts where he continued his work as a photographer.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Two Brothers, Trees Through Eternity

Daniel & William Shafer, Oakwood Cemetery
Every summer when I visit my parents in my hometown of Mt. Vernon, IL I spend quite a bit of time in the local cemeteries looking for headstones of my ancestors and always end up taking pictures of numerous other stones that catch my attention.  A couple of years ago I took pictures of these unusual looking headstones and forgot all about them until I read the recent call for submissions of your favorite headstones for Graveyard Rabbits' resurrected Carnival.  This will be my first submission for Graveyard Rabbits and think these headstones fit my blog's premise of "Forgotten Faces and Long Ago Places."  I don't have pictures of these two young men, but hopefully through this blog post they will now not be forgotten.

(L) Daniel H. son of M. & C.M. Shafer
Born Nov 16, 1881
Died Sept 21, 1908
(R) Wm. H. Shafer
Born Sept. 3, 1875
Died Nov 21, 1898

Wm & Daniel Shafer, Oakwood, Mt. Vernon, IL

These stones were made to look like tree trunks with limbs, vines, leaves and flowers wrapped around them.  They each hold a scroll hung with rope with the decedent's name, birth and death date.  After I started looking at the information on the stones I realized I had to know more.  The two brothers died so young, Daniel at age 26, William at age 23. Although not unusual for the times, how very sad for their parents.  Obviously from the intricacy of the stones these young men were greatly loved.  

After checking I found this information on their parents in the 1880 Mt. Vernon, Illinois (Jefferson County) census:  Daniel M. Shafer age 28 born about 1852 in Illinois, wife Cynthia M. age 28, his father's birthplace Germany, mother's name Nancy M. Duffer, her birthplace was Tennessee.  Daniel's occupation was miller.  In 1880 Daniel Sr. and Cynthia had two children, Wm. Hy. age 4 and Lillian C. age 10 months  (son Daniel, Jr. would be born in 1881).  Daniel's mother aged 55 lived with them.  I found them again in the 1900 Mt. Vernon census, Daniel Sr. was listed as Darnel.  They had three children living with them, Lillian C. age 20, Daniel age 18 and Mary M. age 16, William having died in 1898. 

If you look closely at the second picture you will see a rectangular shaped stone between the two brothers' stones.  That stone is their parents, Daniel Sr. and Cynthia Shafer.  Daniel was born 16 Dec 1851 and died 9 Feb 1906 just two years before Daniel Jr.  Cynthia was born 1852 and died 1943.  I could find no further information on and also had no luck with finding any obituaries.  I really wish I knew how these young men died.  Now however, I feel I know them a little and next time I go back I will look again for these stones just to maybe say that someone remembers.

If you want to see more of this Carnival's favorite cemetery photographs head on over to Graveyard Rabbits!

Sentimental Sunday - Women with Hats - 1880's Melbourne Australian Woman

This cabinet card photo of an unknown woman with a rather unusual hat and beautiful lacy neck adornment appears to have been taken in Melbourne, Austrialia. The card seems to have been trimmed off at the bottom, but you can still make out the photographer's name, "Yeoman & Co.," 139 Clarendon Street.   A Google search did not yield much but it appears the photographer John Yeoman was active in Melbourne between 1882 - 1889.  She has a rather prim expression on her face, wonder what she was thinking?

Friday, February 10, 2012

Sepia Saturday #112 - I Never Met a Book I Didn't Like!

I have always loved books from when I was a very young girl reading my treasured fairy tale books; I even used to pore over a set of Childcraft Encyclopedias!  But what I remember most vividly was in the second grade when my mother brought home to me one day "The Bobbsey Twins at the Seashore" by Laura Lee Hope (pseudonym started by Edward Stratemayer).   I was hooked for life.  The Bobbsey Twins were  Nan and Bert, age twelve and Freddie and Flossie aged six who had all sorts of wonderful adventures.  From there I moved on to the "Five Little Peppers" by Margaret Sidney and then Nancy Drew by Carolyn Keene (also a pseudonym by the Stratemayer Syndicate).    From there my obsession just grew and grew throughout my life.  I have probably read (and owned) thousands of books in my lifetime.  Today I own both a Nook and a Kindle as well as read books on my iPad and iPhone!  I still love the real thing as well buying my favorite authors in hardcover and picking up old books in antique and consignment stores.  

A couple of years ago I made this scrapbook page for a scrapbooking site (now closed) challenge that shows how books have taken over my life. 

And this all leads very neatly into this week's topic of "Books" at Sepia Saturday.   Books were often used as props by photographers in vintage photos and since I also have a love for these old orphan photographs I thought I would share a few of these as well.

This photograph I posted previously, but thought it deserved a repeat.  This is an unknown Chicago woman circa 1882- 1888 posing with three books.  She is wearing a beautiful ruffled coat, gloves and hat with feathers. The photographer of this cabinet card photo was Copelin of 75 Madison Street, Chicago.

This lovely little lady with her long curls and lacy dress with ribbons is posing with some type of large tome on a velvet draped table.  This is a cabinet card taken by McCormick and Heald of 22 Winter St. Boston.  According to the New York Public Library System who has a large listing of American photographers, McCormick and Heald were active between the 1870's and 1880's. The beveled edges with gold gilt on this card would date this around 1880.

This last photo I believe dates around 1915 - 1920.  There is no identification of the subject or photographer.  The young girl, probably around age twelve or so, is wearing a lovely, simple white dress with white tights and white shoes.  She is holding an open book in her hand.  She also has on several pieces of  jewelery, a ring, bracelet, and what appears to be a pearl necklace, which I would think would be uncommon for a girl her age so most likely came from a family of some status. 

I hope you have enjoyed my trip down memory lane and will flip the page over to Sepia Saturday for more interesting takes on "Books."

Two Young Brothers from Ashland, O. (Ohio)

This wonderful  CDV of two sweet young boys, most likely brothers, from Ashland, Ohio is a great example of 1870's photography.  The boys who appear to be about six or seven years old, are leaning on a fringed chair which was used as a prop mainly in the 1870's and the boy on the left is wearing a tailored adult-style suit.  Also, note the bowler-style hats each boy is holding in his hand.  Both boys have such a serious expression on their face they almost appear to be ready to cry.  The picture could have been dated as early as the mid to late 1860's but for the information I learned about the photographer.

Willis L. Edwards (1843 - ?) was born in Bucyrus, Ohio to Dr. L. M. and Susan Edwards.  He was adopted at six months of age by Rev. William Hutchinson after the death of his parents and spent the early years of his life in Tennessee.  He returned to Bucyrus in 1860 where he began his photography career.  He served four months in the 86th Ohio Volunteer Infantry in 1862.  After his service he interned as a manager with Budtorf & McCormick in Ashland.  According to Diane VanSkiver Gagel in Ohio Photographers: 1839-1900 he was  listed as photographer in Ashland between 1870 - 1884*.  This also concurs with the information I found in the 1870 and 1880 Ashland, Ohio censuses.  He married Mary J. Sauer in 1864 and they had three chilren, Ida M. Charles,  and Milton L. Edwards.  Mary died in 1873 and Willis remarried Mary A. Heifner.  I was unable to find any information on him after the 1880 census.

*Ohio Photographers: 1839 - 1900.  Diane VanSkiver Gagel, 1998, Carl Mautz Publishing, Nevada City, CA, pg 14.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Those Places Thursday - London, Tower Bridge Past and Present

Tower Bridge Late 1800's early 1900's
Postcard of the Tower Bridge London, most likely depicting the late 1800's to early 1900's (note the horse and buggies on the approach.

Tower Bridge September 2009
Photo taken by me on my first (and hopefully not last) trip to London in September 2009.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Wordless Wednesday - Old Woman from the 1860's

1860's Unidentified Woman, Unknown Photographer & Location

Monday, February 6, 2012

Military Monday - Five WWII Sailors on Leave?

This snapshot of five WWII sailors from the US Navy is dated 1945 - there is no location, but there are last names and ranks on the back.  Were they on leave or was this at the end of the war?  L-R , Mowery - CMOMM ( Chief Motor Machinists Mate), Goodrow - FIC (EM) (Fleet Intelligence Center Electricians Mate), Nugent - QMI/C (Quartermaster 1st Class, Busch - EM3C (Electicians Mate 3rd Class, and Bork? -EM2C (Electricians Mate 2nd Class.  I wish I knew more about them, but they seem very happy and appear to have been good wartime friends.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Sentimental Sunday - Women with Hats - Fashionable New York Miss

This CDV of an unidentified, fashionable young woman from New York City was most likely taken around the late 1870's to the early 1880's.  I base this on several factors. First is the thickness of the card and the single rounded border. Secondly, photographer imprints on the back of the card became complex covering the back between 1870 and 1890. The type of pose, a closeup bust covering 3/4 of the print tended to dominate CDV's  between 1874 - 1890.  Her hairstyle was very popular of the later 1870's woman with curls on the forehead and up-swept bun. Additionally, the fashion of the 1870's trended towards high elaborate collars with much lace and trim about the neck. It seemed the fussier the better.  Note her very fashionable hat with feathers and   attached to her hair somehow to keep it to the side.  She also has what appears to be flowers in her hair and is wearing an elaborate necklace with perhaps a locket.

When I researched the photographer it validated my belief of the dating of the photograph.  The Pach Brothers photographers were well-known for photographing well-to-do, fashionable New Yorkers between the 1860's until the company closed its doors in the 1960's.  They photographed thousands of people over the years and their customers included many upper-crust New York patrons as well as famous figures such as Mark Twain and Thomas Edison, theatrical figures such as Charlie Chaplin and Mary Pickford, politicians including every American president from Ulysses S. Grant through Franklin D. Roosevelt, and students from Harvard and Yale where they had branches of their studio.  The Pach Brothers were Gustavus (1848-1904), Gotthelf (1852-1925), and Morris (1837 - ?) who came from Berlin, Germany as children.  They got their start in photography in Long Branch, New Jersey a resort for the wealthy where they met Ulysses S. Grant who became a patron and invested in their first studio.   Gustavus eventually moved to New York around 1871 and established the studio first at 858 Broadway and then in 1877 at 841 Broadway.  This would align with my dating of the photograph between late 1870's and early 1880's.  If you would like to learn more about the Pach Brothers please check out this New York Historical Society link.  It has much information on their life and houses the Pach Brothers Portait Photograph Collection which contains over 1000 photographs between the mid-eighteenth century and 1947.  After reading this I feel very lucky to have this photograph in my collection.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Sepia Saturday #111 - It's A Dog's Life!

This is a very busy week for me, my parents are coming for a visit and between my job and getting my house ready I don't have a lot of free time, but when I heard what this week's theme was at Sepia Saturday how could I resist?  I have had a lifelong love affair with dogs.  I was the child that was always dragging home stray dogs and asking, "Can I keep him, please MOM?" I'm still doing that today with shelter dogs only now I just bring them home and wait for the fallout from hubby later.  He eventually caves and falls in love as well.

This is a picture I picked up on eBay of a sweet little girl with her precious pug.  She seems to be around ten years old and she looks fiercely protective of her baby.  The little dog looks extremely alert and the pose was perfect.  I just love this picture and was so happy to get it.  It kind of reminds me that children have always loved their pets no matter what the era.  It was cut down on the sides and there is no photographer's mark. There is no identification of the subject, just another sad mystery of the past.  Due to the type of the frame I am estimating this was taken between 1895 - 1905.

I posted the next picture in a previous post but thought it deserved a re-post.  The picture shows William Stump in his hunting clothes and rifle with his adoring hunting dog.  The dog was obviously very well trained.  On the back it said, "Harry and his dog."  This photograph also had no photographer's mark so I could not identify the location.  Due to the beveled edges with gold gilting I dated it between 1892 - 1900.  There were too many William and/or Harry Stumps in for me to be able to narrow it down.

Greyfriars Bobby, Edinburgh, Scotland
There is no animal more loyal than a dog and nowhere is this more evident than the story of Greyfriar's Bobby of Edinburgh, the Skye terrier who slept by his master's grave every night for fourteen years until his own death in 1872.  This story has always brought tears to my eyes and I was fortunate enough to finally go to Scotland two years ago and see his resting place for myself.

Greyfriars Bobby:
Died 14th Jan 1872
Aged 16 years
Let his loyalty & devotion
Be a lesson to us all.

Teresa & Bebe ca 1959
Dogs of my Past:   Bebe, Ripley, Kimmie and Roxie:    As I mentioned before I have had a lifelong love of dogs and have had many four-legged friends over the years.  Here are pictures of just a few.

Ripley ca 1998

Roxy ca  1979
Kimmie ca 1965

Bailey was the most recent of my dogs to leave me and he went much too soon dying of cancer at the age of six.   Rest in peace little buddy - I still miss you so much!

Bailey 2004

Here is my crew today:  Riley and Salsa (both shelter dogs)

Riley & Salsa - Good Buds!  2007

and Chloe our Queen Bee who rules the roost!

Chloe 2011 age 9
I guess you don't really own a dog, you rent them, and you have to be thankful that you had a long lease.  

Joe Garagiola

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