Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Young 1900's Couple from St. Louis

This young couple had their wedding photo taken by photographer J. Haas whose studio was located at 7117 A. So. Broadway, St. Louis.  He was Jacob Haas who operated a studio at 7115 1/2 Broadway for a number of years until probably about 1906 - 1907 when he moved to the 7117 A. So Broadway location.  I wanted to date this photograph earlier, probably about 1900, but will call it 1907.

The brides's white dress is simple, yet seems to fit her stature.  She has a beautiful headdress of roses and lace but her corsage almost seems too large for her bodice.  The groom is elegant in his simple dark suit and is also wearing a large corsage because I wouldn't call it a boutonniere.  He is also wearing white gloves.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Tintype Tuesday - Two 1870's Tintypes - Same Young Woman?

These two tintypes were purchased in a group of photos from the same vendor and I believe them to be of the same young woman.  I have examined them at length and although there are some slight differences  such as she appears to be wearing dark gloves in the second photo and the dress appears slightly different which could mean that perhaps the photos were taken on a different day.  I estimate that these photos were taken sometime between 1872 and 1875 but as always I reserve my right to be wrong!  At any rate, she is a lovely young woman, so serious and reflective in her poses.  I wish I knew who she was and what she was thinking.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sentimental Sunday - Women with Hats - One and a Half Women from Danville, PA

This week's Women with Hats features a cabinet card with two for the price of one, or rather one and half women.  This photograph taken by McMahan & Irland shows presumably a mother and very young daughter, about age three or four, both wearing hats.  I believe this cabinet card photo to have been taken in the very late 1880's, probably 1888 or 1889.    The mother is wearing a typical 1880's bustled dress and an amazing hat.  The little girl is wearing an white dress and her sweet face is framed by the straw hat with the white flower at the top. 

The photographers are Thomas M. McMahan (1829 - ) son of James and Margaret McMahan and of Scots-Irish origin.  He began to learn the art of photography in 1853 and in 1865 settled in Danville.   In 1871 he went into business with  Mr. Ireland under the name of McMahan & Ireland.  In 1854 he married Carolyn Reed. 

Ireland is James M. Ireland, who was born in Northumberland County, PA in 1847, a son of John M. and Amanda (McMahan) Ireland, also of Scotch- Irish descent    In 1864 he enlisted in Company E, Ninth Pennsylvania Volunteer Cavalry and served until the close of war and was captured at Woodbury, Tenn, and was paroled three weeks later.   After his return to to Danville he married Lucy F. Maxwell.

Source:  Montour County, Pennsylvania, Biographical Sketches

Sepia Saturday - Older Women of a Certain Character in Bonnets

Wow!  This week's Sepia Saturday was a real doozy, I wasn't sure which way to go with it, but I just kept coming back to to that old lady in the bonnet with that, shall we say, unusual look on her face.  Or let's just call it character.  I have  several photographs of "older women of character in bonnets" I would like to share so here they are:

This first photograph is a CDV taken probably about 1863-1864 by Geo. W. Wilcox, Traveling Photographer of an unidentified woman.  This appears that it may have possibly had a revenue stamp on it at one time so most likely late 1864.

1864 Woman

The first photo below is a CDV taken around 1860 - 1862.  The card was cut at the corners to fit into a photo album.  There is no photographer listed, but on the back is written in hand, " Grandma Misserner, Harrison & Ernest Great Grandmother."  The second photo is also most likely early 1860's and the woman and photographer are both unidentified.  Update:  I just realized the second woman, on the right below, is wearing eyeglasses!

1860 -62 Woman
Early 1860's Woman

This next photograph is interesting, it appears to be of a woman probably late 1850's to early 1860's, but the photo was copied from glass and reprinted most likely sometime in the 1870's.  The photographer who made the copy was Groves & Little, 21 Henry Street, Carlisle and the woman is unidentified.

Late 1850's to Early 1860's Woman

This last photo I have posted before but I think it deserves another mention, don't you?

Early 1860's Woman
Please check out all the other enticing photos and stories at Sepia Saturday.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Fashionable Friday - Girls' Dress Fashions of the 1860's

Yesterday I posted a photograph (CDV) of a very young girl dated between 1864 and 1866.  A reader made a comment about the "off the shoulder" style seeming a little mature for a young girl.  That had me thinking so I did a little digging into my existing stash of photographs and came up with a couple more from the same era of young girls in similar type dresses.  The first photo I believe to have been taken between 1862 and 1863.  The photographer was J. Good, 36 Greene St., Opposite the Post Office, Trenton, N.J.  This little angel with ringlets in her hair, perhaps five or six years old,  is wearing the same style dress and notice her fringed sleeves.  This is one of my favorite photos, I absolutely adore her.

Unidentified Girl from Trenton, NJ

The second girl who appears to be a bit older, perhaps ten or eleven,  is also wearing the off-the-shoulder style in a belted, gingham dress.  She also is wearing a necklace, bracelet and ring.  This photograph was taken between 1864 and 1866 as evidenced by the revenue stamp and initialed by the artist "RB."  The photographer's imprint reads "Barcalow, 76 Bowery, NY."  He was Richard Garrison Barcalow (ca 1826 - 1891), a daguerreotypist and photographer in New York as early as 1859.  I believe he had a studio in New York as late as 1889.

Unidentified Girl from NYC

I also found these drawings in Peterson's Magazine from 1862 showing that the off-the-shoulder style for young girls was quite popular around that time.

Petersons July 1862
Petersons Sep 1862

Thursday, October 25, 2012

1864-1866 Girl in Pantaloons - CDV with Revenue Stamp

This CDV photograph features a sweet young girl from the 1860's era, probably about five or six years, standing next to a chair wearing a gingham dress with pantaloons.   She is so adorable with her tight curls and the pursed lips, almost a frown. During the Civil War, faced with heavy financial demands, Congress passed on June 30, 1864 a new tax on all photographs, ambrotypes, daguerreotypes or any other sun-pictures, to be paid for by attaching a revenue stamp on the back of the photograph. The stamp tax on photographs was repealed effective August 1, 1866.   Therefore we know this carte de visite is dated between 1864 and 1866.

The amount of tax required for a carte de visite was determined by the cost of the photograph.  In this case the 3 cent "Proprietary" stamp tells us that this CDV  cost between 25 and 50 cents.  Photographers were required to initial the stamp although you will find that this is not always the case. You will see that on the back of this CDV the photographer did indeed initial the stamp, however, as there is no photographer's mark we unfortunately do not know the identity of the artist.  

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - 1905 - 1910 Couple from Milwaukee, WI

This first photograph features an unidentified  newly wedded couple in Milwaukee dated probably between 1905 - 1910.  In this photo the bride is standing next to the groom who is seated in a chair.  She is quite lovely in her white satin gown.  There are so many interesting details to this dress, the high neck, the sleeves which are poufy on the upper arms and fitted at the lower, and the trimmed tiers on the skirt.  Her headdress and white rose bouquet are quite simple and beautiful as well.  Her groom is very dashing in his dark suit and he sports a matching boutonniere.  I can see a ring on his right hand, but not on his left.  She has a small brooch at her neck.

What was interesting to me when I purchased this photograph was that it came with a second photo - one of the bride and her maid-of-honor which could possibly be her sister judging by their facial features.  In this photo the bride is seated and the other woman is standing.  The bride's pose gives us a better glimpse of her dress especially the lovely ruching detail of her sleeves and bodice.  In this photo you can see that she too is wearing a ring on her right hand. The second woman's dress is also white with many ruffles.  Her neckline is lower and she is wearing a pearl necklace.  She also appears to be wearing white gloves and is holding a large bouquet of white roses which may be the bride's.   I find the facial expressions on all the subjects quite interesting.  I know it was quite common for photographers to shoot their subjects sans smiles or with little expression, but these people almost seem bored.  I find the pictures striking however, especially with the starkness of the white dresses against the dark backgrounds.

The photographers were Gumerman & Gardner located at 412 National Ave. in Milwaukee. Gumerman was Johan Georg Gumerman born 10 Sep 1882 in Oberwarmensteinach, Bayern, Germany.  He changed his name to George at some point after emigrating to the U.S. and on 16 May 1905 in Milwaukee he married Amanda Mary Jubeck (1885 - 1979).  He operated a photography studio with George Gardner as early as 1905, but they moved to the 412 National Ave. address probably about 1906.  Gumerman died in Milwaukee, WI on 15 Oct 1962.  I no luck finding any  information on George Gardner as there are too many listings in that name on for Milwaukee.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Fashionable Friday - Early 1870's Glens Falls, NY Woman

This CDV photograph of an unidentified young woman from Glen Falls, NY is a bit faded but still is a great example of early 1870's photography. She is wearing the typical, curled on top of the head hairstyle, and her dress has the lace collar and intricate work that was so popular at the time. If you look closely you will notice that her lips and cheeks have been slightly tinted.  The oval frame of the card is a big clue that this is an 1870's photograph as well as the horizontal imprint on the back of the card.

The photographer was A. Orr, Jr. of Glens Falls, NY.  I did not find Orr in any census records but did find him listed on an 1876 map of Glens Falls on  I also found several mentions of Orr when I Googled him, one in the "1871 Directory of Queensbury & Glens Falls" listed as "photographer, Traphagan's Building, Ridge."   Another link shows a photograph with the photographer's mark, "C. L. Lovejoy successor to A. Orr, Jr. 1878" which suggests that either Orr sold his business before 1878 or perhaps died or moved from the area.  This mention of him at suggests that the photograph in question may be a picture of  Orr himself.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Sepia Saturday #147 - The Gallant 30 (Bahamas) Sail Off to WWI in 1915

This week's Sepia Saturday theme centers around the military, uniforms, group photos, etc.  What came to my mind was a photograph I posted earlier on one of my family history blogs, RogersFamilyHistory about my husband's grandfather, Hershel Stanley Hall. During WWI many Bahamians were anxious to get into the actual fighting according to Paul Albury in his book, "The Story of the Bahamas."  The first group of eager volunteers of the British West India Regiment were trained and ready to sail for England from Nassau on 9 Sep 1915.  Hundreds of people came to see them off and the Governor's wife presented them with a silken flag bearing the colony's Coat of Arms. My husband's grandfather, Hershel Stanley Hall only seventeen years old at the time was one of them.  You can see him on the far left in the photograph above.  This photograph was taken right before they set sail.  It is actually an old photocopy that was in my mother-in-law's possession and I do not know its origin.  

Hershel Hall was descended from British Loyalists who were forced to leave the US Colonies after the US Revolution and resettled in the Bahamas.  It is believed that Hershel was descended from Nathaniel Hall who emigrated to Nassau, Bahamas from Savannah, GA around 1766 although I have yet to prove the connection.  In the book, "The Early Settlers of the Bahamas and Colonists of North America" by A. Talbot Bethell  in a chapter titled "Biographies of the Descendants" I found this mention of "Hall, Hershal Stanley - Born 1894.  Educated:  Boys' Central School; formerly Merchant.  Descendant of Nathaniel Hall, Loyalist."

Members of The Gallant 30 and other contingents returned from war on 19 Jun 1919 as evidenced by this document (again an old photocopy) which was in my mother-in-law's possession   Hershel Hall is listed on line 47.  I don't know much else about Hershel's war experience, but I thought the photograph deserved a mention.

For more great photographs and stories please join us at Sepia Saturday.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Fashionable Friday - Late 1870's Spencer, Mass Fashionista

Unidentified 1870's Spencer, MA woman
Today's Fashionable Friday photograph is a CDV (Carte de Visite) most likely from the late 1870's. The subject is a young, curly-haired woman with a somber look about her.  She almost seems a bit dazed.  The photograph was taken in half pose from the waist up and from what I can tell she is dressed quite fashionably in the style of the mid to late 1870's.  Her hairstyle is somewhat typical of the era with frizzy bangs and although most womn pulled their hair up into a bun on top of their heads hers is more towards the back.  I suspect this young woman may have had a little trouble managing all those tight curls!  The 1870's trend of wearing hair piled high on the head was to make way for the high, elaborate collars and necklines.   The trend was lots of lace and trim about the neck, the more the better.  I think this subject's neckline definitely fits all these criteria! She is even wearing a type of chain that was commonly seen on women at that time.  The dress is a bit unusual from the little I can see, the sleeves and buttons in particular.

I have written before about the photographer, E. L. Jaynes who was Edward Lyman James born in Massachusetts in 1842.  Jaynes was a well-known photographer in Spencer and died there in 1937.  See here for previous posts.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Sentimental Sunday - Two 1900's Women in Stylish Hats

This dark graphite colored photograph features two stylish women wearing dark suits, white blouses and each wearing a hat of an entirely different style.  The woman on the left is wearing a hat which is adorned with fabric bows.  The one on the right sports a hat  that is wider and lower in style and has feather plumes and some kind of decoration which I cannot decipher on the left.  It also has what appears to be a scarf hanging in the rear.  This photo which measures 4 3/8" x 3 1/4" was most likely taken in the early 1900's when this type of card became popular.  The subjects and the photographer are all unidentified.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Fashionable Friday - Civil War Era Vergennes, VT Woman

Unidentified 1860's Vergennes, VT woman
Today's Fashionable Friday is a little bit of a head-scratcher for me.  At first glance I was sure this CDV was taken in the early to mid 1860's.  Her dress and hair both pointed to this conclusion.  The style is very reminiscent of what was popular around 1863 as is evidenced in photograph number 2 below. Both have the low shoulder seam that was so common in that era.  It is difficult to tell from this scan that the card has slightly rounded corners that suggest a later date, perhaps 1869 or 1870.  I can only surmise one of two things; either this woman was still wearing the earlier 1860's style at the end of the decade perhaps due to the economic hardships of the aftereffects of the Civil War, or the photographer remounted an earlier photo on a newer card for the customer.  

The photographer as evidenced on the back was J. H. Stearns of Vergennes, VT.  After a little research I determined this was Joseph H. Stearns born ca 1819 in Vermont.  He is found in both the 1860 and 1880 Addison County, VT censuses married to wife Amanda.  In 1860 he listed his occupation as "artist" and in 1880 as "photographer."  Waltons Vermont Register & Farmers Almanac, 1877 listed him as one of two of the city of Vergennes' photographers.  According to this very interesting article at he participated in mapping Vermont between 1854-1859 in "extraordinary detail" with other mapmakers.  "The results of this work were eleven large wall maps which pictured the state of Vermont in remarkable detail."  He is credited on the surface of the Addison County map as "Daguerrean Artist" J. H. Stearns and thirteen views of his photographs of local homes and businesses with names of property owners adorn the map.  I found a mention of his wife's death in 1882 in the Vermont Chronicle but nothing more of Mr. Stearns after that.

Unidentifed early 1860's woman
October 1862 Peterson's Magazine

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Wedding Wednesday - Early 1900's Hoboken, NJ Couple

This unidentified, young married couple had their photograph taken sometime between the turn of the century and 1910 by photographer W. Manewal of 520 Washington St., Hoboken, NJ.  The bride is wearing a simple dress, perhaps gray in color, fitted at the waist and it has a high neckline.  There are small, tiered layers on the hem and midway up the skirt and the bodice has an unusual ruffle in the middle. The sleeves are more fitted on the upper arms and billow down to the cuffs which match the neckline.  Her beautiful headdress is floor-length and she carries a lovely bouquet of white roses.  If you look closely it appears she moved slightly as the bouquet is a little out of focus.  The groom is quite dapper and simply dressed and sports a small boutonniere.

The photographer is a true American success story.  He was William Manewal who was born 6 Sep 1872 in W√∂rrstadt, Germany and immigrated to the United States in 1890 at age 18 on the ship Rhynland which sailed from Antwerp, Belgium   I found numerous hits for him on including a listing in the Jersey City, New Jersey City Directory 1893 in which he listed his residence as 807 Hudson and his occupation as photographer.  Ten years later in 1903 according to the same city directory he was practicing his occupation at 520 Washington St. in Hoboken, NJ where this photograph was taken.  On 18 May 1903 he applied for a US Passport and listed this additional information:  wife Albertina (Wassner) Manewal, two children William 9 years and Adelfed 9 months, he became a naturalized citizen of the United States on 9 Mar 1900.  Manewal was 5'8" tall, had brown hair, blue eyes and had a light complexion.  By 1930, Manewal and his wife were living in Teaneck, Bergen County, NJ where he still earned his living as a photographer.

I also found a number of his photographs on Google as well as a short biography written by William Nelson (see source below), which described him as "a leader in his particular field of art" and "he is regarded as an expert in his art.....his patronage comes to him from far and wide." According to the author, Manewal studied in Paris, France and Venice, Italy before immigrating to the United States where he opened a photographic studio in Hoboken upon his arrival.  He became extremely successful and was a member of a number of organizations including the New Jersey State Photographic Art Association, Hoboken Lodge, Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks and the Hoboken Academy.

Source:  Nelson's Biographical  Cyclopedia of New Jersey, Volume 2 by William Nelson, 1913, publisher Eastern Historical Publishing Society, New York.
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