A European (probably French) photography studio created this portrait of three young men posing with two bicycles. The men are well dressed but give the appearance of ruffians. The cigarettes hanging from their lips create a roguish look. Two of the boys are wearing high boots which indicate that they are the bike owners. Tucking pant bottoms into the boots prevented bike accidents. This photo postcard of a trio of bikers is a rare find and likely dates to the 1900’s decade.

Published in: on March 29, 2017 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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This cabinet card portrait features a sweet looking teenage girl dressed in what today we might call, a “preppy look”. Perhaps she is a student. Be sure to note her scarf and hat. The girl’s eyes are wide open and she appears to be suppressing a smile. The photographer’s camera captured the girl in an outdoor setting. The photographer was Hy. Flett who operated a studio in London. Interestingly, the studio was located at 119 Cheapside. This image is actually the second cabinet card in the “Cabinet Card Gallery” from a studio on Cheapside. Research revealed that  Cheapside  is the name of a street in the city of London. The name Cheapside is derived from the term “marketplace”. Henry Flett (1872-1948) was born in St. Leonards in Sussex. He operated two London studios. The Cheapside studio existed between 1897 and 1940. His second studio was located at 103 Newgate Street (1903-1909). He partnered with Arthur Frame Stevens in the 1930’s.

Published in: on March 28, 2017 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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This is an opportunity to meet Christiana. One unsourced writer asserts that she was a Brazilian stage star.  I was unable to confirm that assertion. However, I can confirm that Christiana was quite beautiful. This vintage real photo postcard features a profile view of the stage star. She is dressed in a pretty flower patterned dress and is wearing flowers in her long flowing hair. Senorita Christiana’s portrait is by the Walery Studio which was located in Paris, France. The hand tinted postcard was published by the Parisian firm  “ELD” (E. Le Delay) and was part of a series (no. 2002). The postcard advertises the Casino de Paris which was one of the better known music halls in Paris. Christiana clearly performed there. Lucien Walery was a celebrated Paris photographer known for his portraits of artists and cabaret dancers from the city’s music halls. He is very well known for his portraits of Mata Hari and Josephine Baker. Walery did a lot of work in the genre of nude/erotic photography. He photographed the beautiful women of Paris between the early 1900’s and the 1920’s. You can view other images by this talented photographer by clicking on the category “Photographer: Walery”.

Published in: on March 27, 2017 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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chicago teeen

This cabinet card portrait of a pretty teenage girl is by esteemed Chicago photographer John Kimball Stevens. A number of photographs by Stevens can be viewed in the cabinet card gallery by clicking on the category “Photographer: Stevens”. Stevens operated his gallery out of the McVicker’s Theatre building. The young woman in this photograph is bright eyed and has a terrific pleasant expression. She is clearly holding back a smile. She apparently liked jewelry as evidenced by her interesting necklace, collar pin, and earrings.

A visitor to the Cabinet Card Gallery, named Jon, left a comment indicating that he had found a cabinet card image at a flea market that appeared to be the same woman as the one pictured above.He was kind enough to send a copy of the image that he found (see the image below). I definitely see the similarity in appearance that Jon is referring to. However, the woman in the top cabinet card has a rounded face and springy curls while the woman below has an oval face with thick tight curly hair. In addition, their eyes and smiles are vastly different. Both photographs were taken by the Stevens Gallery which was quite prolific. It is no surprise that they likely had many instances of photographing people that had similar appearance. Thank you Jon for sharing the photograph and your observations.
Reader photo sent Stevens

Published in: on March 26, 2017 at 7:15 am  Comments (7)  
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This vintage real photo postcard features two pretty teenage girls reading a letter together. One wonders about the content of “the letter”. It certainly has put smiles on these girl’s faces. Both girls are well dressed and wearing necklaces and hair accessories. The girl holding the letter is also wearing a bracelet and a ring. This postcard was published by AZO sometime between 1904 and 1918.

Published in: on March 25, 2017 at 5:11 pm  Leave a Comment  



This vintage real photo postcard features two young dandies viewing an open book. They are exquisitely dressed and look like perfect gentlemen. A script of their dialog is printed below the image. Bacarel states to Paul, “A superb point of view”. Paul responds “What an enchanting landscape”. The men are seated on outdoor furniture. The fabric of the chairs present a nice checkered pattern. In the distance are snowy mountain caps. This postcard image is from a studio, yet creates a pretty scene. The postcard is addressed to a central French town named Mezieres en Brenne. The postcard was published by “AS”. I have no exact  identification of this company. Possibilities include “Alfred Schweizer” (Hamburg, Germany), Arthur Schurer & Company (Schoneberg, Germany), or A. Scheers (Brussels, Belgium). The postcard is part of a series (no. 747,  no. 3228).

Published in: on March 24, 2017 at 7:09 pm  Comments (2)  


This tintype portrait features two well dressed young women wearing fancy hats. The ladies are quite pretty. They are well adorned with jewelry. They seem unusually relaxed while having their photograph taken. I would love to know their story. This image is the second tintype to appear in the Cabinet Card Gallery. A tintype, also known as ferrotype, is a photograph made on a thin sheet of metal coated with a dark lacquer or enamel. They were very popular during the 1860’s and 1870’s.

Published in: on March 23, 2017 at 12:00 pm  Comments (2)  



This cabinet card image is highly unusual. I have seen few photographs from this era where the sitter is wearing a leather jacket. This young man is wearing a leather jacket and a cap. The way he is dressed suggests that he may have been a member of the military or the police. However, he is wearing no insignias or badges. The previous owner of this photograph reported that the image was purchased in the Ukraine. The cabinet card is of Russian origin but I can not confirm it is Ukrainian. If one looks at the reverse of the cabinet card inside the egg shaped oval design, one can see the word “Mockba”. This Russian word means Moscow and it is my hypothesis that the mount was produced there.

Published in: on March 22, 2017 at 12:00 pm  Comments (2)  
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harvey 2

harvey 2 1

This vintage real photo postcard (top postcard) features Anglo-German actress and singer, Lillian Harvey (1906-1968). Her acting base was in Germany. Harvey was born in Hornsey, England to an English mother and a German father. During World War I her family was “trapped” in Magdeburg, Germany and Harvey was sent to live with her Swiss aunt. After the war she finished school in Berlin and than studied voice and dance at the Berlin State Opera. In 1924 she earned a role as a revue dancer in Vienna. This was followed by her first movie role which was in an Austrian film named “The Curse”. Thereafter, she starred in multiple silent films. Her first leading role was in “The Passion” (1925). Because of her voice training, Harvey was able to make the transition into “talkies”. She and actor Willy Fritsch became the “dream couple” of German movies. The pair acted together in eleven movies. In the 1930’s Harvey’s films appeared in both German and English and she became popular outside of Germany. She went to Hollywood and made four movies for the Fox Film Corporation (this postcard is from that period). In 1935, Harvey returned to Germany. She appeared in several more films and soon she was under the watchful eye of the Gestapo. Harvey had many Jewish friends in the film industry  and she was supportive of them. By 1939, Miss Harvey was forced to leave Germany, leaving behind valuable real estate holdings. She went to France where, in 1940, she made two movies for director Jean Boyer. In 1943 she was stripped of her German citizenship because she had performed for French troops. When southern France was occupied by the Nazis in 1942, she emigrated to the United States. During the war she did some theatre acting and also worked as a homeside volunteer nurse. After the war, Harvey relocated to Paris. She went on a world tour as a singer and in 1949 made appearances in West Germany. She spent her retirement on the French Riviera (Antibes) where she had a souvenir shop and raised snails for escargot. Harvey was married one time. Her four year marriage to theater director Hartvig Valeur-Larsen ended in divorce. Eventually she settled down with her female partner Else Pitty Wirth (1907-2007). Interestingly, the two women are buried together in Antibes. The imdb gives Harvey 54 acting credits between 1925 and 1940. Interestingly, Lillian Harvey’s name is mentioned in Quentin Tarantino’s film  “Inglorious Bastards” (2009). One of her songs is played on a phonograph and in addition one of the characters in the film mentions liking Harvey’s performance in a film and Joseph Goebbels becomes angry and insists her name never be mentioned in his presence. Click on the link below to hear the Lillian Harvey/Willy Fritsch duet used in the Tarantino movie. The 1936 song is titled “Ich Wollt Ich War Ein Huhn” (I Wish I Was A Chicken). Now would be a good time to discuss this postcard portrait of Miss Harvey. She is looking quite decorated in this photograph. She is wearing a garland of leaves in her hair, a very ornate necklace, a number of large bracelets, two giant rings, and a jeweled clasp on her dress near her cleavage. Note her very notable eye lashes. She is wearing a somewhat provocative dress and it is clear that the aim of the photographer is to emphasize Miss Harvey’s sexiness. The photographer and Miss Harvey succeeded in accomplishing this goal. The postcard was published by the German firm Ross Verlag and was part of a series (no. 8679/1). The postcard credits Fox films.

The second postcard features Miss Harvey in a risque costume. She is showing a “lot of leg” which is quite provocative for her time. It is likely that this image captures her in one of her film roles. The postcard was published by Argenta, which was located in Munich, Bavaria.


                                                              TOP POSTCARD

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                                                                SECOND POSTCARD 



Marcella Albani (1899-1959) was an Italian film actress that appeared in 50 films between 1919 and 1936. Albani was “discovered” by writer/director Guido Parish (Schamberg) when she was twenty years old. They became a very successful film couple until 1924 when they parted ways. Their movies were predominately tear jerkers and adventure stories. The actress also worked with other famous directors such as Joe May, Friedrich Zelnik, and Wilhelm Dieterle. Albani was a major star in the European cinema in the late 1920’s. Her films were made in five different European countries. Many of Albani’s roles were portraying elegant Latin beauties. She certainly looks elegant and beautiful in this postcard portrait. She is dressed exquisitely and her hat is a fashion statement in itself. At the advent of sound movies, Miss Albani turned to writing. One of her several novels was turned into a movie. She continued to act until 1936. Albani was married to director Mario Franchini in 1931. This vintage real photo postcard is of German origin by Ross Verlag of Berlin. The postcard is part of a series (no. 1521/1). The photo is by Aafa film. According to one reliable source, the postcard was issued sometime between 1927 and 1928.