A young woman poses for her portrait at the Samson & Company Studio in Barmen, Germany. She is wearing a dark dress with a dark polka dot top. The woman looks quite serious. In fact, her expression, in particular her eyes, projects a haunted appearance. One wonders what might be troubling this young lady. Barmen is a former industrial city located in the Bergisches Land region. The city merged with four other towns in 1929 to form the city of Wuppertal. It is interesting to note that the cabinet card gallery has two other images by a gallery named Samson & Company. Both of these photographs are German but they are not located in Barmen. The other two photo studios were located in Duisburg and Karlsruhe respectively. You may view all three images by searching the category “Photographer: Samson & Company”. To complicate matters further, the book “The Lives of Erich Fromm: Love’s Prophet” reports that Fromm’s mother took him regularly to Samson & Company for portraits. The author notes that the studio was located in Frankfurt and catered to Jewish families. Erich Fromm grew up to be a celebrated pioneer psychologist.
Mr Colton Paine Lee sits on a chair beside his large curly haired dog. Both the pooch and his/her master are looking at the camera. Mr. Lee is grinning while his dog is staring quite intently. The name of the photographer or the location of the studio are not identified. Preliminary research found no information concerning Mr. Lee. However, it is possible that the gentleman’s name may actually be “Colton Paine”, while the dog may be named “Lee”. Any assistance from the great genealogical detectives that visit the cabinet card gallery would be very appreciated.
TWO TEENAGE GYPSY GIRLS PREPARE FOR CARNIVAL IN CHALON SUR SAONE, FRANCE (VINTAGE REAL PHOTO POSTCARD)
It appears that the two young women seen in this portrait are dressed and ready for the French Carnival. The festival occurs after the “Feast of Fools” and has been a tradition since the sixteenth century or earlier. The girls in the photograph of this vintage real photo postcard are dressed as gypsies and holding stereotypical tambourines. The girls are about in their teenage years. They were photographed by Monsieur Henry of Chalon-Sur-Saone, France. The city is located in the south of the Burgundy region of that nation. I wonder what the fascination is with gypsies? The obsession is apparent when one looks at postcards from around the turn of the century (1800’s to the 1900’s). An observer of these postcards will see gypsies here, there, and everywhere. Perhaps visitors to the cabinet card gallery would like to hypothesize about this cultural phenomenon. I would appreciate your input. Now, back to this postcard. The previous owner of this postcard translated the message as “Remember with affection your little girlfriend. A thousand kisses, Germaine”. My guess is that the shorter woman in this image is Mlle Germaine.
This carte de visite portrait features a French foot soldier from the 18th batallion de chasseurs. Chasseur is the French word for hunter. The term was used by the French and Belgian Army to denote light infantry or light cavalry. These troops were trained and utilized for rapid action. The soldier in this image is holding a pair of white gloves. His facial expression exudes everything military. The photograph was taken by the Gabriel Studio.
This cabinet card portrait features a pretty young woman who likely performed in a balancing act for an unidentified circus. She has one foot on a ball that was used for balancing feats. The photograph is a bit risque for it’s era. The young lady is displaying a bit of a devilish grin. Note the upside down ghost image at the top of this image. The logo of the McDannell studio in Wattsburg, Pennsylvania is visible and the cause of this phenomenon is that this cabinet card was likely stored face-to-face with the McDannell cabinet card and The McDannell logo was pressed printed onto this circus performer photograph. It is worth mentioning that one of Mcdannell’s photographs is a resident of the Cabinet Card Gallery collection. The above cabinet card image was produced by the Rykert studio in Buffalo, New York. Chauncy W. Rykert and William Rykert were both photographers in Buffalo. Both men shared a studio on Buffalo’s Jefferson Street in the late 1870’s. Chauncy is the most likely one who produced this image as he remained a photographer in Buffalo for many more years than William.
This photograph of a young child is from the studio of Professor David Ehrlich of New York City. The child is beautifully dressed and is holding a toy in his left hand and standing beside a chair with a toy ball on the seat. A sketch of Prof. Ehrlich and a sketch of his studio can be found on the reverse of the photograph (see scan below).
This vintage portrait photograph features a nicely dressed little boy posing with his wheelbarrow. The child flashes a wonderful smile as he looks into the camera. The wheelbarrow appears to be made of tin and has a painted horse on it’s side. The photograph was taken by A. N. Camp of Jamestown, New York. The book “Illustrated History of Jamestown, Chautauqua County, NY (1900)” reports that Camp’s studio was located at 207 Main Street and that he began his photography business in 1885. The article also stated that he was born in Erie County, Pennsylvania in 1852. The “Photographic Journal of America (1893)” provides further biographical information. The journal states that Camp was educated as a teacher but began his photography career in Mansfield, Ohio in 1881. He sold the Ohio studio in order to move to Jamestown. Camp must have been active in photographic societies because he is cited in several professional journals. One of his portraits was published in “The Professional and Amateur Photographer (1908).
This vintage real photo postcard features a portrait of French stage actress and dancer Mlle. Derminy. I am unsure of her first name but she is listed in a number of sources as Marthe Derminy, who was an early film actress. The two performers may, or may not be, the same individual. Take a look at the headpiece that Mlle Derminy is wearing in this photograph. She looks like she has antennas coming out of the top of her head. It is as if she just walked out of a space ship. She is a pretty woman and is posed in relatively risque fashion. Derminy was photographed by many of the most celebrated photographers of her era. I have seen portraits of her by Reutlinger, Walery, and Stebbins. This postcard portrait was published by Societe Industrielle de Photograpie which was located in Rueil, France.
This family portrait carte de visite includes a set of parents and their three young sons. Each member of this clan appears very serious as they pose for this image. The family is wearing their fine clothing for their photograph which was taken by Max Schmidt of Neu-Weissensee, Germany. Mom is holding a book, most likely a bible. Each boy is wearing a hat and holding a toy. One boy is holding a horn, the second child has a ball toy, and and the third boy is holding a trundling hoop. Hoop rolling or hoop trundling is a child’s game which has been documented as far back as Ancient Greece. In the game, the hoop is rolled along the ground, usually by an object held by the player. The player tries to keep the hoop upright for an extended period of time or performs tricks with the hoop.
A young couple poses for their portrait at an unknown studio and locale. The pair are well dressed and holding their hats. The woman is wearing a ring and earrings. Their style of clothing provides a clue that they are likely being photographed somewhere in the western area of the United States sometime in the 1880’s or 1890’s. A pencilled inscription on the bottom front of the cabinet card names the couple as “Cyrus Bechtel and wife”.