The young man in this carte de visite portrait is displaying a fantastic expression He has a devilish glint in his eyes. This fun loving gentleman is well dressed and sports a terrific beard. The photographer of this cdv was Erwin Hanfstaengl (1838-1905) who operated a photography studio in Stuttgart, Germany. He was married to Marie Schroder Hanfstaengl (1848-1917) who was a noted German operatic soprano and singing teacher. Erwin was a member of the distinguished Stuttgart photography and art publishing family headed by Franz Hanfstaengl. There is an inscription on the reverse of the photo (see image below) which probably identifies the young man. Unfortunately, I am unable to translate the writing and am hopeful a Cabinet Card Gallery visitor will leave a comment that includes the translation.

=stuttgart 1


tophat 2

This vintage photograph captures a young boy doing something rare for his time. The unusual activity is the fact that he is smiling and even more rare is that he is exhibiting a broad smile. The child is cute and nicely dressed. Note his terrific cap and high shoes. The photograph was taken at the Moore studio in Lancaster, Ohio. The photographer was Charles T. Moore (1866-?). He is listed as a photographer in the 1900 and 1910 US census. He lived in Lancaster and was married to Stella Moore. The couple had at least two children, both were girls. The photograph measures about 4 1/4 ” x 6 1/2″.

tophat 3

Published in: on September 2, 2015 at 12:02 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The subject of this vintage photographic portrait is quite a character. He is flashing a great smile and even his eyes are smiling. The mustachioed distinguished gentleman is wearing a three piece suit, a bow tie, and a top hat. He is holding a pair of gloves. I am very curious as to what this interesting looking man is smiling at. The reverse of the photograph has an inscription which identifies him as “Brother Jim”. The photographer of this portrait has his name embossed at the bottom of the photograph. It is difficult to decipher but appears to be M. Crowe (possibly Crow) of Moundsville, West Virginia. The town derives it’s name from the many Adena Indian burial mounds found there. These mounds were constructed more than 2000 years ago. Preliminary research found no  biographical information about the photographer.

tophat 1

Published in: on September 1, 2015 at 12:09 pm  Comments (1)  
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This cabinet card portrait features four well dressed hatted young men posing for their portrait at the J. A. Jones studio in Ashland, Wisconsin. The men present themselves with an air of confidence. That is particularly true of the fellow seated on the right of the photograph. All four men are wearing vests and the two men in the front row appear to be wearing identical striped shirts. It is my theory that the men work in the same business and that is what brings them together for this group portrait. The photographer of this image is John A. Jones. He operated a photography studio in Ashland between 1893 and 1916. A man with the same name had a studio in Hurley, Wisconsin between 1919 and 1922, although I am uncertain that they are one and the same person. Apparently, Mr. Jones of Ashland was a bit of an entrepreneur. Motor Age (1909) reported that Jones bought a sixteen passenger truck to establish a sightseeing stage line between Ashland and Odanah, the seat of the big Indiana Reservation of northern Wisconsin.

Published in: on August 31, 2015 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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This cabinet card portrait offers a double treat. The photograph features very beautiful twin baby sisters. An inscription on the reverse of the image (see below) identifies the girls as “Mary’s Twins”, Edith and Edna McNaughton. The twins are precious and one of them is offering the sweetest smile. The photographer of this terrific cabinet card is E. D. King who operated a studio in Chardon, Ohio. King’s studio was on the Randall Block in Chardon between 1885 and 1895. Research successfully uncovered some information about the twins. The girls were born to William McNaughton and Mary E. Grant McNaughton on 2/27/1891 in Claridon, Ohio. First, here are some details about Edith Emerretta McNaughton (1891-1952). The 1900 US census reveals that the twins had three older siblings. The 1910 US census finds that the twins had a younger sister named Ruth (age 15). Their father, William (age 69) worked as a blacksmith in his own business. Their mother Mary (age 53) was not employed. Edith completed high school and at age 22 married Hans Max Wilkens (1877-1938). Edith had two daughters with her husband. She was living in Cleveland Heights, Ohio at the time of her death from breast cancer. She is buried in Chardon Cemetery. Edith’s occupation prior to her death is listed as “parking lot operator”. Here is some information about Edna Marietta McNaughton (1891-1964). She graduated high school and married David Elmer Shanower in 1913. The 1930 US census finds her living in Mentor, Ohio with her husband and five sons. The 1940 US census discloses that her husband worked as a truck driver and salesman. Edith is buried in Mentor, Ohio. Two images of both Edith and Edna taken during their childhood can be seen below.

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Reverse of the Cabinet Card


Edith McNaughton as teenager

46ff16e2-c954-44d9-b920-48382958a26aEdna as a teenager

500-1 Edna in 1897 (age 6)

7e0f3ecc-9bde-44e5-8848-404335f593b4Edith in 1897 (age 6)


armenian family

Somehow this photograph survived. It must have been an incredible journey through history and time. The image carries some scars. The borders of the photograph have been trimmed (probably to fit into a frame), and the photograph is a bit warped. Not terribly warped, but enough to be unable to lie completely flat on an even surface.  This great photograph would look even greater if it was framed. I suppose I have said enough about the condition of the photograph. This image is absolutely extraordinary. The Armenian family in this image may be one of the most expressive photographed families that I have seen in my many years of viewing historic photographs. This is certainly a family that does not hide emotions. The family is also beautiful and wonderfully dressed. I am having difficulty figuring out the family constellation. In my opinion, either the seven people in the photograph are all siblings, or the image captures a father, mother, and their five children. The father would obviously be the man standing in the rear of the picture. The mother, I hypothesize, is the seated woman. What is your theory about the family constellation of the subjects of this fascinating portrait? There is a note inscribed on the bottom left corner of the photograph. I do not know the translation. The previous owner of this image informed me that this family is Armenian in origin and the photograph was taken in Constantinople, Turkey in the 1920’s. It is important to remember the terrible holocaust that the Armenians experienced just before the time of this photograph. There was conflict between Armenians and Turks between 1892 and 1915. This resulted in the Armenian Genocide which occurred between 1915 and 1918. Estimates are that between .9 and 1.2 million Armenians were killed or deported because of alleged political and security considerations. By the end of the 1920’s, the only viable Armenian population left in Turkey was located in Constantinople. This photograph measures about 5 1/2″ x 7 1/2″.


Published in: on August 29, 2015 at 12:00 pm  Comments (2)  



This vintage real photo postcard features stage actress Miss Nina Cadiz and her mandolin. I am actually not sure that her string instrument is a mandolin and hopefully a musically informed visitor to the cabinet card gallery will correctly identify it. This postcard was mailed from England in 1906. The message on the postcard wishes the addressee a “very happy New Year”. The postmark is December 31, 1906 which may indicate the writer was a bit of a procrastinator. The postcard was published by Stewart & Woolf who were located in London. The postcard was part of a series (116)  and is numbered #50. A portrait of Miss Cadiz can be found in Britain’s National Portrait Gallery. The image can be seen below. Note that the photography studio that produced the portrait is Elliott & Fry, a name that should be familiar to frequent Cabinet Card Gallery visitors. Click on category Photographer: Elliott & Fry to view more of their photographs.


Nina Cadiz as Felice in 'The Little Minister', by Elliott & Fry, November 1897 - NPG x127904 - © National Portrait Gallery, London



An adorable young girl wearing ballet shoes, poses for her portrait at the Noble Studio in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The photographer posed her as if she was dancing. The bright eyed young girl has a terrific smile. The photographer of this image is Thomas Frederick Noble (1866-1932) and he operated a photography studio at various addresses in Grand Rapids. His career spanned between 1890 and 1931. The 1920 US census found him living in Grand Rapids with his wife Pauline (age 50) and two of their children, Fred (age 17) and Pauline (age 15). The 1900 US census reveals that he also had a daughter named Lily. Noble died in 1932 and is buried in Graceland Memorial Park in Grand Rapids.

Published in: on August 27, 2015 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Take a look at this rare photograph of the tower of babble. Not exactly the picture one would imagine from the book of genesis story about the origin of multiple languages. I am very curious about how the babies that comprise this tower maintain their position. It is possible that they are strapped into their seats by a hidden metal brace. It is also possible that there someone or even a couple of people hiding behind the children holding at least some of them in place. Both these methods were used in photographing young children during this era of photography. Whatever method was employed, the photographer did an excellent job of capturing all the children while they were paying attention to the camera. Note that a least two of the babies are holding toys. This vintage photograph measures about 6 3/8″x 12″. The photographer’s name and the location of the studio are unknown. The image was purchased from an antique shop in Vancouver, Britsh Columbia, Canada.

babies 2


Published in: on August 26, 2015 at 12:01 pm  Comments (1)  


austrian actress

This cabinet card features a beautiful young actress. I am hypothesizing that she is an actress based on her wardrobe and her great poise. The young lady is wearing a necklace and a jeweled hair band. Note her interesting footwear. She is standing by a faux pile of rocks in the Schuster studio which was located in Vienna, Austria. This cabinet card is not standard sized. It measures about 3 3/4 ” x 8 1/4″.

Published in: on August 25, 2015 at 11:53 am  Comments (2)  
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