ADORABLE TWIN GIRLS AND THEIR LITTLE SISTER (FEMALE PHOTOGRAPHER)……….AKA “LOVELESS IN CARLINVILLE”

This family portrait features adorable identical twin sisters and their younger sibling. The three children share the same face and hairstyle. Like many twins of today, these twins are dressed identically. The twins are holding hands and are standing in front of their sibling who is posed in a prominent position, centered and standing on a chair peering over her sisters shoulders. The photographer who created this photograph was Miss Trumbull of Carlinville, Illinois. The precious children in this photograph are identified on the reverse of the image. Their names are, from left to right, Lila, Georgia, and Lela Loveless. The U.S. census of 1920 sheds some light on the Loveless family. First of all, the family was far from loveless, considering that Cyness and Sarah Loveless had five children. The twins, Lila and Lela, and their little sister, Georgia, had an older brother named Lincoln and a younger brother (Mack) and younger sister (Sadie). It is interesting to note that the Loveless parents named a son Lincoln. The boy was born in 1896, and that despite the fact that three decades had passed since the civil war, the Loveless’s honored their native son assassinated President. After considering the census data, it is likely that this photograph was taken approximately 1904. By 1920, Lincoln Loveless, age 24, had joined his father working as a farmer. Unfortunately, research has not yet uncovered any information about the photographer of this image. Women photographers during this era were not common. Hopefully, a visitor to the Cabinet Card Gallery will be able to supply biographical information concerning Miss Trumbull.

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Published in: on December 23, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments (3)  
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  1. I think the photographer’s name is rather Turnbull: Actually there were two sisters Nellie A. (or R.) Turnbull (born 1877 or 78) and Nettie M. Turnbull (born 1874) who were active as photographers in Carlinville around 1900. I found this info in ‘Guide to the Julia Driver Collection of Women in Photography’ by Matthew Daniel Mason.

    • Thanks for correcting me on the name of the photographer. Visitors comments are very informative, interesting and important for fact checking, Armed with the correct name of the photographer, some biographical information about Nettie and Nellie Turnbull was uncovered. Nettie was born in 1874, and Nellie was born in 1877. They were born in Illinois to Robert and Clara Turnbull. Robert was a carpenter. Nettie and Nellie had an older brother (Everett), and two younger sisters (Ida and Carrie). The 1900 U.S. census reported that Nettie and Nellie were single and lived at home. They both worked as photographers. However, by 1910, according to that year’s census, their employment status changed. Nettie was unemployed and Nellie worked as a court reporter/stenographer, for a circuit court. The census of 1920 revealed that both woman remained single and Nellie remained employed as a court reporter. One wonders what happened to the photography business that the sisters ran when they were in their twenties. Perusing the photography magazines of the time, it is clear that they won some medals for their work. Their story is likely quite interesting but most of it is lost to history.

      • It’s really great to know a little more about their lives. I wonder what happened to them. Maybe a male photographer didn’t like the competitors. Women photographers were quite rare, although I have a CdV in my collection that was taken by a female photographer. What makes it more interesting to me: she took the picture of my great-grandfather (sometime between 1900 and 1910).


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