This photograph features a woman in a bustle style dress posing for a full length portrait at the Gray studio in Omaha, Nebraska. The dress seems to play a more prominent role than the subject in this cabinet card image. In 1884 Howard E. Gray took over the Bee Hive Gallery at the address listed on this cabinet card. In about 1886 he changed the name of the studio to the H. E. Gray Studio. Omaha business directories indicate that he was operating a photography studio in Omaha from 1884 through 1896. The 1896 directory announces that Gray had moved to Houston, Texas. Research was able to pick up Gray’s trail in Houston. Business directories state that he was a photo retoucher in in 1897 and from 1899 through 1911 operated a photography studio. Research yielded no definitive information about his family. He may be listed in the 1900 US census but there is no confirmation that Howard E. Gray listed is the same Howard E. Gray who worked as a photographer. The 1900 census Mr. Gray was 36 years-old and married to Maggie Gray (age 38). The couple was married in 1885 and had a son named Elmont (age 12). Interestingly, the census Mr Gray was listed as working as a stenographer. To view other photographs by Gray, click on the category “Photographer: Gray (NE)”.
This Cabinet card is an image of a railway or trolley car worker. The badge on his cap is labeled “motorman”. If he worked for a trolley line, than he worked for the Omaha Cable Tramway Company which operated in Omaha between 1884 and 1894. Instead, he may have worked on a train belonging to the Union Pacific Railroad which was one of several railroads operating in Omaha, Nebraska. It would be great to read some comments from readers who may have expertise or knowledge concerning the railway history of Omaha. The photographer of this photograph is Gray, of Omaha. To view other photographs by Gray, click on the category “Photographer: Gray (NE)”.