MYSTERIOUS STAGE ACTRESS: HELENE VERDES

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This vintage real photo postcard features actress Helene Verdes. At least I think that she is a stage actress. Perhaps a cabinet card gallery visitor knows something about her and will leave some biographical information in the form of a comment. I tried to research her but drew blanks. The photograph of Miss Verdes is by Lucien Walery and he certainly is known for his postcard portraits of theatre performers. Miss Verdes apparently didn’t receive much fame from her theatrical endeavors despite her great beauty.  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. Apparently there is considerable debate about Walery’s actual identity. Some contend that he was actually Stanislaw Julian Ignacy Count Ostrorog, a British photographer of Polish ancestry who may have moved to Paris in about 1900.  This postcard dates back to the early 1900’s and was published by Marqus Etoile of Paris and is part of a series (no. 310).

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Published in: on December 22, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Comments (4)  
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PORTRAIT OF A STRIKING WOMAN IN EUGENE, OREGON

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The young woman in this post cabinet card era photograph is strikingly attractive. She has wonderful eyes. She appears to be a teenager. The striking young lady is wearing a high collared and ruffled dress as well as a necklace. The photograph was taken at the Winter Photo Company in Eugene, Oregon. The photographer, John A. Winter was born in Ohio sometime around 1831. He was active in the photography business in Eugene between 1864 and 1869, and again between 1873 and 1900. During his career he also operated photography businesses in Albany, Brownsville, and Jefferson; all towns in Oregon.In 1864 he advertised that he intended to “devote his whole time to making pictures”. In 1865 he began his career operating photographic studios. A number of times during his career he was plagued with poor health. At one point he owned a sheep ranch in addition to a photography studio. Winter employed the bartering system in his business. One of his ads promises to trade portrait taking for firewood. From 1888 to 1900, Winter was the photographer of Oregon State University. Winter’s son, Clarence L. Winter was a photographer in Eugene between 1891 and 1906. However, a letter from C. L. Winter appears in the Photographic Times (1887) indicating that he likely began working in Eugene earlier than the aforementioned date. It is not clear whether John A. Winter or Clarence L. Winter is the photographer who produced the picture of this lovely young woman. Perusing the Cabinet Card Gallery’s collection of photographs by Mr Winter, it is clear that he had photographic talent. This photograph measures about 4 1/4″ x 4 1/2″. To view other photographs by Winter, click on the category “Photographer: Winter”.

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PORTRAIT OF A MOTHER AND HER TWO YOUNG DAUGHTERS IN CAMBERWELL, ENGLAND

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This vintage real photo postcard presents a portrait of a mother and her two young daughters. Some may claim that this is actually a portrait of three sisters. I’m sticking to my interpretation, though I recognize that my hypothesis is debatable. The two young children are cute and appear unintimidated by the photographer or the photographic process. The older daughter is holding some flowers. This photo postcard was produced by Moore’s Studio which was located in Camberwell, a district in South London, England.

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Published in: on November 18, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“LITTLE MAY SABRINI”: PORTRAIT OF A CHILD ACTRESS IN ESCANABA, MICHIGAN

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This cabinet card portrait features a poised little girl posing behind a chair. She appears to be wearing a costume and is standing on a prop to gain some extra height. She appears to be an actress and an inscription on the reverse of the photograph supports that hypotheses. The inscription states “Little May Sabrini as Eva” and lists the girl’s age as 7 years old. The Stewart & Lokke (Oscar) studio produced this photograph and The Directory of Early Michigan Photographers lists the pair as conducting their photography business in Escanaba in 1890. The town of Escanaba was involved in some pretty interesting protective business practices focused on helping local photographers. The Bulletin of Photography (1913) reports on an interesting law passed by the city council in Escanaba. The politicians decided to charge itinerant photographers for coming to town and conducting business. Traveling photographers who took pictures in the town’s street were charged 1 dollar for their first days work and fifty cents each day thereafter. Photographers who used tents or temporary quarters were charged two dollars for the first day and a dollar for each successive day. If a traveling photographer used flash photography, a fee of five dollars for the first day and two dollars for each day thereafter was required. Any photographer that did not comply with the law would be subject to at least a hundred dollar fine or up to sixty days in the county jail. I wonder what it cost the local photographers to encourage city council to pass such an unfair trade law to discourage visits from itinerant photographers.

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Published in: on October 19, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Comments (1)  
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PORTRAIT OF A PRETTY PRINCESS: ROYALTY IN GARRETTSVILLE, OHIO

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This intriguing cabinet card portrait features a finely dressed beautiful young woman. She is absolutely charming. I wish I knew her story. She appears to be ethnic, perhaps Hispanic. She looks like royalty but what is she doing in Garrettsville, Ohio. Her dress is very unusual and special. I believe she is wearing a cape. Her hair treatment is very pretty. The photographer of this image is Crosby Marell French (1850-1932). He operated a studio in Garrettsville. Langdon Road, an online photographer directory, reports that he was in business in the 1880’s and 1890’s. French’s name is included in the 1870 directory of Hiram College. The school was located in Hiram, Ohio and a former student and teacher there, became President of the United States (James Garfield, elected 1880). In 1874, French married his wife Hannah (1852-1932). A photograph of Hannah can be seen below. The photograph was taken by her husband. French’s name appeared regularly in photographic journals including The Photographic Times (1883)The Photographic Times and American Photographer (1884), and Photographic Mosaics (1884). He wrote an article entitled “The Attractive Properties of  Photograph” which appeared in Photographic Mosaics. French is listed in US census data. In 1870 he worked as a clerk in a store. In 1880, The US census indicates that French lived in Garrettsville with his wife Hannah and worked as a photographer. In 1900, he was living with his wife in Binghamton, New York and still pursuing his career as a photographer. The same information appeared in the 1910 and 1920 census. By 1920, French was joined in his studio by his daughter Alice E. French. The 1930 US census revealed that C. M. French had retired. A photograph of Crosby French can be found below. The photo was taken by the Holcomb and French studio.

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 C. M. French                            Hannah French

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Published in: on October 15, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Comments (3)  
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PORTRAIT OF A YOUNG AND PRETTY FASHIONISTA IN NEUDEK, GERMANY (CARTE DE VISITE)

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This carte de visite photograph features a beautiful young girl dressed in the best of fashion. Her clothing indicates that she is from a family of means. She is wearing a stunning dress, a wonderful hat, and is carrying a parasol. She is wearing jewelry (bracelet, earrings) and appears in a manner that is very adult-like. This image reminds me of current day practices by little girl beauty pageants. The contestants, like the young girl above, are portrayed as miniature adults. This cdv portrait produced by photographer Franz Kostler who operated a studio in the town of Neudek. Today, Neudek is called Nejdek and is located in the Karlovy Vary Region of the Czech Republic. The name “Neudek” is of German origin and it is my guess that at the time that this photograph was taken, the town was part of Germany.

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HANDSOME SOLDIER AND HIS PRETTY WIFE IN READING, ENGLAND (VINTAGE RPPC)

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This vintage real photo postcard features a lovely couple. The handsome gentleman is in his crisp British military uniform and holding his hat at his side. Beside him is his pretty wife who is wearing an attractive long white dress along with a necklace and collar pin. The couple’s portrait was taken at Ward’s Studio in Reading, England. The postcard has excellent clarity.

 

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Published in: on September 25, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Comments (1)  
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“BEST TEAM EVER”: TEAM PHOTO OF A WOMENS BASKETBALL TEAM (1923 VINTAGE PHOTOGRAPH)

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This wonderful vintage photograph features a Womens Basketball team which apparently just completed a championship season. The image includes seven girls in uniform and their coach. Three of the girls are holding trophies. All of the girls look like their having a good time. There is an abundance of smiles as the photographer shoots his picture. Even the coach seems to be enjoying the moment. As customary, the basketball has been marked with the date. The girls are celebrating completion of the 1923 season. Their team’s name and their location are unidentified. This image is an important piece of womens basketball history. Note the girls uniforms and their sneakers. There appears to be some variety in their footwear. The reverse of the photograph has an inscription that must summarize the girl’s experiences as a member of the basketball squad. The writing happily declares “Ye Old Team….Best Ever”. This vintage photograph measures about 8″x10″.

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Published in: on September 5, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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ADORABLE LITTLE GIRL PUSHING DOLL IN A STROLLER WITH HER LOYAL DOG AT HER SIDE (VINTAGE PHOTOGRAPH)

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This wonderful vintage photograph features an adorable little girl pushing her doll in a three wheel stroller. Her dog is sitting, on alert, right next to her. The child is adorably dressed, note her decorative hat. The girl and the photographer are unidentified. The young girl appears to be somewhat overwhelmed, or intimidated, by the process of having her portrait taken. This image is probably from the 1910’s and it measures about 3″ x 6″.

 

Published in: on August 28, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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PORTRAIT OF A YOUNG WEDDING COUPLE IN SAALFELD, GERMANY

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This carte de visite is a wedding portrait that was taken by the Kratzert studio in Saalfeld, Germany. Like many wedding photographs of the time, we see the groom sitting and the bride standing. The couple appear to be relatively young. The pretty bride is wearing a wedding gown with a high collar. She is wearing a necklace and holding a bouquet of flowers. The groom is well dressed in his three piece suit and is displaying a poor version of a pensive expression. He appears to be uncomfortable, while his bride seems significantly more relaxed. The couple were photographed at a studio in the town of Saalfeld, which is the capital of the Saalfeld Rudolstadt district of Thuringia. The town is located in the valley of the Saale River.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Published in: on August 27, 2016 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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