PORTRAIT OF A PRETTY AND FASHIONABLE YOUNG WOMAN IN LEWISTON, MAINE

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The woman in this vintage photograph is both beautiful and well dressed. She exhibits an engaging smile as she poses for her portrait at the studio of H. Larocque in Lewiston, Maine. She is wearing a high collared dress and holding flowers in her lap. She is likely wearing a corset judging by her tiny waist. The photographer of this image is Henri Larocque (1859-1922). He was born in Quebec and died in Lewiston. He was married to Mary Hinse Larocque (1867-1956).Henri is listed in city directories as a photographer at least as early as 1887. The 1920 US census also lists him as a photographer along with his son George (age 33) and daughter Emmilene (age 31). Henri and his wife are buried in St. Peter’s Cemetery in Lewiston.

 

 

Published in: on July 1, 2015 at 11:55 am  Comments (1)  
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A BEARDED GENTLEMAN IN GREENFIELD, MASSACHUSETTS

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This cabinet card portrait features a bearded gentleman posing at the Dunklee and Bau studio in Greenfield, Massachusetts. The man has a long wiry beard and an intense expression. Advertising on the reverse of the cabinet card states that the Dunklee & Bau studio had won medals at a 1890 Greenfield exhibition. Charles Dunklee was born in Rockingham, Vermont in 1842. He served four years in Company I of the 4th Vermont Infantry during the civil war. He entered as a private and was mustered out as a private. He was the Vice President of his regiments veteran group according to an 1887 news article. In 1865 he married May C. Billings and they were married 54 years until her death. Dunklee’s 90th birthday was marked in the Lewiston Daily Sun (1932). The article notes that he had photographic studios in Greenfield and Northfield, Mass. as well as Brattleboro, Vermont. This cabinet card was produced by Dunklee while in partnership with Charles Bau. The Bulletin of Photography (1914) notes that Bau had sold his studio in Brattleboro, Vermont in order to return to Greenfield to open a new photographic gallery. The article points out that Bau had left Greenfield just twelve years before. The aforementioned history tells us that this photograph was taken after 1890 and before 1902.

MAE BRANSON: PROVOCATIVELY POSES IN CHICAGO, ILLINOIS

A sexy, busty, and leggy, blonde Mae Branson poses for celebrity photographer, William McKenzie Morrison, in Chicago, Illinois. The photographer’s studio was located in the Haymarket Theatre Building. To learn more about this well known photographer, click on the category “Photographer: Morrison”. A stamp on the reverse of this photograph indicates that the cabinet card  was formerly owned by Culver Pictures. Culver was located in New York City, and for a fee, provided images to newspapers, films, and other forms of media. Research yielded little biographical information about stage beauty, Miss Branson. The National Police Gazette (1892) reports the bathing exploits of four actresses at Long Brauch. The article was written in poetry form and the verses included the following lines: “and in the surf she daily dips in jaunty bathing dress; That fits her like a glovelet – not an inch the more or less”. The actresses described were Minnie Seligman, Geraldine McCann, Della Fox, and Mae Branson. The site of the sexy swimming exhibition was likely Long Branch, New Jersey;  “Long Brauch” was likely a misspelling. It appears that MTV’s reality TV show, “Jersey Shore“, is a remake; because there seems to have been plenty of provocativeness at the Jersey Shore in 1892.  Mae Branson’s name also appears in an article in a Maine newspaper,  The Lewiston Daily Sun (1893). The article appeared in the Music and Drama section. A review of the play “1492” describes Miss Branson as exhibiting “agreeable singing and artistic work” which obtained “prompt and hearty recognition”.

PRETTY WOMAN IN LEWISTON, MAINE

This photographic portrait features a pretty young lady posing for her portrait at the Flagg and Plummer gallery in Lewiston, Maine. The subject has quite the sour expression on her face. She looks exasperated, as if she has spent more time and effort at the photographer than she cared to. A pencilled inscription on the reverse of the photograph reveals that the Flagg and Plummer studio was the successor to the Curtis and Ross studio. The  notation also discloses that the young woman in this photograph was named Florence L. Bisbee and that the image was produced in 1899. According to the U.S. Census of 1900, Florence Bisbee was born in 1877 and lived in Auborn, Maine. She lived with her father (Byron), mother (Adiline), and two older brothers. Florence worked as a dry goods clerk, her father was a grocery clerk, and her brothers worked as shoe cutters. By the 1910  census, Florence was employed as shoe stitcher and in the 1920 census she was still living with her parents at the age of forty-three. The 1930 census found her as a head of household and  living with an older woman. She was still a shoe stitcher. Very little information could be found about this photographs creators.  The Flagg and Plummer studio is mentioned in an article in The Bulletin of Photography (1915) concerning the formation of an advertising group of photographers.

Published in: on December 19, 2011 at 12:01 am  Leave a Comment  
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YOUNG WOMAN: SALVATION ARMY WORKER IN LEWISTON, MAINE

A young woman poses for this Cabinet Card photograph at the studio of I. L. Hammond in Lewiston, Maine. She is wearing the attire of the salvation army and is holding a tambourine. Note her bonnet and the structure of the dress which creates the appearance of a thin midriff. One of Hammond’s photographs appears in the autobiography of Marsden Hartley (1877-1943) who was an American modernist painter, poet, and essayist in the early 20th century.