A few months ago a photo dealer in Arkansas listed the contents of a small 19th century album on eBay. The original owners of the album weren’t identified, but some of the portraits had the names and addresses of photographers printed on them. The studios were located in Mobile and Talladega, Alabama.
Some of the portraits had a dark red border around them, and one of those had lettering at the bottom which identified it as having been made at the studio of Reed & Wallace in Mobile. Other portraits had the same red border but no lettering on them. I’m assuming that those–including the one at the top of this page–were also made by Reed & Wallace in Mobile.
It was common in the nineteenth century and into the twentieth for young children of either gender to be posed with toys or stuffed animals. Little girls were frequently posed with their dolls. In the CDV above and just below, the girl is also holding a branch resembling staghorn sumac, which would indicate late summer or fall. Could it have other significance?
The following CDV appears to contain the same girl, maybe a bit younger. In this one I think she’s posing with her little sister, whom we’ll see more of in the next post.