Woman at a spinner’s weasel

Have you heard the term spinner's weasel?  I hadn't until a few days ago, when I started researching the photo above.  The photo is slightly smaller than a cabinet card and more square.  I would tentatively date it to the 1890s (+/- 10 years).  On the back, a previous owner wrote the word Shaker, referring... Continue Reading →

Ready for the call?

In the first comment under the previous post, Shayne Davidson said the nurses' uniforms reminded her of the BBC series Call the Midwife.  Her comment made me look anew at the photo above, which also came from the United Kingdom, and wonder if the young sitter might have been preparing to work as a midwife or... Continue Reading →

Love in silhouette

This carte-de-visite came to me from England (Northamptonshire), but it has nothing written on it to identify the sitter or photographer.  The photo (print) was cut into an oval shape and glued onto a paper mount with an oval frame design already printed on it.  Such cartes were generally made after someone had died, as... Continue Reading →

Poised and confident in Porto, Portugal

I found this carte-de-visite for sale in Massachusetts, which is the state with the second-highest number of Portuguese Americans (after California).  Who was this elegant young woman, posing confidently at an instrument a century and a half ago?  And what kind of instrument was it, exactly?  It looks too narrow to be a piano, yet... Continue Reading →

Ann Birkin, chevener to Queen Victoria

The woman in this carte-de-visite portrait isn't identified anywhere on the photo.  When I bought it last year, I never expected to learn her identity.  Three weeks ago, while browsing the website of Britain's Royal Collection Trust, I noticed a woman who looked very familiar.  The first thing that drew my attention was her shawl,... Continue Reading →

Henry Lenthall, early British photographer

The man above is Henry Lenthall (1819-1897), a photographer who operated a studio at 222 Regent Street, London, where the photo was printed.  The studio had been established in 1856 by pioneering daguerreotypist William Edward Kilburn (1818-1891), when Kilburn moved there from his original (smaller) studio at 234 Regent Street.  In 1862 Kilburn retired from... Continue Reading →

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