Faded festivity

This cabinet card came to me from Spokane, Washington, but it has nothing written or printed on it to indicate its origin.  The costumes might be Norwegian (or Norwegian-American).  The faded sepia print doesn't do them justice, but it's all that remains of their beauty and artistry.    

The artist in the mirror (Adolphe Braun)

This carte-de-visite is part of a series called "Costumes de Suisse," published around 1869 by French photographer Adolphe Braun (1812-1877).  Braun's studio was in Alsace, France, in the village of Dornach, near the borders with Germany and Switzerland.  Each photo in the series presents a young woman in a traditional costume from a particular Swiss... Continue Reading →

Musician with Tanjore tambura

This 19th-century photograph was printed on very thin paper and glued to a stiffer paper mount.  At some point the mount was trimmed to the dimensions of a postcard, possibly so that it would fit into an album.  The back is blank.  I bought it from a dealer in Suffolk, England, who couldn't tell me... Continue Reading →

The new dress

The day of the party has arrived.  She and her friends have been working on their dresses for weeks. "Let's take pictures!" "I don't know, I have a lot of things left to do.  Maybe later." "It'll only take a few minutes to set up the camera.  We might be too busy later." "You're right. ... Continue Reading →

Swedish secrets

This carte-de-visite was made by Jacob Lundbergh (1828-1904) in Stockholm.  According to his Swedish Wikipedia page, he worked as a professional photographer for eleven years (1861-1872), becoming famous for his portraits of actors, singers and other cultural figures.  His brother, Bernhard Lundbergh, was an opera singer with the Royal Theater.

Elfenreigen (Dance of the Fairies)

The closest English equivalent of the German word Elfenreigen would be "fairy round dance," although Elfenreigen is also sometimes translated as "dance of the elves."  "Carlsberg" may have been the location where this photo was taken.  A very kind visitor to the blog (bradwardine42) left a comment under the post with the following information: I... Continue Reading →

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