Woman with vase

The unidentified young woman in this photograph is wearing a drop-waist dress and a Marcel Wave hairstyle, hallmarks of the flapper era of the 1920s.  The photograph is about the size of a postcard, but it was printed on plain photo paper, rather than postcard stock.  It came to me from a dealer in Pennsylvania who often... Continue Reading →

A brush for your thoughts

This small tintype portrays an unusual subject for early photography: a standing woman appears poised to brush the hair of a seated woman, who has a comb and other items in her lap.  The standing woman is looking down and is slightly out of focus, while the seated woman is looking in the general direction... Continue Reading →

Women outside a factory

March is Women's History Month in the United States.  (International Women's Day isn't widely observed here, although that may be changing.)  For the past two years, I've tried to pick out a photograph in March which I thought was especially relevant to the theme of women's history.  In 2018 the focus was on education (Caliopians). ... 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 →

Four young women with Union Jack

These college-age women have a determined air about them, as if they're on a mission.  They've arranged themselves around a pedestal with a Union Jack flag draped over it, adding a patriotic aspect to the portrait and perhaps suggesting political activism.  Were they participants in the women's suffrage movement?  What does the ribbon on the... Continue Reading →

Caliopians

March is Women's History Month in the United States, and I've been thinking about which photographs might best fit the theme.  Any consideration of Women's History has to encompass a wide variety of fields, including domestic and family life, education, work outside the home, intellectual and creative achievement, and the social reform movements.  All of... Continue Reading →

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