ca. 1880s, [cabinet card, cigarette advertisement]
via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographs

ca. 1880s, [cabinet card, cigarette advertisement]

via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographs

ca. 1870-90s, [cabinet card, portrait of a man in a wonderful paisley costume]
via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards & CDVs

ca. 1870-90s, [cabinet card, portrait of a man in a wonderful paisley costume]

via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards & CDVs

ca. 1870-1900s, [photographer’s advertising card, featuring a clown wearing cabinet cards and a young girl holding a banner], Ed W. Hans
via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards & CDVs

ca. 1870-1900s, [photographer’s advertising card, featuring a clown wearing cabinet cards and a young girl holding a banner], Ed W. Hans

via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards & CDVs

ca. 1880s, [gilded tintype portrait of a lounging gymnast or circus artist]
via Be-Hold, from Invaluable Auctions

ca. 1880s, [gilded tintype portrait of a lounging gymnast or circus artist]

via Be-Hold, from Invaluable Auctions

ca. 1870-90s, [carte de visite portrait of two circus performers]
via Yale University, Collection of Western Americana, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Carl Mautz Collection
ca. 1860s, [carte de visite portrait of three young circus performers in costume]
via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards

ca. 1860s, [carte de visite portrait of three young circus performers in costume]

via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards

ca. 1888, [cabinet card, portrait of vaudeville performer “Blanca”], J.C. Schaarwächter 
via Luminous Lint, LL/14252, from the Private collection of T. Max Hochstetler

ca. 1888, [cabinet card, portrait of vaudeville performer “Blanca”], J.C. Schaarwächter

via Luminous Lint, LL/14252, from the Private collection of T. Max Hochstetler

ca. 1890, [cabinet card, portrait of dancer Miss Murdock, in a lovely costume], Moreno & Lopez of New York
via Luminous Lint, courtesy of Ohio State University, Jerome University Library, Charles H. McCaghy Collection of Exotic Dance from Burlesque to Clubs

ca. 1890, [cabinet card, portrait of dancer Miss Murdock, in a lovely costume], Moreno & Lopez of New York

via Luminous Lint, courtesy of Ohio State University, Jerome 
University Library, Charles H. McCaghy Collection of Exotic Dance from Burlesque to Clubs

ca. 1881, [carte de visite portrait of Gus Grab, champion athlete], “Won by Mr. Gus Grab/Amateur. Championship of New York”
via the Addison Gallery of American Art, Phillips Academy, Andover

ca. 1881, [carte de visite portrait of Gus Grab, champion athlete], “Won by Mr. Gus Grab/Amateur. Championship of New York”

via the Addison Gallery of American Art, Phillips Academy, Andover

ca. 1887, “Dramatis Personae…Fancy dress party,” [cabinet card, group portrait of four men; two dressed in formal attire, the others wear dresses hats, wigs, and stockings], Thomas D. Bowring
via the Wisconsin Historical Society

ca. 1887, “Dramatis Personae…Fancy dress party,” [cabinet card, group portrait of four men; two dressed in formal attire, the others wear dresses hats, wigs, and stockings], Thomas D. Bowring

via the Wisconsin Historical Society

ca. 1860-80s, “Sheridan & Mack, clog dancers,” [carte de visite portrait of two vaudeville dancers], Gurney & Son
via the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Jerome Robbins Dance Division,  Treasures of the American Performing Arts 1875-1923 

ca. 1860-80s, “Sheridan & Mack, clog dancers,” [carte de visite portrait of two vaudeville dancers], Gurney & Son

via the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Jerome Robbins Dance Division,  Treasures of the American Performing Arts 1875-1923 

ca. 1870-1900s, [cabinet card, portrait of Eva Slater wearing an Egyptian inspired stage costume], Webster & Albee.
via the New York Public Library, Jerome Robbins Dance Division, Treasures of the American Performing Arts 1875-1923

ca. 1870-1900s, [cabinet card, portrait of Eva Slater wearing an Egyptian inspired stage costume], Webster & Albee.

via the New York Public Library, Jerome Robbins Dance Division, Treasures of the American Performing Arts 1875-1923

ca. 1870-1900, [carte de visite portrait of circus performer in an unusual costume]
via Jeffrey Kraus, Antique Photographics

ca. 1870-1900, [carte de visite portrait of circus performer in an unusual costume]

via Jeffrey Kraus, Antique Photographics

ca. 1880-1910, [cabinet card advertisement, portrait of a banner lady for “Criswell & Miller Hardware”], Enslow
via Luminous Lint, Private Collection of Laddy Kite

ca. 1880-1910, [cabinet card advertisement, portrait of a banner lady for “Criswell & Miller Hardware”], Enslow

via Luminous Lint, Private Collection of Laddy Kite

ca. 1880s, [cabinet card, portrait of actress Isabelle Urquhart in witch or sorceress costume, posed before a dark, Romantic backdrop], Falk
via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographs, Skylight Gallery: 36

ca. 1880s, [cabinet card, portrait of actress Isabelle Urquhart in witch or sorceress costume, posed before a dark, Romantic backdrop], Falk

via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographs, Skylight Gallery: 36

"Until the handkerchief of history covers us with its Times New Roman black and white post script..."

This blog is a collection of vernacular photography and ephemera focused mainly within the curious and often misunderstood realm of 19th century America. I have a soft spot for all things silly, antiquated, macabre, and grotesque. The content is from a variety of collections; public, academic, and private. In addition, there's an occasional emphasis on Ulysses S Grant and the Civil War, as well.

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Browse by Photograph Type: Tintypes, Daguerreotypes, Ambrotypes, Carte de visites, Albumen prints, Cabinet cards, Silver prints

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