ca. 1870-90s,  [tintype portrait of a travelling salesman with tinted glasses and a suitcase full of wares]
via  Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1870-90s,  [tintype portrait of a travelling salesman with tinted glasses and a suitcase full of wares]

via  Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1860s, [carte de visite portrait of four blind musicians]
via KaufmaNelson Vintage Photographs

ca. 1860s, [carte de visite portrait of four blind musicians]

via KaufmaNelson Vintage Photographs

ca. 1880s-1900s, [cabinet card, portrait of a bespectacled, possibly blind gentleman with no hands, posed with his young partner and a new invention called the ‘Peerless Steam Cooker.’ ]

 According to Kovel’s, “Charles E. Swartzbaugh founded Peerless Cooker Co. in Buffalo, New York, in 1884. He invented both a steam cooker and a ‘fireless cooker.’ By the early 1900s, the company moved to Toledo, Ohio, and was renamed the Toledo Cooker Co.”   This is most likely a salesman’s sample of this pristine model.  The young man holds a small piece of the equipment…[and] a manual for the steamer in his other hand.  On the floor in a black salesman pack is another flyer and a book with a partially title visible which starts with word “Money”; quite possibly a self-help book on sales and success.

via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards

ca. 1880s-1900s, [cabinet card, portrait of a bespectacled, possibly blind gentleman with no hands, posed with his young partner and a new invention called the ‘Peerless Steam Cooker.’ ]

 According to Kovel’s, “Charles E. Swartzbaugh founded Peerless Cooker Co. in Buffalo, New York, in 1884. He invented both a steam cooker and a ‘fireless cooker.’ By the early 1900s, the company moved to Toledo, Ohio, and was renamed the Toledo Cooker Co.”   This is most likely a salesman’s sample of this pristine model.  The young man holds a small piece of the equipment…[and] a manual for the steamer in his other hand.  On the floor in a black salesman pack is another flyer and a book with a partially title visible which starts with word “Money”; quite possibly a self-help book on sales and success.

via Capitol Gallery, Cabinet Cards

ca. 1860-70’s, [carte de visite portrait of two well-armed frontiersmen in winter garb including snowshoes, with bed rolls, knives, and revolvers; both wear snow goggles]
via  Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1860-70’s, [carte de visite portrait of two well-armed frontiersmen in winter garb including snowshoes, with bed rolls, knives, and revolvers; both wear snow goggles]

via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1850’s, [daguerreotype portrait of a gentleman, presumably blind, wearing darkened glasses]
via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography Collection

ca. 1850’s, [daguerreotype portrait of a gentleman, presumably blind, wearing darkened glasses]

via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography Collection

ca. 1860-90, [hand tinted tintype portrait of a gentleman, possibly blind, with tinted glasses and an open leather satchel] 
via Artfact, Swann Auction Galleries

ca. 1860-90, [hand tinted tintype portrait of a gentleman, possibly blind, with tinted glasses and an open leather satchel]

via Artfact, Swann Auction Galleries

ca. 1860-1880, [tintype portrait of a bespectacled and bearded gentleman wearing a rich paisley robe, a floral cap and a large, hand-tinted cravat]
via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1860-1880, [tintype portrait of a bespectacled and bearded gentleman wearing a rich paisley robe, a floral cap and a large, hand-tinted cravat]

via Cowan’s Auctions

ca. 1840’s, [daguerreotype portrait of two women embracing, one wearing tinted spectacles]
via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographics, Skylight Gallery

ca. 1840’s, [daguerreotype portrait of two women embracing, one wearing tinted spectacles]

via Christopher Wahren Fine Photographics, Skylight Gallery

ca. 1890’s, [cabinet card, unusual portrait of a bespectacled gentleman holding both a cat and a dog], Home Photo Co. 
via Carl Mautz Vintage Photography, Cabinet Card Collection

ca. 1890’s, [cabinet card, unusual portrait of a bespectacled gentleman holding both a cat and a dog], Home Photo Co.

via Carl Mautz Vintage Photography, Cabinet Card Collection

ca. 1855, [daguerreotype portrait of a elderly woman holding spectacles with a young girl who appears to be cross-eyed]
via the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Cased Photographs Collection

ca. 1855, [daguerreotype portrait of a elderly woman holding spectacles with a young girl who appears to be cross-eyed]

via the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Cased Photographs Collection

ca. 1860-90’s, [cabinet card of two women sitting at a table examining a starfish and other specimens using magnifiers], J.R. Thomas
via the Wisconsin Historical Society

ca. 1860-90’s, [cabinet card of two women sitting at a table examining a starfish and other specimens using magnifiers], J.R. Thomas

via the Wisconsin Historical Society

ca. 1859, [daguerreotype portrait of a bespectacled gentleman, handwritten on verso: “Present from dear George”]
via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography Collection

ca. 1859, [daguerreotype portrait of a bespectacled gentleman, handwritten on verso: “Present from dear George”]

via the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Photography Collection

ca. 1856-1910, [tintype portrait of a young lady wearing spectacles]
via Harvard College Fine Arts Library, Special Collections

ca. 1856-1910, [tintype portrait of a young lady wearing spectacles]

via Harvard College Fine Arts Library, Special Collections

ca. 1860, [carte de visite portrait of a woman, possibly blind, wearing dark glasses and a plaid dress], J.P. Blessing & Co. 
via the Southern Methodist University, Lawrence T. Jones III Texas Photography Collection

ca. 1860, [carte de visite portrait of a woman, possibly blind, wearing dark glasses and a plaid dress], J.P. Blessing & Co.

via the Southern Methodist University, Lawrence T. Jones III Texas Photography Collection

ca. 1870, [carte de visite portrait of a woman, presumably blind, with dark glasses], J. P. Blessing & Bro.
via the Southern Methodist University Library, Lawrence T. Jones III Texas Photography Collection

ca. 1870, [carte de visite portrait of a woman, presumably blind, with dark glasses], J. P. Blessing & Bro.

via the Southern Methodist University Library, Lawrence T. Jones III Texas Photography Collection

"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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