THE YOUNGEST FASHIONISTA IN FRESNO, CALIFORNIA

The young girl seen in this cabinet card portrait is quite the fashionista. She is dressed to the max. She likely is a member of a wealthy family. Note her leather gloves and her complex bandage-like hair bow. The photographer of this lovely image is Edgerton Reyerson Higgins  (1845-1911) of Fresno, California. Higgins was born in Canada. His mother was Canadian and his father was from Connecticut. He attended high school and Business College in San Francisco, California. He helped out at the photographic gallery of his brother, Thomas J. Higgins while attending school. Higgins worked as a photographer in a number of California towns, including Sacromento, Snelling, Stockton, Merced, Hanford, and Fresno. He worked for at least two well known photographic studios, one of which is represented in the Cabinet Card Gallery collection; Bradley and Rulofson. The second famous  photography studio was Thomas Houseworth & Company. Click on the category Photographer: Bradley & Rulofson” to view their photographs. While working in Snelling, Higgins was quoted as saying he took “pretty pictures, even of ugly people”. This cabinet card is from Fresno and it appears that he worked there at two different times. He was there temporarily in 1879. This cabinet card was published during his second stint, which began in 1887. Higgins did much to help his community. In 1889 he was one of the principal founders of the Fresno Volunteer Fire Department, and from about 1889 until the early 1890’s, he served as chief of the department. In 1898 he renamed his gallery the “Rembrandt Studio” and a year later, entered a partnership with a photographer named Howland. The California Historical Society has a small collection of Higgins’s photographs. This cabinet card portrait has a name penciled on it’s reverse. I was unable to decipher the name. (SOLD)

“A JOLLY GOOD FELLOW” POSES FOR HIS PORTRAIT IN SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA (PHOTOGRAPH BY TABER)

A jolly looking man poses for a portrait at the studio of Isaiah West Taber (1830-1912), in San Francisco, California. The happy gentleman has a wonderful mustache and earns the right to join other men with remarkable mustaches in the Cabinet Card Gallery’s category “Mustaches (Only the Best)”. Taber was a well known daguerreotypist, ambrotypist and photographer who photographed many California notables. Taber was also a sketch artist and a dentist. He was born in New Bedford, Massachusetts. Between 1845 and 1849, he worked on a whaling ship. He moved to California in 1850 and returned to the east, four years later. Upon his return, he opened a photography studio in Syracuse, New York. In 1864, he returned to California where he worked in the studio of Bradley and Rulofson until 1873. To view images by Bradley and Rulofson, click on the category, “Photographer: Bradley & Rulofson”. In 1871, Tabor opened his own studio and became famous for reproducing the photographs of well known California photographer, Carleton Watkins. Watkin’s business had gone bankrupt, and Taber reproduced his work without giving Watkins any credit. In 1880, Taber took a six week photographic trip to Hawaii. During part of that trip, he fulfilled his commission to photograph King Kalakaua. By 1890, Taber had expanded his operation to include studios in London and other parts of Europe. However, the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, put him out of business. The natural disaster destroyed Taber’s studio, gallery and negatives.