A pretty young lady poses for her portrait at the George M. Bretz gallery in Pottsville, Pennsylvania.The woman has a serious facial expression. She is beautifully dressed. She is wearing a dark dress, dark gloves, and is holding an umbrella. She is certainly a fashionista. Her dark manner of dress may indicate that she is wearing a mourning dress.  George M. Bretz (1842-1895) is a well known and acclaimed American photographer. He is best known for his photographs of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Coal region as well as for his portraits of coal miners. This cabinet card is in very good condition (see scans). The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History and the University of Maryland both have collections of his photographs. His images were displayed at the World Expositions of 1884 and 1993. Bretz built the reputation of his being an authority about coal mining. Many articles about his photography were published. This cabinet card portrait is in very good condition (see scans).


Buy this Vintage Cabinet Card photograph (includes shipping within the US) #5120

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Buy this Vintage Cabinet Card photograph (includes shipping outside the US) #5120

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Published in: on February 4, 2023 at 12:44 pm  Leave a Comment  
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OTTOMWA FAMILYA young couple poses with their baby at the studio of White and Hugus in Ottumwa, Iowa. The couple are well dressed and the family is nicely posed for their portrait. The husband is sitting on an interesting and ornate seat (prop). The woman has her hand affectionately placed on her husband’s shoulder and the husband keeps a careful hold on the couple’s extremely alert baby. No information about the photographers was found in  preliminary research. The town of Ottumwa is in southeast Iowa. It was a coal mining town. The state mine inspector reported that there were  15 mine shafts in the town in 1889. From 1890 through 1892 an exhibition center was built in the town. It was called the Coal Palace. Perhaps the gentleman in this photograph was associated with the mining industry.

Published in: on May 13, 2013 at 12:01 am  Leave a Comment  
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A young witch prepares for take-off with her trusty broom. The photograph must have been taken around the time of Halloween. In reality, this photograph is a portrait of a young child posing with a broom. The child’s clothing, though appropriate for the era, resembles the garb of a witch. The child is wearing a necklace and a bracelet which favors the likelihood that the child is a girl. The photographer of this image is B. A. Ford of Braidwood, Illinois. Ford was a photographer of note in Illinois. He was a documenter of the early history of coal fields in his town. In 1879 he advertised for an apprentice for his busy studio. Many of his subjects were miners or members of miner’s families. In an 1885 ad he offered to give free advice to his customers so that they may learn the art of hand tinting. Ford’s community of Braidwood was located 53 miles southwest of Chicago, Illinois. In 1864, a family digging for water, found coal and soon a mining community sprouted. The town was called Keeversville. James Braidwood was an early resident and he became the superintendent of the sinking of the first deep mine shaft. In 1873, the town was named in his honor.