YOUNG MAN WITH A HANDLE BAR MUSTACHE AND A TONSORIAL CRISIS IN COLUMBUS, OHIO

This cabinet card portrait features a dapper young man with a handlebar mustache. Unfortunately, the handlebar needs alignment; one tip points down, while the other seems to have fallen creating a tonsorial crisis. Note the width of the gentleman’s necktie.This photograph was taken by Urlin & Pfeifer’s Mammoth Art Palace in Columbus, Ohio. Urlin and Pfeiffer are no strangers to the Cabinet Card Gallery. The gallery has photographs by Urlin and Pfeifer as individual gallery owners; as  well as multiple images taken during their partnership.  John A. Pfeifer (1859-1932) was active in the Columbus area from 1882 to at least 1913. For much of that time, he was partners with George C. Urlin (1854-1942). Urlin was active in Columbus between 1873 and 1887. The reverse of this cabinet card offers an interesting back stamp that highlights some of the medals the pair received for their photographic work. The latest date noted on these medals is 1887, which reveals that this cabinet card was photographed sometime during or after 1887. The advertising also notes that the firm was established in 1873. 

PORTRAIT OF AN AUSTERE GENTLEMAN WITH A HANDLEBAR MUSTACHE AND WIFE AND TWO DAUGHTERS

This vintage real photo postcard features a family posing for their portrait and a photographer’s studio. The backdrop in this photograph is quite detailed. All four family members are well dressed. The two daughters are wearing similar but not identical dresses. The father in this family seems quite severe. He is also fashionable and well coiffed. Note his handlebar mustache. The writing on the reverse of this postcard is in German and from the best I can tell, the writer is simply sending greetings to someone.

THEO SPARKS: A HANDSOME YOUNG MAN WITH A HANDLEBAR MUSTACHE

An inscription on the reverse of this image indicates that this handsome well dressed young man was named Theo Sparks. He looks quite spiffy with his winged collar shirt, wide tie, and handlebar mustache. The photographer was not identified nor was the location of the photographer’s studio. Despite a paucity of information, research found some biographical information about Mr. Sparks. Theo Sparks (1870-1956) was born in Indiana. The 1880 US census finds him at age 10, living in Linton, Indiana.He lived with his parents, Peter S.  and Mary E. Sparks. His father was a farmer. He  lived with four older siblings, Iris (age 18), Orian (age 17), Ishmel (age 14), and Pascal (age 12). He also lived with three younger siblings, Marco (age 8), Eura (age 6), and Cush (age 2). Also living with the family was Theo’s fraternal uncle, Wesley Sparks. Theo and his siblings had very unusual and interesting names. Peter and Mary Sparks deserve kudos for their creativity in baby naming.The 1900 census finds the 29 year-old Theo Sparks living in Denver, Colorado and newly married to Maud Sparks (age 24). He was working as a motorman. According to the 1910 census, Theo and Maud still lived in Denver and had four sons, Rolland (age 8), Warren (age 5), Glen (age 4), and Jorville (age 3 months). It seems Theo and Maud continued Theo’s parents tradition of giving some of their children unusual names. Theo supported his family with his income from working as a street car motorman. The 1920 through 1940 censuses indicate that Theo and Maud continued to live in Denver with different members of their family being part of their household in each of the censuses.

Published in: on November 25, 2012 at 12:01 am  Comments (6)  
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HANDSOME AFRICAN AMERICAN MAN IN SEDALIA, MISSOURI; OR QUINCY, ILLINOIS

This Cabinet Card features a very handsome African American gentleman with a terrific handlebar mustache. He is very well dressed and has short parted hair. This man has movie star good looks before the era of  movies. The photographer is Fritz, who had studios in both Sedalia, Missouri, and Quincy, Illinois.

IS THIS GUY A FAMOUS ACTOR OR DOES HE JUST LOOK LIKE ONE?

This is another Cabinet Card which presents some mystery. Emil Scholl is the Philadelphia photographer who took this image but who is this interesting looking gentleman. On the reverse of the card is the scribbled name of what looks to be “Charles Thomas” or “Charles Thome”. Both names are names belonging to actors of this period.  The Cabinet Card Gallery includes images of actors photographed by Scholl . Even if the subject of this photograph is not an actor, the image has great clarity and presents an imposing man with much character. Note the handlebar mustache.