This vintage real photo postcard features a pretty performer named May Hart. She is holding an interesting parasol over her shoulder. It certainly won’t keep her dry in the rain. I have had a difficult time finding biographical information about her. Interestingly, there was another actress named May Hart who was a witness to a very historic event in American history. An actress named “May Hart” was performing in “Our American Cousin” the night of Abraham Lincoln’s assassination at Ford Theater. Lincoln was killed in 1865, Forty-four years before this postcard was mailed. Looking at the youthful appearance of Miss May in this photograph, it is clear that she is too young to be the same May Hart.This postcard was published by the Philco Publishing Company which was located in London, England. It is part of a series (no 3435E).The postcard was postmarked in 1909.    (SOLD)                                                                       


Published in: on January 4, 2019 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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LINCOLN BETHROVEDA couple pose for their wedding portrait in Lincoln, Illinois. The photographer is E. B. Core. The bride is wearing a dark wedding dress and the groom is wearing a corsage. The story behind how Lincoln, Illinois received its name is quite interesting. The town is the only town named for Lincoln before he became President of the United States. He worked as an attorney in the town between 1847 and 1859. The town was named Lincoln in 1853 and during the ceremony, Abe Lincoln christened the town by pouring watermelon juice on the ground. When it was originally proposed to name the town after Lincoln, Mr Lincoln stated that he was against the idea and that in his experience, “Nothing bearing the name of Lincoln ever amounted to much”.

Published in: on July 14, 2013 at 12:00 am  Comments (1)  
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LINCOLN FAMILYThis cabinet card features a family portrait of a mother and father with their two adult sons and their young daughter. The family is well dressed. The father has a terrific beard and mustache.  All three men in the image display the chains from their pocket watches. The photograph was produced by the Tandy studio in Lincoln, Illinois. An inscription on the reverse of the image identifies one of the subjects as “Mr Fred Kemmer, 612 College Avenue, Lincoln, Illinois”. Research has provided some information about the family pictured in this cabinet card photograph.The father in this image is Mr.Fred Kemmer (1846-?). He was born in Germany. The mother in the photograph is Hannah Kemmer and she was six years the junior of her husband Fred. The 1880 US census finds Fred and Hannah living in Mount Pulaski, Illinois with two sons and a daughter. The children were named Fred (age 6), Ella (age 3) and Charles (age 2). The 1900 census notes that Fred and Hannah were living in Lincoln with a daughter named Lucy (age 14) and that Fred Sr.was listed as working as a “landlord”. The children seen in this photograph are likely Fred, Charles and Lucy. Research also revealed information about Fred W. Kemmer Jr. (1873-1944). He was born in Lincoln and died in Mt. Pulaski at age 71. He was educated  through the fourth grade. He was married in 1899 to Carrie Backle (1877-1951), who was a Nebraska native. Fred was a farmer. The 1900 census revealed that he lived in Mt. Pulaski with his wife and 8 month old daughter, Beattrice. He still lived in Mt. Pulaski at the time of the 1940 census. The photographer of this image is Walter S. Tandy. A large collection of glass plate negatives taken between 1880 and the early 1900’s is curated by the Lincoln Heritage Museum at Lincoln College in Lincoln. Tandy’s death, at age 83, is announced in the Bulletin of Photography (1918). Most people would guess that Lincoln, Illinois was named after Abraham Lincoln but few would surmise that the town received it’s name before Lincoln became President. The town was named Lincoln in 1853.  Abe Lincoln had practiced law in the town between 1847 and 1859.


deep concentration_0001George Hadley of the Castle Studio produced this portrait of a woman in deep concentration. She is studying what appears to be a small framed photograph. One of her hands rests on a table. The table top holds an inkwell. Printing on the reverse of the cabinet card indicates that the studio had won prizes at exhibitions at Cornwall (1884), London (1884), and Northampton (1884). The studio was located in Lincoln. Lincoln is a cathedral city and county town of Lincolnshire, England.

Published in: on February 22, 2013 at 12:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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An adolescent girl poses for her photograph at Kelley & Company of Lincoln, Nebraska. The curly haired girl is wearing a lace collared dress and a collar brooch and rope chain necklace.  H. W. Kelley’s photography studio is listed in the Lincoln business directory of 1887.

Published in: on January 5, 2013 at 12:01 am  Comments (1)  
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This cabinet card captures a little girl’s love for her younger sibling. The younger child appears to have no time for love during the  photographic process. In fact, the child looks a bit afraid and troubled by the activities occurring in the photography studio. The photographer of this image has the last name of  Drewitt and his studio was located in Lincoln, Nebraska. Research yielded no information about the photographer.

Published in: on October 18, 2012 at 12:01 am  Comments (3)  
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A couple and their two young children pose for the photographer at the “The Two Johns” studio in Lincoln, Nebraska. The couple is dressed in western clothing. The woman’s outfit looks suspiciously like a salvation army uniform. The woman is holding an umbrella. The little girls couldn’t be sitting any closer. Their straw hats can be seen on the floor. Note how elaborate the backdrop is in this photograph.

Published in: on July 9, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments (2)  
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Benjamin Wade: American Civil War Senator and Anti Slavery Figure (Photographed by Matthew Brady)

ben-wadeBenjamin Wade (1800-1878)) was born in Massachusetts. He worked as a laborer on the Erie Canal, taught school and then studied and practiced law in Ohio. As a member of the Whig Party he was elected to the Ohio State Senate and served two terms. He later became an Ohio court judge. Wade joined the Republican Party and in 1851 was elected to the US Senate. He became a Radical Republican along with Thaddeus Stevens and Charles Sumner. He fouhgt against the Fugitive Slave Act and the Kansas-Nebraska Act. He was very radical and supported women suffrage, trade union rights and equality for African Americans. In 1861 as chairman of the Committee on Territories he witnessed the defeat of the Union Army at the First Bull Run and was nearly captured by the confederates. During the American Civil War, Wade was extremely critical of Lincoln. After the war he pushed for African American units in the Regular Army. He was also instrumental in the impeachment of American President Andrew Johnson. Wade was considered by some as a good choice for Ulysses S Grant’s running mate but Grant refused. This cabinet card is from Matthew Brady’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C..

Pullman Car Conductor: Boston Railroad Worker


This photograph is of a Pullman Car Conductor. The photographer is Gray of Boston, Massachusetts. The Pullman Company manufactured railroad cars beginning in the mid to late 1800’s. In 1898 Robert Todd Lincoln, son of  Abraham Lincoln, became President of the company. I am hoping someone can help me identify the name of the railroad that employed this conductor. Take a close look at his collar buttons and try to identify the railroad by the insignia, or perhaps you have knowledge about  Boston’s railroad history. To view other photographs by Gray, click on the category “Photographer: Gray (MA)”.

Published in: on December 10, 2008 at 4:58 am  Leave a Comment  
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