LADY AT THE CROSS IN NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE

This cabinet card requires some interpretation. A young woman is posed standing next to a cross. Her hand is touching the cross. She appears to be dressed in an outfit from another era, or perhaps she is wearing her night clothes. Where is the cross supposed to be located? Is it a gravestone in a cemetery? Is it a symbol outside a church? Another possibility is that the woman is an actress and the image shown originates from her role in a play. The photographic studio that produced this image,  is W. G. and A. J. Thuss, of Nashville, Tennessee. William Gustave Thuss (1854-1943) came to Nashville by 1875 and created several partnerships. He was partners with Charles Parel (1878), Emil Koellein (1880), and Thus, Koellein and Gierss 1883-1889). In 1889, William joined his brother Andrew Joseph Thuss (1866-1950) in starting their own studio. The pair prospered and photographed many of the dignitaries who lived in, or visited, Nashville. Work from the studio won many awards, and a studio was established in 1897 at the Tennessee Centennial Exposition. In 1917, the brothers split up. Each one operated what they called the “original” Thuss studio. The brothers relationship remained damaged for many years, illustrated by the report that when William Gustav Thuss  was on his death bed, his brother never visited him.

Published in: on August 19, 2011 at 12:01 am  Comments (1)  
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PORTRAIT OF A SOUTHERN BELLE IN NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE

A pretty woman poses for her portrait at the Schleier studio in Nashville, Tennessee.  The brooch on her lace collar indicates that her name is “Mattie”. She is also wearing a triangular brooch that appears to have a rose motif. Theodore M Schleier was a photographer is New Orleans between 1850 and 1860. He operated in Nashville beginning 1860. In New Orleans, he had a photographic gallery on Chartres Street, in 1857. At the beginning of that year, he was assaulted and badly injured when another New Orleans photographer, James Andrews, kicked in the gallery door, and attacked him with a poker. Andrews also destroyed much of Schleier’s equipment. Schleier’s name appears in a number of photography journals, including Anthony’s Photographic Bulletin (1886), where there is an announcement that his Nashville studio was for sale.

TWO GENTLEMEN LOOKING IMPORTANT IN NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE

This cabinet card is an image of two gentlemen dressed warmly in overcoats, hats, and gloves. They exude an air of importance. The photographer is Mahon & Taylor of Nashville, Tennessee.

Published in: on May 29, 2010 at 12:01 am  Leave a Comment  
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