We've had this little picture for a long time - I'm not sure where it came from, most likely it was in an auction box lot. We've had it for sale way back when we had a store, and it was in a booth we rented forever. We don't have a store or rent a booth anymore, so now it's on eBay. If you're interested just follow the link to our store on the sidebar, then look in photographic images.
It's an interesting little picture, obviously 19th century, altho I don't know exactly when. Everybody, right down to the baby, has a hint of a smile, which is unusual for pictures made in that era. I've spent a lot of time looking at this picture, just trying to figure out what was going on, what the relationships were. The assumption is that it's a family, husband, wife, child - but that's just an assumption.
The woman looks physically bigger than the man - but that could be an illusion. The picture was taken outside, she may be a little closer to the camera than the man, or perhaps the ground isn't quite level. Also the man has close cut hair, while the woman's is swept back and extends out. The sleeves of her dress are kind of billowy (is that a word) too, and there's that dark cloth around her neck. Everything she's wearing makes her look bigger than she probably is.
The man of course has a heck of a beard and mustache. Though you can't really see his smile, you can see the amusement in his eyes. Did they just share a joke? Did the photographer say something funny? I wish I knew.
There is no information about these people on the picture. The only thing I'm sure about is that none of them, including the baby, are still living. I have no idea, but I imagine that baby grew up, had a life, got married, had children and grandchildren, perhaps great-grandchildren, and died as a very elderly person in the 1970s or so.
I wonder who they are and what they did. They mattered to somebody, they lived. They were young and strong when this picture was taken. They probably worked very hard, physically demanding jobs. They are most likely responsible for people who are living now, more than 110 years later. I'll never know. I'll have to be satisfied with wondering.