Four 1880s Brattleboro cadets 

1880s cadet buddies. Caleb L. and John C. Howe. Brattleboro. Cabinet Card. Private Collection.

These four teens from Brattleboro, Vermont were most likely cadets, maybe in a marching band?

Photographer Caleb Howe chose to take this picture horizontally, preferring to catch the boys in close-up. One of them is smiling and the others seem comfortable in front of the camera.

The card has yellowed with the passing of time.

Back of card.

Caleb Howe & Son. Back of card.

Photographer: Caleb Lysander Howe & Son (John C. Howe). Brattleboro. Vermont.

Caleb Lysander Howe (1811-1895) was a highly respected photographer in his home state of Vermont. He began his craft on the road in the late 1840s. During the Civil War he photographed a great number of soldiers who queued at his studio door for a chance to get their portrait taken. He also photographed Union General John W. Phelps on a card with the similar backing.

Howe’s son joined him in the business in the early 1880s. Since his initials appear on that cabinet card as well as the one I have I believe these were made a couple of decades after the war, by the end of the general’s life who passed in 1885.

Caleb Howe was also a singer and musician. There is a page dedicated to his life that is worth a look. There you can see the John W Phelps card.

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4 responses to “Four 1880s Brattleboro cadets 

  • Linda

    Great photo, I like that the photographer took it in landscape. The uniforms are awesome :-). The photographer is interesting!

    Liked by 2 people

  • richholschuh

    Nice info on Caleb Howe! I am a Brattleboro resident and come across his name often; I believe he had his studio on Main Street. My guess is that the young men pictured were cadets at Burnside Military School, which was at the former Wells residence on Upper Dummerston Road, just north of town. It operated, to the best of my knowledge, from 1859 til 1881, when it was purchased by the Brattleboro Retreat and converted to a summer residence for female patients. The lads pictured may have been one of the last classes enrolled there.

    Liked by 1 person

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