Tag Archives: Massachusetts

Carl E. Brown of Fitchburg, MA

Carl E. Brown. Moulton. Fitchburg. Mass. Cabinet card. Private Collection.

Carl E. Brown. Moulton. Fitchburg. Mass. Cabinet card. Private Collection.

I got this one thinking the boy had a scar on the right cheek. When I received it there was nothing…It must have been something on the seller’s scan. It’s one of those things that happen… :)

No matter, it’s still a great portrait.

I found Carl E. Brown on a 1920 census. He was born in Illinois circa 1879 and lived in Lunenburg, MA, a tiny little town right next to tiny little town Fitchburg where this picture was taken. Fitchburg and Lunenburg are about 40 miles west from Boston. He went on to marry a lady named Georgia M. from Vermont. With her he had two children, Thelma born in 1902 and Carl E. born in 1904.

This picture was taken when Carl was around twelve or thirteen in the early 1890s.

And finally, I get a cabinet card with an elaborate design on the back with lovely flower patterns and a camera vignette.

C.J. Moulton. Artistic Photography. Fitchburg, Mass.

C.J. Moulton. Artistic Photography. Fitchburg, Mass.

Boston’s ‘one of the Alleys’

Cabinet card. Private Collection.

Hardy. Boston. Cabinet card. Private Collection.

A possible Victorian gang member? This hatted young man from the 1890s is described as “one of the Alleys” on the back of the card. It seems to me the writing was added later on, perhaps by someone who knew not who, but what the person was part of. Sounds like a gang name to me, and the fact this card was made in Boston adds to the possibility. Well, in any case this handsome gentleman in profile was dressed to impress, and that’s one stylish hat on his head.

“One of the Alleys”. Boston. Hardy back of cabinet card.

Photographer: Hardy. 493 Washington Street. Boston. MA.

The 1870s Bostonian boy with the terrific eyes

CDV. Private collection.

1870s CDV of boy with intense stare. Private collection.

Once in a while I come across a special portrait that makes me go “wow”, then “hm…this looks like an old soul”. This picture captured the boy with the intense stare of somebody much beyond his years.


The card has round corners not shown here.

He was well dressed too, with a white ribbon tied like a bowtie. By the lapels and style of card I estimate this was taken around 1870 or in the early years of the decade at most. The front bottom was clipped to fit in an album.

Photographer: Warren’s Portraits. 465 Washington St. Boston. Massachusetts.

Creative Commons License

Doe eyed William B. Edgar from Fall River

William B. Edgar. CDV. Private Collection.

William B. Edgar circa 1880. CDV. Private Collection.

The signature was digitally added onto the photograph from a part of the sleeve that came with the CDV.

This gentleman from Fall River was born October 14, 1856 in Maine, of William Edgar and Marion E. Hanlon Buffinton. His father passed on February 3rd, 1858, leaving his mother to care for him alone. William Jr wasn’t even 2.

Not just a pretty face, he enlisted and went on to have a long military career, serving during two conflicts; the Spanish War and WWI, first as an ensign aboard the U.S.S Catskill and later on in life as the high ranked Lieutenant Commander of the U.S. Naval Training Camp in Hingham, Massachusetts. From 1918 to 1921 he was the Captain of the United States Naval Reserve Force.

He settled in his hometown where he also ran a firm, ‘Edgar & Buffinton’, selling electrical supplies like gramophones with his partner and family member, Elisha Wilbur Buffinton from his mother’s side, maybe a cousin.

William married Eliza Lord and had two children: William L Edgar in 1889 who unfortunately didn’t survive his first year, and a daughter in 1895, Marion L Edgar, who went on to live until 1956. His own wife tragically passed in 1889 at the age of 35, leaving him to mirror his own mother and raise his 3 year old daughter as a single parent.

He passed on November 17, 1938 having lived a full life to the age of 82.


Photographer: Gay’s Gallery of Art. Cor. Main & Borden St. Fall River, Mass.

His memorial at Find A Grave.

1905 worms and fleas in Massachusetts

Three-quarter portrait on RPPC. Personal Collection.

Three-quarter portrait on RPPC. Private Collection.

Cryptic message on front of RPPC. Personal Collection.

Cryptic message on front of RPPC. Personal Collection.

What would your reaction be if you received a postcard with this message?

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