Tag Archives: Texas

Frozen in time by ‘The Elliotts, Makers of Pictures’


The Elliotts – Austin, TX.

The Elliotts, Makers of Pictures photo studio was owned and operated by a couple, Martyn (1871-1936) and Jane (1871-1955), of 814 Congress in Austin, Texas. Jane, sometimes referred to as Jean or Jeannie on family documents, was a full partner – a rare and uncommon practice at the time!

Martyn and Jane were both 30 when they moved to Austin in 1901, and opened their studio. It remained successful until the Great Depression when Martyn’s increasingly failing health, and the poor economy pushed them to sell the business and negatives to Jensen Studios and Student Publications.

During their years as co-owners they managed to land exclusive contracts with the State of Texas’ legislature and the University of Texas annual where their daughter, Sarah Pelham Elliott, graduated in 1929 with a degree in stenography.

Was this serious looking teen a University of Texas student? Was it Mrs. Elliott he saw behind the camera?

As all good photographers, Jane must have had a knack for making people comfortable in front of the lens. I imagine she must have had to work hard to assuage preconceived notions, and to gain and maintain a successful, professional and personal reputation in an era when women were not expected to own businesses, and especially not in a field traditionally occupied by men.

She should have seen mindsets slowly changing from the 1900s to 1930s, with  women gaining the right to vote in 1920,  around the middle of her career.

And photographs speak for themselves. This nice shot would have made a fine class portrait in the ’20s to mid ’30s.

Source: Sanders and Elliott Family Papers

Oscar Jainer

Decar Jainer with Newspaper. RPPC. Private Collection.

Oscar Jainer with Newspaper. RPPC. Private Collection.

Oscar posed with a rolled newspaper in hand, sitting on a backless chair and small foot stool (?) to prop him higher. The back has a note left by a girl named Jewel. “Daddy, hurry and come and see me for I am lonesome. Jewel.”

What a sad note…

This RPPC is *beat up* but had potential. I’m quite happy with how it came out. It was cut and framed which left residue on top of the picture itself. It also has some ink and other various stains.This is the original, untouched:

Untouched RPPC.

Untouched RPPC.

Photographer: Vinock’s Studio. Beaumont. Texas. AZO 1904-1918.

The 1944 U.S Army Air Force pilot

June 8, 1944. Snapshot. Private Collection.

June 8, 1944. University of Missouri. Snapshot. Private Collection.

These two photographs are of the same pilot. The captions are annotations found on the back. We have dates and places. This pilot wrote everything but his name…On the first he’s at the helm of a single engine civilian airplane even though he’s wearing his uniform. I’ve tried to make out the model but can’t. On the second I see what looks like barracks behind him. Texas was the state for the USAAF to train during WWII. Well, at least we know he made it through!

August 3, 1945.

August 3, 1945. Texas. “Crazy with the Heat”. Snapshot. Private Collection.

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