Meet Grandma Clark

Today’s cabinet card has been labeled “Grandma Clark”.

What I immediately notice about this card is that it is a bit blurry and oddly looks like the surrounding background may have been “photoshopped” out.  I also noticed that her hair is parted with a high bun (like the 8th picture on this page) and her sleeve seam appears to be lower down her arm.  The hair and clothing styles tell me that is was possibly taken in the late 1860s to early 1870s and the blurry, cropped look suggests a reprint.  But, perhaps, after learning about the practice of reprints, I’m now seeing it every where!

Grandma Clark, Murillo, 1314 Olive St., St. Louis

The photographers stamp is at the bottom of the card, which was common in 1866-79.  That fits with my idea of this being a late 1860s to early 1870s photo.  I looked up the photographer but all I could find was a reference to the photographer being at the Olive St. location in the years 1910, 1915 and 1919.  The author of this page cautions that the photographer may have been in the posted location on dates other than what was listed but he had found no verifiable proof.  These listed dates neither prove or disprove my dating theory.

So here is my theory.  The photo was taken in the late 60s or early 70s.  I’m thinking it may have been a group shot.  A short time later, perhaps a year or two, the photo was reprinted with Grandma Clark cropped and enlarged.  This would explain the slightly blurry aspect to the photo.

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