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Tintype of girl holding a sleeping kitten

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    Posted 7 years ago

    scottvez
    (916 items)

    Cats are an unusual subject matter in 19th century photographs.

    This particular image is a ninth plate tintype and dates from about 1855- 1865.

    The details of the cat and lack of movement make this image very desirable among collectors.

    Reproduction of these images in any form is prohibited.

    scott

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    Comments

    1. filmnet filmnet, 7 years ago
      Really beautiful Scott!!!!
    2. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Thanks for looking film-- the hard images (dag/ ambro/ tin) of CATS are very hard to find. This is one of two that I found in the last couple of weeks--I lucked out!

      scott
    3. filmnet filmnet, 7 years ago
      Scott, Actually i am Steven
    4. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Got it-- thanks steven!

      scott
    5. Chrisnp Chrisnp, 7 years ago
      Knowing that there is a whole genre of Victorian post-mortem human photographs, and given that the cat stayed still for the duration of the exposure, I wonder if you have a "kitty in memoriam"!
    6. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      I guess anything is possible, but I have never seen a dead animal/ human image with the exception of hunter views and some odd animal taxidermy photos.

      scott
    7. Chrisnp Chrisnp, 7 years ago
      and some of the Victorian taxidermy stuff is very odd indeed
    8. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Here is a very odd taxidermy image that I picked up a few days ago:

      http://www.collectorsweekly.com/stories/132511-conjoined-lambs-cabinet-card?in=activity

      scott
    9. Virginia.vintage Virginia.vintage, 7 years ago
      This is very interesting, first time that I hear about, thanks for share.
    10. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      va-- I think that the cat is ALIVE, just sleeping.

      19th century images with pets are readily available.

      scott
    11. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Thanks for looking jewels.

      scott
    12. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Thanks nuts and david!

      scott
    13. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Thanks much for looking vetraio.

      scott
    14. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Thanks racer and buss.

      scott
    15. AmberRose AmberRose, 7 years ago
      Great image! I had a quick moment of thinking the cat was taxidermy prop as well. However, I've never seen that either. But those Victorians were a wacky lot
    16. Virginia.vintage Virginia.vintage, 7 years ago
      Oh yes, I think the lovely cat maybe its slepping in the girl´s arms.
    17. Vintagefran Vintagefran, 7 years ago
      Funny, when i saw this photo i wondered if it could be a post mortem photo. Not a nice thought if it is, so i shook it off, she looks so alive, but some do. If not she kept very still for however many minutes required. I've never seen one with an animal before. The taxidermy idea sounds completely plausible, morbid now, but it was once very common to have pictures of your dead loved ones in photos.
    18. Virginia.vintage Virginia.vintage, 7 years ago
      Yes Vintagefran... :(
      Both versions can be true really?
      Hard for modern times but normally in these days when post mortem photos were popular for example with children.
    19. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      My two cents on post mortem photography:

      All of the "post mortems" that I have seen where the subject looked alive; were due to the fact that the subject actually was alive!

      ebay is full of bs pm images-- represented as such by the unknowing or misrepresented by folks looking for a quick buck. The posing stand referenced as a "post mortem posing stand" is PURE MYTH.

      Seller's representation must be taken with a grain of salt. If the subject doesn't look dead, they probably are not.

      scott
    20. Vintagefran Vintagefran, 7 years ago
      Hi Scott, interesting. I saw the stands when looking into postmortem photography. Are you saying they're a complete fabrication?
    21. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      It is an "ebayism". Posing stands were made and used to hold the head still and could NOT support the weight of a body-- even that of a child.

      The myth is so prevalent that you will even find the stands identified as specific for post mortem photography and websites/ blogs where it has become an accepted fact:

      http://www.pinterest.com/pin/521925044289133472/

      One look at an early photographer's posing stand (posted above) reveals that it couldn't serve to hold up a dead person. Additionally, NONE of the original patent work on photographer's stands makes a mention of use on PMs.

      It is all complete BS. Remember just because it is online doesn't make it truthful.

      I have NEVER seen a standing PM in my life and I look at THOUSANDS of images every day and thousands of PM images in the course of a year!

      scott
    22. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      I did a search on ebay of "standing post mortem" and found 15 images (ALL ALIVE and ALL represented as possible pm) and two educational listings on post mortem photography.

      14/ 15 images SOLD at prices ranging from $10- $65. ALL of the images were actually worth less than $5. Folks see this junk selling and it encourages others enter into the fray. It also perpetuates the MYTH of the "DEATH STAND".

      The two educational posts are attempts to dispel the MYTH:

      http://www.ebay.com/itm/034-Standing-034-Post-Mortem-or-Not-Don-039-t-Be-Fooled-READ-THIS-/351145881009?pt=Art_Photo_Images&hash=item51c1ecedb1&nma=true&si=PID5%252BRc2QNEB3w4XvseFUrHPGAU%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc&_trksid=p2047675.l2557#ht_2820wt_1238

      scott
    23. Virginia.vintage Virginia.vintage, 7 years ago

      I followed the link, I watched one specially, the boy with flowers, similar at your post in the case and frame.
      Incredible and interesting scott.
    24. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      I didn't see the "boy with flowers" image-- it may be a pm.

      If he is standing-- then I'd say no without even looking.

      scott
    25. Vintagefran Vintagefran, 7 years ago
      Thanks Scott. Thats terrible! It really does illustrate you can't believe most of what you read! Looking at it with your insight it looks too weak to hold a dead body, like you say & has no supports. It makes far more sense that they were to help keep a subjects head still! I know not Everything online is true but i read up a bit on this and i believed it. Thanks for the education. You have a fabulous collection of photos & will take your word over online 'urban myths', i guess this is, any day.
    26. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Thanks fran! I appreciate your kind words.

      I am always willing to help out when it comes to antique images. I have learned some hard lessons over the years and do what I can to keep others from making the same mistakes.

      Often with images, it is just a case of seeing what you want to see. One of the biggest scams is the "looks like image"-- a small similarity and an antique image is represented as Abe Lincoln, Doc Holliday, the James Brothers......

      A search of big online auctions will usually turn up a handful of bogus IDd images with a handful of eager buyers.

      scott
    27. Vintagefran Vintagefran, 7 years ago
      No, Thank YOU Scott. I find the whole postmortem photo thing morbidly fascinating, & sure i did come across a few genuine ones. I thought the standing up 'dead' people looked very alive, now i know why, they were! Lol. Were glass eyes ever used do you know? Only i read that too.
    28. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Many photographers dot tinted eyes-- which makes them look rather odd in antique images. I wouldn't use strange eyes as a sole determiner for a pm image.

      scott
    29. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      Fran-- here is a great example of a rediculous "post mortem":

      http://www.ebay.com/itm/unusual-1-6-plate-TINTYPE-not-ambrotype-post-mortem-/161405089401?pt=Art_Photo_Images&hash=item25947e3679#ht_185wt_1238

      Seller has it at $125 bid or $199 buy it now. The child is very much ALIVE!!

      This image, if correctly represented as a hidden mother, would probably get $25- $50.

      It is a very nice and interesting "hidden mother" photograph!

      scott
    30. Vintagefran Vintagefran, 7 years ago
      Ahh, thanks Scott. I saw some of these 'hidden mother' photos described as PMs. One the mother (i assume) had a black sheet over her! Honestly, it didn't occur to me they were just holding the baby still. In the photo you linked to the child looks very much alive with his pouty expression, its slightly out of focus with movement too isn't it? I saw a couple which I'm sure were genuine, one of siblings around a dead child's bed, the living children's expressions were like they didn't want to be there & the 'sleeping' child didn't look quite right & was in sharp focus compared to the live kids. The glass eye thing, as i typed it, it didn't ring true to me, far easier to manually paint in eyes than try putting glass ones in a dead body & make it still look alive!
    31. Vintagefran Vintagefran, 7 years ago
      I find the whole field fascinating. I'd not come across the expression 'hidden mother' until now. It seems odd they went to such lengths to hide themselves.
    32. scottvez scottvez, 7 years ago
      fran, the "hidden mother" genre of photographs is hotly collected. Competition for a hard image (tintype/ ambrotype) of a mother hiding under a black cloth-- appearing somewhat ghost like, can drive them prices up to the $150+ range!

      scott

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