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Old portrait of important man

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Photographs2176 of 5172Route 66 Oro Grande CASOUTH SIDE FORT WORTH BASEBALL TEAM PHOTO
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    Posted 8 years ago

    (23 items)

    I recently purchased this old inscribed portrait picture and have been trying to identify who he is... The picture is signed but I can't make out the last name. I'm guessing "John Bowman or Bourman" but I can't seem to find any info on either. I'm also trying to understand why someone would inscibe and sign a picture of themselves if they weren't of importance or relatively famous? Which leads me to believe this person is of significance in one way or another. The photo appears to have been taken by Underwood & Underwood New York...Does anyone recognize this person or can tell me anything about who is? Maybe someone with better eyes can read his signature? Any help would be much appreciated.

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    1. junkcollector junkcollector, 8 years ago
      He looks familiar, but I can't give you a name. [Is that a microphone by his head?] Date-wise, however, apparently Underwood&Underwood closed their doors in the 1940s. They used to do stereographs, but later moved into other types of photography. I'd love to know if Bess is Bess Myerson. Though the dates are possible, it's probably unlikely...but still, it'd be an interesting twist.
    2. junkcollector junkcollector, 8 years ago
      Interesting observation...World Fair was also in NY around this time...that could complicate things.
    3. antiquerose antiquerose, 8 years ago
      Could the relation be??

      There was a 1953 Bowman NBC TV Television Radio Star (collectible card type) and Besse Myerson was on it?? (Radio and TV Stars) type of Cards

      Found on Net she worked at NBC ??

      So maybe something there connects? Bowman --> There are Bowman Collectible Cards? Was there a TV show called Bowman TV Stars and Radio?? As I found Collectible cards called "Bowman Television and Radio Stars" with people like Bob Hope, etc.....

      so maybe some kind of connection there:

      Here is a Sample of a Bowman Card for a Movie/tv star:

      So is he ( Bowman ) that might have had something to do with Bowman collectible cards? I do not know.....but there were Bowman Collectible cards done for Movie Stars and Radio that Might be the connection.

      Just throwing it out there.........?

      **If nothing else -- I did a lot of typing for nothing........ROFLMAO
    4. Redsox81, 8 years ago
      Wow, thanks for all the help. I too at first thought maybe the glass was signed rather than the picture itself... I took it out if frame and appears that the photo does have the writing on it, I just think the photo has been framed for so long that some of the ink tranfered over to the glass. I took another picture of the signature out of frame so that maybe it Will be easier to read... Does everyone concur that The signature does in fact read "John Bowman"? If, in fact he is a John Bowman I did find a tad of info but nothing resulting as to why he would sign his name to his own picture as if he were a rock star... I just don't get why an "average" person would do that, If in fact he was no one of great importance...
    5. junkcollector junkcollector, 8 years ago
      I'm not convinced it's Bowman, though that could be one option. This one has flouncy writing. At first I thought Bess was Ben... Is the thing in the top right a reflection of the camera or something in the shot. If it's in the shot, I still think that should be a clue---and if it's a microphone, that would match to some extent with a radio/television host as described above. Unfortunately 50s seems late for the photography company, but there's always life before famous life, so that option isn't impossible.

      I found this new hint... --- Maybe this guy was on Broadway. Lots of folks were on Broadway. Again making it tricky, but again, could be a lead...
    6. junkcollector junkcollector, 8 years ago
      I'm stuck...I checked silent film actors, voice-over people, Broadway actors, radio personalities (and politicians, prominent businessmen, etc)...reality is - it could be someone who went to NY to act but never really made it, but Bess was nice enough to ask for a headshot. Good luck in your search. You have a good mystery.
    7. scottvez scottvez, 8 years ago
      As a collector/ dealer of photographs, I can tell you that it is very common to find inscribed photographs from average people. I see them all the time in 19th century to late 20th century images.

      While there is a chance he is someone of minor importance, it is far more likely that he was an obscure 20th century man who simple decided to give and memoralize a photograph to his friend Bess or Ben.

    8. antiquerose antiquerose, 8 years ago
      Also just a thought....who know IF John was his first name. Lots of time people use their second name as their first name.

      His name could have been (****JUST A FUNNY EXAMPLE*****) like:

      Edward John Bessman...............but he went by just John. So we may never know IF that is the case of him using his second name.

      ....but I will add.....the Image does look familiar ????

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