Thursday, February 9, 2012
So the last day I worked at the antique mall before my vacation, it was an amazing day Besides the fact that I had two really good friends dropped by to shop and work, my husband's cousin Karen also came in, on an important errand.
As it turns out, she and her husband, during one of their only visits to the antique mall Saturday, ran across this portrait. The woman looked familiar and it bugged Karen all weekend. It finally struck her that it was an ancestor of hers (and my husband, Scott's). She brought in a picture of this several generations removed great grandmother Elizabeth Partidge Tillotson Whiting, and we compared them and concluded the following.
Background: In the late 1800's cabinet cards were common. They were those photographs that came on a cardboard back board with the photographers advertising info on them. So people who wanted larger portraits to hang in their homes would take their cabinet cards to a charcoal artist who would do a rendering from the picture and then frame them in elaborate frames. It is my opinion that these are two charcoal drawings by two different charcoal artists of the same cabinet card. Notice that the dress collar, scarf inside the dress collar and the bar pin across the button placket are all the same. The artist on the left (the photo in the book that Karen owns) was clearly the better artist and included the details of her neck rather than just drawing her clothing to her chin, but I feel confident that they are from the same cabinet card. So honestly what are the chances that Karen would find an 'original' ancestral portrait at a local antique store. Pretty cool eh? And furthermore, what are the chances that I would be working the same day that she came in to buy it?
Of course it was fun to see Karen and get a chance to chat, that wasn't at a funeral, which seems to be the norm anymore. Enjoy that portrait Karen!