Dating old english photos
Cabinet cards, popular in the late 1800s, are easy to recognize because they are mounted on cardstock, often with an imprint of the photographer and location just below the photo.There are similiar card-type photographs, such as the smaller which was introduced in the 1850s, but if your old photo is about 4x6 in size then chances are it is a cabinet card.This is a good question but photographic evidence suggests that in many cases even humbler working ancestors followed the latest styles.By the time photography reached a mass market in the 1860s, the concept of fashion was already well-established and was widely understood across the social spectrum.Of course, there were exceptions to this general principle.Like today, some of our forebears were more interested in their personal appearance than others, spending proportionately more of their income on new clothes and accessories.
Many young adults followed fashion closely, while the more mature might wear a modest, toned-down version of the most extreme styles and the elderly generally dressed much more conservatively than the youth of their day.
It was, therefore, the quality of fabric and extravagance of trimmings that distinguished the dress of the affluent from that of the poorer classes – not in general its basic cut or shape.
A domestic servant, for example, could appear superficially similar to her more affluent mistress.
The vast majority of antique photographs taken in the 19th century were one of the following types.
CLICK ON EACH type to see detailed characteristics.