Older woman from Boston

What it is:

Cabinet card measuring 4.25 x 6.5 inches.

What I know about it:

Photographer is Hastings of Boston, Massachusetts (with a branch in Newport, Rhode Island, though I’m assuming this photo was taken in Boston).  Otherwise undated and unidentified.


I’m sorry, but I can’t stop staring at this lady’s chest.  Before you get the wrong idea, let me explain.  Between the lapels in that unusual fabric, the big buttons, the pin at her throat with dangly pieces, the commemorative cross attached with a ribbon (does anyone know what that is, by the way?) and the ruffly topping, there’s just so much to look at.  It’s so busy!  But it’s fun, too.  I wonder what special meaning that cross has to her.  I’m sure she wears it with pride.  I’m struck again by the fact that this is probably a photo of a person who predates photography itself.

2 comments on “Older woman from Boston”

  1. Okay, I too got all OCD about the medal on her bosom. Looking at different crosses, I thought it most closely resembled the Maltese Cross. Which lead me to the different organizations that use the cross. Nursing and ambulance seems to be the most common. So, I think our gal was a nurse. Looking into other work by the same photographer led me to Henry Clay Barnabee. But, that’s a subject for another OCD journey.

    • LOL, I know exactly how it is to get completely obsessed with figuring out some little detail like that. I realized I was never going to be able to read any markings on her cross no matter how big I blew it up. And a quick Google image search on the shape revealed so many similar shapes that I knew I needed to stop before I spent half the night on it. But thanks for your input!

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