Man from Binghamton, New York

Click here to view it larger.

What it is:

Cabinet card measuring 4.25 x 6.5 inches.

What I know about it:

Photographer is George N. Cobb of Binghamton, New York.  It is undated, but the date can at least be narrowed down to the years Cobb ran his studio in Binghamton, which were 1870-1903.  Written on the back, and presumably the name of the sitter, is either George E. Norrill or George E. Worrill.  I can’t quite decide which spelling it is, but hey, now that I’ve figured out how to link to an additional image, you can look at the handwriting and decide for yourself by clicking here.


I would normally have looked at this tie and thought it was mistakenly askew, but I’ve been seeing this look so often in photos of that time, I’m starting to wonder if it wasn’t an actual style.  After all, this looks like a man who takes care about his appearance.

8 comments on “Man from Binghamton, New York”

  1. impressive moustache!

  2. I’ve seen ties askew like that before, too and assume it’s on-purpose. I wonder if it was akin to today’s men’s fashion to have a 5-o’clock shadow. An assertion of male privilege, in other words.

  3. re: Tie askew on purpose
    my world is rocked!
    re: handwriting
    Could it be an H?

    • I’ll have to post another one with a crooked tie. It looks so wrong to our modern eyes! And as for the handwriting, it could be. It’s not even sloppy handwriting, and yet I’m still having a hard time figuring it out.

  4. Saw a tie in something like this style on Downton Abbey. So it must be a’purpose. I like to imagine the origin of this style. Some lord accidentally made an appearance with his cravat askew and everyone took up the fashion?

    • Could be. That makes as much sense as anything. Perhaps they were trying to mask the lord’s humiliation, or perhaps they actually thought it was an intentional new fashion. Either one sounds plausible.

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