*** English families -- 1860s

English Families: The 1860s

English families 1860s
Figure 1.--We are guessing the individuals in this CDV are brother and sister. We thought it might be a boy and his governess, but the girl looks just aittle too young. The boy wears a cut-away jacket and long trousers. The girl wears a large hooped skirt. We are not entirely sure of how this worked when she went to sit down. Notice the boater-style hat and shirt ribbon.The photographer here was Bennett who had studios in both Worcester and Malvern. The CDV is undated, but looks like the 1860s to us.

We begin to see really large numbers of portraits in the 1860s a a result of the CDV. This was a negative based process and proved enormously popular. The negative pricess permitted the prining of duplicates and prining on paper substantially reduced the cost of a photographic portrait. We see a rang of different fashions. Younger boys wore dresses. Tunics seem less popular than in the 1850s. Many boys wore suits with cut-away jackets with trousers of the same color and material. This was not very common in the 1850s. Younger boys mifgr wear bloomer knickers. Most boys wore long pants. Boys by their teen years wore mpre adult styles suits. All girls wore dresses. Large hoop shirts were popular, but younger girls tended to wear more moderately sized skirts.

Unidentified Family (1860s)

The CDV portrait shows a mother with her four children. The portrait is undated, but we would guess was taken in the 1860s, primarily because the dress styles look more like the 60s than the 70s. The children look to be about 4-13 years old. They are not identified. There is obviously one boy and two girls. The younger child is more of a question. At first glance you would assume the child is another girl. We suspect, however, the child is a boy, probably about 4-years old. There are several reasons for thinking this. First, his hair is parted at the side like his big brother. Note his mother and sisters have center part. Second, the rss is a plaid-like print. This was popular for boys' dresses, presumably because of kilt associations. Third, unlike his sisters, he does not have a necklce. Fourth, his panatelettes seem more like pants or in British parlance, trousers. Notice the studio backdrops. America CDVs in the 1860s did not have such elaborate bakdrops. This may mean that the portrait was talen in the late-60s, but the dresses look more like the early-60s.

Unidentified Family (1860s)

Here we see an English family with the brothers wearing the juvenile cut-away jacket suits. The English family here was from Eton or Oxford. The photographer was Hills & Saunders from Eton & Oxford. The boys wear matching suits with cut-away jackets. These suits were often worn with small white collars. Modest neckwear was optional. Notice the matching jackets and bloomer knickers. The boys here wear small little tied bows. The photograph is undated, but we would guess the 1860s.

Cattley Family (1860s)

This family CDV studio portrait is we think an efort to depict an English beach scene, but it could have been taken outside. Notice the donkey and wooden spades. There is no studio information. While it is not dated, it looks like the 1860s to us. Mother has an impressive hoop skirt. We are not sure about the children. The one with the plain hat may be a boy. They look ti be about 2-4 years old. This is apparently the family of Henry Richard Cattley (born st Petersburg Russia 1818) family. The mother may be Mary Ann Wilks (born Russia 1818 - died 1895). We are unsure about the Russian connection, but the image could not be more British.

Cambridge Family (1860s-70s)

A HBC reader has acquired a wonderful Carte de Visite album from an English fmily duing the 1860s and 70s. All the subjects are identified by Christian name and the date the photo was taken. Unfortunately, the family surname does not appear anywhere in the album. It does look like a prosprous family, but thatis all we know about it. Most of the photos were taken in Cambridge so I would assume the family resided in that area, some of the later ones (circa 1873) were taken in Brighton, possibly on vacation. This was a typical large Victorian family. he two boys were Bertie and Allan. Thre were also photos of five sisters as well: Florrie, Connie, Nellie, Grace, and Ethel.

Capper Family Album (1860s-90s)

The family photograph albumn, in propsperous families several alnums, was one of the most prized possessions of any Victorain family by the 1860s. As such surviving albumns are wonderful historical documents. A British reader informs us, "I purchased another antique photograph album a few days ago which has some interesting images within it. The album is leather bound with an embossed cover and was given to Mary Ella Capper on the 19th November 1872, there are 125 carte de visites and 16 cabinet cards in the album, mostly images of the Capper, Hardcastle, Mathews and Birt families ranging in date from 1863 to the 1890's and almost all identified and dated. I'm not certain of the connection between the Mathews family and the other families in the album but there are clear connections between the Hardcastle-Capper family and the Capper-Birt family. In particular, Mrs Eliza Capper is the sister of Mr John Hardcastle, Mary Ella Capper (the daughter of Eliza Capper) married Daniel Birt."

Unidentified Hastings Family (1860s)

Here we have what looks like a happy Hastings family. The CDV portrait is undated,but looks like the 1860s to us. We are not sure about the social standing. They look be living in comfotable circumsances, but not well-to-do. The father in particular does not look to be fashionably dressed. The cut-away jacket suit I do not think would have been worn by someone with a contemporary fashion sense. This is not a fashion we have note being worn by American men at the time. But perhaps readers will know more about this. They are a very young family. The children look to be about 1-5 years old. Notice that the boy wears a long pants suit even though he looks only about 5 years old. he wears a standard cut-away jacket with long pants. This is a good example as to how long pants were still standard boys wear in the 1860s. Shortened-length pants existed at the time for boys his age, but were most common among fashioable well-to-do families. The studio was F.S. Mann in Hastings.

Frome Family (1860s)

Here we see a CDV portait of a very large family with young children. There are six childrn, mostly boys. They look to range from 1-10 years old. It is not common to see so many young children spaced so closely together. All we know for sure is that they were from Frome in Somerset. They look to range from 1-10 years old. he CDV is indated, but looks like the 1860s to us. The children wear dresses and knee pants suits. we can tell by the ages that mother breeched the boys at about 4 years of age. The two children at the far left we believe to be boys and close in age, probanly 3-4/5 years old. Ome wears a dress and the other a knee pants sailor suit, a good example of an early sailor suit. Thus the practive in the family was to breech the boys at about 4 years old. The two older brother wear cut-away jacket knee pants suit. Notice how long the knee pants are. We see mostlu long stockings, but the boy wearing the dress wears white socks. The girl at rught wears white long stockings and pantalettes. Most of the children wear hightop shoes, we think button shoes. The boy at left wears strap shoes. The studio was Munro in Frome.

Grange/Smith Yorkshire Family (1860s)

Here we see a CDV portrait of an redoubtable English mother with her two sons. It is possible that the lady is their grandmother. There is some disagreement over who they are. The name written at the bottom is Mrs. [Lusile?] Wildon Grange and her 'two youngest sons'. The dealer, however, reports that she is actually Elizabeth Smith n�e Fawcett (1816-1900) with her two sons. They are Thomas Fawcett Smith and Robert Alfred Smith. They look to be about 6-11 years of age. The boys wear matching cut-away jackets vested suits with bloomer knicker pants. The boys also have the same small collar and bows. The portrait is undated, but looks like the 1860s to us. The studio was Wilson in Slingsby. This is a village in the Ryedale district of North Yorkshire.

Unidentified Brother and Sister (1860s)

We are guessing the individuals in this CDV are brother and sister (figure 1). We thought it might be a boy and his governess, but the girl looks just aittle too young. The boy wears a cut-away jacket and long trousers. The girl wears a large hooped skirt. We are not entirely sure of how this worked when she went to sit down. Notice the boater-style hat and shirt ribbon.The photographer here was Bennett who had studios in both Worcester and Malvern. The CDV is undated, but looks like the 1860s to us. The boy has short hair and the girl ringlet curls. They look about 10-13 years old.

Unidentified English Brothers (1860s)

This CDV portrait of three brothers is undated. It looks like it was tken in the 1860s based on the pose and the style of the mount. Although the 1870s is possible, the fact that the boys are wearing plain tunics we think argues more for the 1860s. All three boys seem to be wearing tunics with small white collars and neckwear. The older boy's outfit is less clear, but we think it is also a tunic. Tunics seem to have been quite fashionavle in Britain during the 1860s. We see fewer tunics in America. We are not sure about the color of the tunics, but we would guess either black or dark blue. The older boys wear light-color trousers, probably flannel trousers. The younger boy wears dark knee pants that match his tunic. One notable aspect of the portrait is the younger boy's knee pants. They are cut above the knee which was not common in the 1860s. He is holding is hat which looks like a boater with a short streamer. We are not sure what kind of headwear the older boys wore. Notice the snake belts they are wearing.

Unidentified Tyne and Wear Family (1860s)

This CDV portrait shows shows four unidentified children, three boys and a girl. They look to be about 3-10/11 years of age, about 2 years between each child. The youngest child is the girl. She looks to be about 3 years old and wears a white dress open collar with puff sleeves, plaid leading ribbon, and waist band, and plain pantalettes. She wears socks and strap shoes. The youngesg boy looks to be about 5 years old wears a rather complicated dress. As it is so dark it is hard to make out detail, but there seems to be a ruffled collar along with a velvet jacket and vest (waistcoat). There appear to be decorative ribbons on the skirt of the dress. And like his sister he has pantalettes, but for some reason fancier ones. He has white long stockings and high-top shoes. The two older boys look to be abou 7-10 years of age, although the older boy could be 11 years old. Tbe boys are wearing idential cut-away jackets and vests. The suits are both probably done wth bloomer knickers, although we can only see the older boy's pants. Note the identical small white collars and ribbon ties. He has light-colored long stockings and high-top shoes. The portrait is undated, but the studio set and pointed corners of the CDV suggest the 1860s, probably the late-60s. The stuio was J. Elliott in Bishop Wearmouth, a part of Sundeland in northeast England.

Unidentified British Family (1860s)

We have no accompanying information for this family portrait. We have no idea who they are. We suspect that they were well-to-do because of how well dressed they are. The fact that they are being photographed in their back garden instead of a photogrphic studio also suggests affluence. We do not know when the portrait was taken. We guess in the 1860s, but we are by no means sure. All we know for sure is that it was British. It could well be Scottish because of the kilts the boys are wearing, but at the time we see English boys in fashionble families wearing kilts. Queen Victoria developd a love affair with Scotland. She and Prince Albert creared a new fashion when they began dressing the princes in kilts. So kilts by themselves at the time were not a valid indicator of Scotland. And at any rate, fashions in the Lowlands were basically English. We see mother and father with six children. Mother for sime reason is smileing, rare in these old portraits. There are four girls and two boys. They look to be about 3-15 years old. The boys and girls are all dressed very similarly. The boys wearing vested kilt suits and the girls wearing dresses. The major difference we see is the collars that the boys are wearing.


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Created: 12:26 AM 1/8/2008
Last updated: 9:25 AM 7/13/2023