New American Cabinet Cards: Mount Styles (1900-20)

tunic suit 1908

Figure 1.--This new style studio cabinet card was taken in 1908. The unidentified boy looks to be about 3 years old. He wears a decorated tunic suit with long stockings. Note his cebter hair part. Hev is posedstanding on a chair. The size was about 5.2 x 3.2 inches. A frame pattern has been pressed into the card. The studio looks to be somethinghb like Blazek. inches.

The question of mount styles for the new generation of cabinet cards is a very complicated one, principally because there were so many different styles. We have no idea why the mounts were so uniform before the turn of the century and so varied afterwards. One possibility was the appearance of snapshots and postcard-backed photographs. As a result of these new types, the standardized slot albums for CDVs and cabinet cards were no longer so popular, Families turned to scrapbooks where they could put in all the various formats. We will try here to list the various styles of new cabinet cartds we have noted in the new 20th century. Vertical orientations tend to dominate. Here we have one that looks rather the paper frames that would become popular. The mount is framed in color coordinated thick frame lines. This was a popular style. The studio is no longer indicated in bold lettering. In fact on some cards it is not indicated at all. Some cards were done without color frame lines , but framing was done by pressing a frame into the paper card. This was another popular style. We also see square cards. These tendd to be smaller than the vertical orientation cards and are often done with the pressed framed approach..

Varied Styles

The question of mount styles for the new generation of cabinet cards is a very complicated one, principally because there were so many different styles. We have no idea why the mounts were so uniform before the turn of the century and so varied afterwards. One possibility was the appearance of snapshots and postcard-backed pjotographs. As a result of these new types, the standardized slot albums for CDVs and cabinet cards were no longer so popular, Families turned to scrapbooks where they could put in all the various formats.

Specific Styles

We will try here to list the various styles of new cabinet cards we have noted in the new 20th century. Vertical orientations tend to dominate as was the case for the old style cards. The two basic styles we note so far are mono color mounts and mounts with colored framing lines. The mono-colored mouts have framing devices with impressed designs. They were mostly cream colors or greyish shades of green-olive. The cards with the colored framing lines were mostly cream colors with btown or greyish framing lines. Other colors were ued, but these seem the most common. On the previous page we have one that looks rather the paper frames that would become popular. The 1912 mount is framed in color coordinated thick frame lines. This was a popular style. The studio is no longer indicated in bold lettering. In fact on some cards it is not indicated at all. Some cards were done without color frame lines, but framing was done by pressing a frame into the paper card. Here is a good example a mono-colored mount with impressed/raised framing devices dated 1908 (figure 1). This was another popular style. There may have been more styles and we will add them here as we expand this section.

Chronology

The chronological trend can be easily followed as the photographic record is so extensive. We mostly notice these new style cabinet cards in the 1900s. They were not totally a style popular in the 1900s, but this was definitely the most common decade. We notive a few in the 189e0s. We see some cards beging to diverge somewhat in the mid-1890s. nd we begin to see some of these cards at the nd of the decade. A good example is a portrait of Richard Lancaster Witzleben in 1899. It is a cream card with inented frames and moddeled surface texture. We do not see many before this. But we see large numbers with the turn of the century. This is when we see most of these new-style cabinet card mounts. They appear in large numbers and in a variety of styles. We also see some in the 1910s, but far fewer. Cabinet cards become very rare after World War I in the 1920s.







HBC






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Created: 9:13 PM 10/12/2013
Last updated: 6:54 AM 9/6/2017