We all know that sitting for a photograph in the 19th century was a process that required patience. As we saw in yesterday’s photo of the little boys with body positioning devices behind them, sometimes it was very difficult to hold still for the required amount of time. Well here we have another method for keeping children still for the necessary length of time for a good exposure. This child is sitting on the lap of someone, probably their parent. You can see the cloth resting upon the nose and what I think were eyeglasses. It’s a bit disturbing, really.
Here’s another example, with a less thoughtful photographer who just draped the cloth over the person’s head! Even though the parent is holding the child, you can still see quite a lot of movement in the child’s hands. Below is the back of the CdV, showing the photographer was H. C. Call of Bangor, ME, and that this was Aunt Elosie or Elanie…presumably, this refers to the baby.
UPDATE: Thanks Iggy (Intense Guy) for clarifying the name is likely Elorie. The photographer HC Call was in business in the 1880s.