Greek key

I don’t know whether to say this lady is plain or what. She has a nice face, smooth skin, normal features, except her upper lip seems to not be very prominent, suggesting she hasn’t got any teeth, but what a terrible assumption to make. So, I am going to postulate she has a terrible underbite instead.

If the photographers were not different, I’d suggest this is the same chair used in our previous photograph, but this photo was made by Townsend in Iowa City, IA. There is a blanket with a floral pattern and edged in Greek key and fringe flopped over the chair. It almost distracts from the lovely bustle dress. I picture this in bottle green wool with black velvet trimming. She has a necklace and earrings on, and if she was good with her needlework, she probably made her collar.


The 3/4 profile

This is a 3/4 profile bust of a woman, probably related to the two previous photograph subjects. This lady has a lovely dress with the buttons descending at an angle from shoulder to front. This was a popular style in the 1890s. The dress is striped and I see it in tan and navy. She is wearing a locket or small watch from her throat.

The photographer was T. W. Townsend of Iowa City. Townsend was born in 1845 in Ohio, and later moved to Iowa. He established his photography business in 1870 on Clinton, which is the same street as our two previous photographs. He was fairly well known, and in the 1881-1882 Holiday Souvenir and Annual for the town of Iowa City was featured as a “man of prominence” in the town. The fellows included in that group were photographed and a short biography written. The photograph of Townsend reveals him to be youthful looking but with a very long dark beard. I’d imagine that since the beard being a popular look for men at the time, it was not unusual, but to my eye, he looks a bit of a wild man.

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