Curiously-Posed Half and Two Quarter Plate Ambrotypes of a Couple and Acting Troupe
Lot of 3 interestingly-posed ambrotypes, possibly of a group of actors for a comedy or drama and one with a smiling couple. Housed in a floral Union case, the first quarter plate ambrotype shows a couple lightheartedly posing for a picture. Wryly smiling as if he is telling a joke, the man (believed to be the male actor in the next set of images) looks at the camera as he points to an encased portrait, making this image a "portrait within a portrait." Meanwhile, the woman smiles down at him with her hand-tinted gold wedding ring and broach.
In a more serious tone, the second quarter plate ambrotype depicts a confused looking man with a large broadside that reads, Doubt! Eh? I'll Bet a Fortune. Inside the case is a card from E.B. Hambleton's Ambrotype Gallery in Buffalo, NY. On the back, a penciled inscription says, ...only imagine a positive and confidant instead of a perplexed expression. -Emory.
Posing as if he is deep in contemplation, the same man in a half plate ambrotype holds another broadside that reads, Sold!! By George! Goosey Forfeits. Two women fervently gesture towards him in either disgust or frustration. Vol 2nd, Showing effect of the "publisher copy" on the victim, explains the second card's notation, Mrs. Miller says the victimized can have his ordered vest when he pays for it---. The image is by daguerreotypist, J.H. Tompkins of Buffalo, NY. Based on the subjects and the notations, we assume the images are of a troupe of actors, performing scenes of an unknown play in Buffalo between 1875 and 1876.
The first image of the single actor is dark and clear. The second image with the group of actors has some flaking of the lacquer. Third image with some flaking of lacquer and a small smear; lacking original seals.