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Unknown young man - photographed at Grand Central Gallery, Omaha Grand Central Gallery - Omaha
Please note: The above photo has been edited by P. Davidson-Peters to clean up and enhance the image. However, in doing so, some identifying marks (edging, color etc.) which are helpful in dating old photographs have been removed. Therefore, we suggest you click the photo to view Sandy (Fox) Whitney's unedited, original scan to assist in dating photograph.
In 2012 this album came into the loving care of Sandy (Fox) Whitney, great great granddaughter of Sarah (Stratton), wife of Abraham Richard Fox who lived near Reelsville, Putnam Co., Indiana. It is believed that all the photos in the album are related to the Daily, Fox, Stratton and Girton families although many, such as this young man, are not identified.

This young man appears to be in his late twenties and was photographed at the Grand Central Gallery in Omaha. Given its close proximity to Council Bluff, Iowa which is less than ten miles away, and Missouri Valley, Iowa, less than thirty-five, it's possible this unidentified man may be a descendant of or relation to the Fox family.

His sack suit with its small lapel, bow-tie and slimmer trousers suggest his image was photographed in the mid to late 1880s. During this era, men who spent their days in offices felt compelled to prove that “mental” work had not made them “sissies” and the formal wear began to be replaced by the distinctively American, casual-looking sack suit which was considered much more masculine than the pleated “skirt” of the frock coat. This new look of softer shirts, lower collars under the unadorned jackets, which were worn with similarly narrow pants, a vest, bow tie and bowler hat, became the standard dress for the middle-class, white-collar men who might have worked in a bank, governmental office or post office, as well as farmers and ranchers who donned the suit to conduct their business in town. Notwithstanding the older men of rural areas who still wore beard, the clean-shaven face (with or without mustache) became the new fashion as men were seeking a more “go-getter” appearance.

Sandy is attempting to identify all persons in the album and learn more about each of them through additional research. If you can help identify or add further information to this photo, please contact us.
A note about Grand Central Gallery in Omaha: Edric L. Easton, Photographer and photographic stock dealer was born 31 May 1838 in Franklin Co., VT and was a direct descendant of John Eaton, who arrived on the Mayflower. In about 1835 or 1836 and as early as age fifteen took up the daguerreian profession where he pursued that occupation in his native state for five years, then moving to Omaha, Nebraska in 1856 where he established a daguerreian gallery in Omaha's Pioneer Block. He operated this intermittently and spent much of 1858 and 1859 photographing Mormon emigrants. He also owned a gallery across the river in Council Bluffs, Iowa. During the war he was a regimental photographer for the First Nebraska Infantry, and in 1866 returned to Omaha and established two galleries, one at the corner of Fifteenth and Douglas and the other at 234 Farnum, between Thirteenth and Fourteenth Streets. Around 1869 he sold the studio at Fifteenth and Douglas, including his carte de visite and stereograph negatives to William Henry Jackson and in the early 1870s photographed many scenic and panoramic views of Omaha from nearly every conceivable point. He opened a new gallery and from 1879 to 1892, his main gallery was located at 1320 Farnam, but he also maintained branch studios at 212 North 16th Street (1879) and 613 South Thirteenth Street (1880) from 1879 until 1880 when George Heyn purchased perhaps one branch of the galleries.

George Heyn, who was born in Germany in 1856, came to America when he was about fifteen years of age and learned photography while in the East. After some years employed in this profession, he removed to Nebraska in early 1879 and located in Omaha where he operated a photo gallery for Edric Eaton until late 1880 when he purchased of Eaton.

Sources: Pioneer Photographers From The Mississippi To The Continental Divide: A Biographical Dictionary, 1840-1865 by Peter E. Palmquist and Thomas R. Kailbourn, Stanford University Press, 2005; Everyday Life: Fashion." American Eras. Vol. 8: Development of the Industrial United States, 1878-1899. Detroit: Gale, 1997; Wisconsin

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Stratton & Fox Photo Album Introduction and Index
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The 1878 Sack Suit @ Wisconsin History (Outside Link)
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Updated 25 Jun 2014
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