Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Saint Louis Art Company


Photographer
Saint Louis Art Company

photographer St Louis Art Co.
(found in Lubbock, TX)


photographer St Louis Art Co.
(found in Lubbock, TX)

It is apparent that there were two businesses titled “St Louis Art Co” in existence at about the same period in the late 19th century.

One was IN Saint Louis, MO, mostly at 715 Olive. The heart of the business was art, etchings, paintings and sculpture. They also sold picture frames and art supplies. There is little evidence that they dealt in photography.

The other Saint Louis Art Co was a railroad car sometimes called the Palace Railroad Art Studio, which circulated in the central US. So far records have been found placing the car in Tennessee, Texas and Kansas. One newspaper item mentions that there were at least four photographers involved, another says there were five.

The railroad car studio advertised heavily in some towns which helps outline some of their locations and time periods. Piecing together the dates of the ads and some information contained in the items, a partial itinerary of the St Louis Art Co railroad car, can be assembled. But there are still many gaps.


1889 Sep 12
Hiawatha, KS, Kansas Democrat small ad for Hutchings Railroad Art Car
1891 Oct 01, 08
Nickerson (KS) Argosy small ad for photo car
1891 Oct 16, 23, 30; Nov 06, 13
Marion (KS) Record small ads
1891 Nov 12, 19, 21, 23, 26
Peabody (KS) Gazette-Herald small ads
1892-1893
Nothing found for these years as yet
1893 May 23
St Louis (MO) Post-Dispatch news item from Sherman, Texas, says photographer William Whiting age 28, working as retoucher for the St Louis Art Co has committed suicide. It might be assumed that the Palace Railroad Car was in or near Sherman, TX, at that time. (The paper assumes that it is the St Louis Art Co based locally at 715 Olive. No other connection between the two businesses has been found. )
1894 Mar 09 thru Jul 10
Austin (TX) American Statesman small ads for St Louis Art Co and/or Palace Railroad Art Studio

1895 Jun 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 16
Pine Bluff (AR) Daily Graphic six small ads for the Palace Railroad Art Studio
1895 Oct 29, 31; Nov 01, 02, 03, 05, 06, 07
Vicksburg, MS, Daily Commercial Herald nine small ads for the Palace Railroad Art Studio
1897 Dec 03
Weekly Columbia (TN) Herald three small ads
1898 Mar 31; Apr 01, 02, 04, 07, 08, 11, 12, 13,
The (Moline, IL) Dispatch small ads for Railroad Art Studio
1899 - 1905
Nothing found for these years as yet
1906 Mar 01, 08, 15: Apr 05, 12, 19, 26; May 03, 10, 17;
The New Era (Formoso, KS) small ads for railroad studio
1906 Apr 12, May 17, 22, 24, 31; Jun 07, 14, 21, 26, 28; Jul 05, 12, 26; Aug 02, 06; Oct 04, 11, 18, 23, 25; Nov 01, 05, 08, 15, 22, 29; Dec 06, 13, 27
Cawker City, KS Ledger small ads for St Louis Art Co in Cawker City

Nickerson (KS) Argosy - 08 Oct 1891


Nickerson (KS) Argosy - 08 Oct 1891

Marion (KS) - 16 Oct 1891


Peabody KS Gazette Herald - 19 Nov 1891


Update: 03 Aug 2018
Four more examples of cabinet cards from
St Louis Art Co
were found in Ada, OK


Photographer
Saint Louis Art Company
(found in Ada, OK)



Photographer
Saint Louis Art Company
(found in Ada, OK)

Photographer
Saint Louis Art Company
(found in Ada, OK)

Photographer
Saint Louis Art Company
(found in Ada, OK)


A new example was sent by G Groth
St Louis Art Co
It has an added clue or perhaps an added mystery: "Villa" is included in the imprint.
Family history of Tom Brown, the ancestor in the portrait, indicates that the photograph was probably taken before about 1910.

Below is the only mention of "Villa" in any records found so far about the St Louis Art Co. The name may have been used early on and then dropped.

Nickerson (KS) Argosy - 08 Oct 1891


photographer:
St. Louis Art Co. "Villa"
contributed by G Groth

It appears that "St Louis Art Company" may not have been in or even near St Louis, MO, any more than the "Paris Art Studio" of Cassville, MO, was in France.

1893 May 23
St Louis (MO) Post-Dispatch news item from Sherman, Texas, says photographer William Whiting age 28, working as retoucher for the St Louis Art Co has committed suicide. It might be assumed that the Palace Railroad Car was in or near Sherman, TX, at that time. (The paper assumes that it is the St Louis Art Co based locally at 715 Olive. No other connection between the two businesses has been found. )

Peabody (KS) Gazette Herald - 19 Nov 1891

Saint Louis (MO) Post Dispatch -= 25 May 1893


Austin (TX) American Statesman - 10 Mar 1894

Austin (TX) American Statesman - 12 Mar 1894

Austin (TX) American Statesman - 22 Mar 1894

Austin (TX) American Statesman - 05 Apr 1894

Austin (TX) American Statesman - 18 Apr 1894

Austin (TX) American Statesman - 12 may 1894

Brenham (TX) Banner - 11 Jul 1894

Pine Bluff, AR, Daily Graphic - 13 Jun 1895

Vicksburg,MS, Daily Commercial Herald - 07 Nov 1895

Columbia Weekly Herald - 03 Dec 1897

Columbia Weekly Herald - 03 Dec 1897

Formosa, KS, The New Era - 08 Mar 1906


Formosa, KS, The New Era - 26 Apr 1906


Cawker City, KS Ledger - 27 Dec 1906


example from pinterest site, no credit found


example from auction site

example from auction site

Note the card on the left is from the St Louis PHOTO Company
It is not the same as the St Louis Art Co.



Above is an example of a reverse side imprint showing woodcut of a "Palace" railroad car. This was used by photographer Frank J Haynes. The St Louis Art Co probably used similar imprints.

Not the one you were looking for? Here's the photographer's INDEX by name. Listed here are all the Cabinet Card photographers of the 19th century found in LOST GALLERY. This is a work in progress. For a look at the original postings go to LOST GALLERY.

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