Mystery Photo #93: A Hard Day

With some Mystery Photos, we know a lot going in. With this one, we know very little. Who is this little girl and why was this photo shot on such a hard day?

What we do know is this photo was shot as a postcard image at either the Penny Arcade in Duluth or the Post Card Shop in Minneapolis. The card doesn’t have a postmark on it, so it’s hard to know more.

The message at the bottom appears to read:

Dear Mama,
This is a hard day. Smile
good — it won’t come off.


Paul Lundgren

about 5 months ago

A potential lead on determining if the location is Duluth or Minneapolis: 

Comparing the mystery photo in this post with a mystery photo from a previous post shows there were two different wishing wells. It's possible either location had two wishing wells, but it's more likely one of the wishing wells was in Duluth and one was in Minneapolis.

Thanks to Gina Temple-Rhodes for the tip on that.

Gina Temple-Rhodes

about 5 months ago

There is also this well photo, but it, like the others, lists both Duluth and MSP on the back.

Gina Temple-Rhodes

about 5 months ago

And this lovely lady was visiting the OTHER well, somewhere. But no one seems to have mailed the darn cards!

Paul Lundgren

about 5 months ago

Gina also found that the photographer at the Penny Arcade in Duluth was Thomas Furniss, who later moved into the realm of moving pictures and was manager of Duluth's Rex Theatre, later the Garrick, which was probably the first theater in town to show the new "photo plays" in about 1914. 

He also got into trouble for anti-union practices and the Labor World publication was mad at him in 1916. He died in 1924, so probably didn't see the rise of "talkies."

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