Mystery Photo: The Ritcheys

This cabinet card photo of the “Ritcheys” is listed for sale on eBay. Who were the Ritcheys? Well, that’s our primary mystery. The photo was presumably shot in Duluth, being marked with the logo of the Robinson Studio … although the “and New York” below the address is a little confusing. Anyway, it’s supremely likely the Ritcheys either lived in or near Duluth, or visited Duluth about 125 years ago, and that’s about all there is to go on.

The Minnesota Historical Society’s Directory of Photographers lists J. B. Robinson’s studio at 209 W. Superior St. as circa 1897.

The name “Ritcheys” is written on the back of the card.


Chester Knob

about 11 months ago

He spent a lot of time making "harumph" sounds. Why is she scowling? What is she holding behind her back? A knife?


about 11 months ago

Could be Jonah and Elibeth Ritchey, who lived in Duluth in 1895 at 509 Third Ave. E. in 1895. They were in their late 40s at the time, which seems right for their appearance.

Chester Knob

about 11 months ago

Late 40s? Harrumph! Jon and Lis are no older than 23 in this photograph.

Matthew James

about 11 months ago

Bob Dylan's father was born in 1911 and Bob Dylan himself in 1941 when his family lived at 519 N. Third Ave. E. If that is Jonah and Elibeth, depending on how long they lived and when Abram Zimmerman bought the house next door, then that might be a photo of the Zimmerman's neighbors. But they would have been in their late 80s at that time so it is perhaps more likely a photo of the people that formerly lived in the house of Bob Dylan's childhood neighbors.

Paul Lundgren

about 11 months ago

Is this Perfect Duluth Day's first episode of Six Degrees of Zimmerman?

Dan Pieniak

about 8 months ago

I have a similar photo by the same photo studio. Not sure of the year.

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