Mystery Photos Posts

Mystery Photo #116: Fourth of July Parade in West Duluth

The written caption tells us pretty much everything we need to know, except for one critical thing: What year was this?

Mystery Photos #112-115: Wide Awake Studios

The same pair of gentlemen appear in the photos above from the Wide Awake Studio in Duluth. In addition to the mystery of who the subjects of these photos might be is the question of why the particular studio they are standing in was open seven days a week until midnight. Why would people at the turn of the 20th Century want to, for example, get their photos taken at 11 p.m. on a Sunday? Was that normal?

Mystery Photos #105-111: Ely Studio

It’s a nearly impossible challenge to put names on people in century-old cabinet card photos, but we occasionally try nonetheless. At least in most cases we know the photographer’s name, which can lead in all sorts of directions.

Mystery Photo #104: October House

These two buildings still exist in Duluth, in slightly altered form. They are significant for different reasons. One of them is one of the oldest standing buildings in Duluth.

What are they currently used for? What was the October House? Hint: A baker named Bergetta Moe was involved at one point.

Mystery Photo #104: Mustached Dude with Fat Tie

Who is this handsome Duluthian? Was he actually a Duluthian at all or just passing through and feeling photogenic?

Mystery Photo #103: Girl with Curls

What’s the deal with this curly haired lass? Was she a Duluthian?

Mystery Photo #102: Three Dudes in Fake Car

A recurring source of confusion in the Mystery Photo series is whether particular images that share the stamp of the Post Card Shop in Minneapolis and the Penny Arcade in Duluth were shot in Minneapolis or Duluth. Here is another such image.

Mystery Photo #101: Forest Service Office at Grand Marais

This photo seems to be of a forest service office on the southern part of Cook County Road 12, aka the Gunflint Trail, in or near Grand Marais. Or does it show a private residence and the arrow on the forest service sign indicates the office is up the road? Who is the gal posing the photo? What year is was this picture taken? Mysteries abound.

Mystery Photo #100: Early Settler

This photo is labeled “Early Settler Duluth MN.” And that’s all we know. Who is this dude?

Mystery Photo #99: Duluthian in uniform

Who is this guy and what’s his deal? His hat bears the number 581. The photo is from Christensen Photography of Duluth, Minn.

Mystery Photos #97 and #98: Howorth Photography

These two cabinet cards presumably feature two different women, although they look a touch similar. The mystery isn’t just who they are, but also what the deal was with Howorth.

Mystery Photo #96: Unknown Building

This image landed in Perfect Duluth Day’s files under “unknown building.” Anyone recognize it?

Mystery Photo #95: Mr. Earl Askew

A recurring source of confusion in the Mystery Photo series is whether particular images that share the stamp of the Post Card Shop in Minneapolis and the Penny Arcade in Duluth were shot in Minneapolis or Duluth. Here is another such image.

Mystery Photo #94: Postcard of Bizarro Duluth

So … what we’ve got here is … um … an image that seems completely unrelated to Duluth, labeled upside down as Duluth. Can anyone speculate on what the folks at V.O. Hammon Publishing Company were thinking? What is this image actually depicting?

While it’s not technically a photo, it needs to be categorized as a PDD Mystery Photo nonetheless.

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?