Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #86 Tintype of an Unknown Man

This very distinguished looking man’s photograph has no identification on the front or back. As with all of the tintypes in the collection, the sleeve or album which may have originally held the picture did not survive.

The man wears his hair short. The damage to the tintype makes it difficult to tell if his hair is parted or combed back without a part. He has no side whiskers and wears a long handlebar mustache combed down sleekly with a slight upward curl at the end. He has a cleft chin and light colored eyes. Even more noticeable than his thin face with its high square forehead and low eyebrows are his large ears which stick out.

The flat bow tie is worn under the turned-down collar of his white shirt. His notch lapel vest has buttons covered in the same material as the suit. The chain of his pocket watch is attached at the third buttonhole. His coat or jacket (the length cannot be determined) matches the vest. It has long lapels and likely buttons only from the mid-section down.

Does the under-the-collar tie date this outfit to the 1870s or 1880s?

tintypeunknownmanrooneycollectionUnidentified Man, ca. 1870s or 1880s?
Photo type
: Tintype
Tintype size: 1/6 plate; 2 5/8″ x 3 1/4″
Border style: N/A
Sleeve: none
Front imprint: none
Back imprint: none
Photographer: none
Labeling: none
Damage: cracks and rust

Could this be the same man as in the photo below? Yes, the chin is hidden by the older man’s beard and his nose looks broader, but look at the ears! Do ears drop with age? In the picture above the top of the ears are at the same level as the eyebrows (high set ears) while below they are just below eye level (low set ears).

ca. 1910, Albert Spencer LILLIE 1848-1913

If the man in the tintype above isn’t Albert Spencer LILLIE (1848-1913), perhaps he was one of his brothers?


More about this collection, how it came to be in my possession,
and links to previous posts in the series can be found here.

Please contact me!
Are you related to a person mentioned in this post? Send an email to
openingdoorsinbrickwalls @ pt.lu or message me on my Facebook page
Opening Doors in Brick Walls.

© 2017, copyright Cathy Meder-Dempsey. All rights reserved.
















Author: Cathy Meder-Dempsey

When I’m not doing genealogy and blogging, I spend time riding my racing bike with my husband through the wonderful Luxembourg countryside.

13 thoughts on “Old Photographs Saved From Trash Can ~ #86 Tintype of an Unknown Man”

  1. If these aren’t the same men, then I think they were related. By chance, the angle of their heads is about the same in both photos. The ears look the same, both have fairly deep set eyes under distinctive eyebrows and the noses are similar, although with the tin type , it’s a bit harder to tell.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I tried with PicTriev and got 66%. I wanted to try with the TwinsOrNot site but was having problems uploading the photos.
      I don’t know the reason some corners of tintypes are missing and will look that up. I have a suspicion. I’ll include it in my next post. 🙂 Thank you, Jeanne.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Janice. Albert, the older man with the beard, was born in 1848. If the two are the same man, then he would have been too young in the 1860s to be the man at the top. He may remain unidentified. 😦


  2. I maybe see a family resemblance… But I’m never any good at this game (and I play it with a lot of my own unlabeled photographs). Just as soon as I *think* I see a resemblance, I see another feature that makes me question my judgment. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Konzen Genealogy

Tracing the Konzen Family Line

Laura J. Hanson

City writer with a country view

Look into my eye

Mijn ervaring met Acanthamoeba Keratitis, meer dan alleen een ernstige oogaandoening

Secrets et ancêtres

Généalogie familiale

Finding My Ancestors

a personal family tree blog

B&F: Jewish Genealogy and More

Navigating Jewish Genealogy

Through The Byzantine Gate

The Serrapede and Muro Families-From Agropoli to America

Blackthorn Genealogy

tales of ancestral adventure, genealogical pursuit, and greater belonging

Many Branches, One Tree

...Understanding our roots helps us grow

Roots Revealed

Viewing African American History Through a Genealogical Lens

Decluttering the Stuff

Our Journey in Decluttering the Stuff so we can Live a Decluttered Life

Genealogy Bites

Little bites of genealogy.

Past Presence

A site for genealogists and family historians

Finding Progenitors

Ask Questions........Share Stories

Caroline's Chronicles

My family & other oddities


incorporating DNA in genealogy research

This Is Us

The Browns & The Moores, A Few Gauffreaus & Gustins


As my life goes by, the past gets closer and the future further away.

%d bloggers like this: