A portrait of a black family, grouped together on a late 19th century full glass plate.
The image is a positive backed by paper and now archivally framed and preserved. Its rarity lies both in its size and in the use of the plate to make a single image, an expensive endeavor. Few people could have afforded to have this image made, (they could have had each person photographed separately and probably used less glass) I wonder if, perhaps, the photographer was a member of the group or if it was an expensive job he was asked to produce. By portraying them together he was able to give them a complex setting that would not have worked for individual portraits where one background image would have appeared, repeated, as boring and artificial.
The framing style and the period cultural subject matter suggest to me that this work was once part of the vast collection of Phillip Isacson of Maine.