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A Small Accolade, and Some Brooklyn Moustaches

Apr 24, 2009 10:28 AM | 3 comments

Good news! Amid the gloom of budget cuts, bursting property bubbles and bankruptcies, we take heart from the fact that Brooklynology won an honorable mention in Mr M. Levy, Unity Clubthe ArchivesNext Best Archives on the Web awards. That alone is a fine thing, but better yet, among the other winners is the University of Kentucky's "Mustaches of the Nineteenth Century" in the "Most Whimsical Archives-Related Website" Category--one of the most amusing blogs we have seen in a long time.

Never having met a good idea that wasn't worth borrowing, I thought we might occasionally bring to your attention a few of the finer Brooklyn moustaches of the nineteenth century.  Were Brooklyn moustaches different from all other moustaches? Not at all, and yet it is worth pointing out that Mr N. Schellenberg, Unity Clubthey did adorn masculine faces all over the City (and, after 1898, the Borough)-- a fashion, like hats, that is less often seen today. Today we feature two belonging to members of Brooklyn's Unity Club, described by the Brooklyn Daily Eagle as "the leading Hebrew social organization of the Borough..." Our impeccably preserved collection of cabinet cards depicting club members bears the name of each one on the verso, sometimes with a date.  Of a type rarely seen today, these facial ornaments cover the upper lip and would certainly require the use of a moustache cup, a subject touched upon in our inspirational blog of the day.

One young staff member who shall be nameless disrespectfully referred to this style as a "krill filter." Really!


4/28/2009 3:22:48 PM #

What about beards? Sideburns? Got anything on those?


4/28/2009 3:46:16 PM #

Hi Lisa: We could certainly consider a series on Beards of Brooklyn. Also if you check out the mustaches blog you will see some interesting posts on sideburns.  The bulk of our photograph collections, as you know, date from around 1910-1955, when facial hair was less de rigueur than in the late 19th century, but I'm sure we can come up with a few impressive facial adornments nonetheless.

Joy Holland

5/1/2009 11:10:13 PM #

How moustachivating! The 19th century certainly produced histories best moustaches, by a lick and a yawn.  I'm not sure why--perhaps there was more space between the nose and the upper lip then. Without that, why, (as they say down here), "they h'ain't no place for coffee twisters if you don't got a place to put it!" or something like that. Or not.  For some reason I noticed (for real) that portraits of criminals in those great big Books O'Criminals published in the late 19th c  didn't have that much facial hair.  Hm.  

John Ptak