I picked up this tintype, housed in a paper frame, in Markle, Indiana. Writing on the back reads “Whitley Co. Ind.”
I find it difficult to date this tintype based on the young man’s fashion. If I had to make a guess, I would say late 1860s to mid 1870s, based on the felt hat and piped edge suit lapels. I welcome anyone with more knowledge about Victorian men’s fashion to provide input.
I found two men named David Aker living in Whitley County, Indiana. One, born in 1812, was a farmer in Whitley County. He would have been in his fifties when the photo was captured, making him too old to be the sitter. Another, born in 1874, would have been too young to be the sitter.
One thing to note is that the latter David Aker was also found in records as Frank David Aker. This raises a good question. Could David have been the sitter’s middle name, and/or a name that he didn’t use consistently, especially on paperwork, like census records? Frank David Aker’s father was George Aker, born about 1839. If my dating of this tintype is correct, George would have been in his early twenties when this photo was taken, and would fit the sitter’s age. However, I find no record of George’s middle name or of him using the name David.
This is another rescued photo that remains a mystery, for now.