James Gardiner Collection: Victorian album.

[between 1855 and 1899?]
Part of:
The James Gardiner Collection.
  • Pictures
  • Online

Collection contents

Online resources

  • Related materials at Wellcome Library Listen to an interview with James Gardiner: View resource

Selected images from this work

View 19 images

About this work

Also known as

Victorian crossdressing. Photograph album.


This album contains 35 cartes de visite photographs depicting private and theatrical female impersonation, 1850s-1890s. The majority of the black and white photographs have been hand-coloured, particularly over the dresses and accessories, in tones of pink, blue, green and purple. The album is contemporaneous with the photographs and were likely brought together in the 1890s.

Whilst female impersonation during the late 19th and 20th centuries was seen primarily as a form of entertainment by mainstream audiences, the images can also be read to show hidden sexual and gender non-conforming identities. Some of the records contain a description provided by James Gardiner which may include his own interpretation or further contextual information on the image and its subjects.


[between 1855 and 1899?]

Physical description

1 album : photographic prints, albumen prints ; album sheets 19.5 x 24.8 cm


Wellcome Collection 2045348i


Where to find it

  • Victorian album

    Closed stores

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