As We Were: Men With Hats


Ready for adventure in the 1850’s. Don’t forget to wear the correct hat for the occasion. Half Plate Daguerreotype

One fashion trend I miss are men with hats. I don’t mean baseball caps, worn front, back, or sideways. I am also not talking about stocking hats, or cowboy hats, which also serve their own purpose, or hide bed head, or whatever.

I’m talking about real hats. Why hats? Hats are fun. Hats are stylish. Hats protect male heads with thinning hair. Hats keep one both cold and warm. Plus hats just look great.

Do you really want to spend every holiday with these people?

An attractive family with fabulous hats. Tintype. 1890’s

I’m also talking about old photos and the 19th Century men in these photos. They knew how to wear hats. When they were not wearing the hats they were still showing them off. Mind you, top hats are extremely cool. Our friend Randolpho often wears an extremely tall top hat, but this post is about the other hats. Top hats will be featured in a future post.


Hats for fashionable men. Weinstock Lubin & Co. Sacramento California, 1903.

This week I’m featuring a small collection of images with stylish men in the 1860’s – 1880’s and their hats. Enjoy.


Of course you could always let your girlfriend wear your hat. Tintype. 1880’s.



1880’s Summer Style. A nice straw hat for a stroll out with your female companion. Back then straw hats were not just for yard work or super casual wear. This was real style. Tintype.



A couple of dapper dudes. Tintype. 1890’s


Straw and Silk


Well dressed couple. His hat is a light color but it looks to be cloth rather than summer straw. No doubt it was from one of the finest hat makers. Considering it is usually in the 90’s or 100’s in Marysville in July their clothing is, well interesting. Sanders & Stinson Photographers, July 9th 1864 Marysville, California. CDV



Dapper young man with a fine looking summer hat and cane. Notice the striped trousers and patterned vest peaking out from the jacket. 1860’s. Photographed by Issacs. Lachman. Philadelphia. CDV


I want a guy with a straw hat and a long jacket. Yes, that was a take on the Cake song. You’re welcome. 1860’s. Photographed by Black & Batchelder, Boston. CDV


Uncle Ed has a fine cloth hat. It isn’t quite a top hat but extremely handsome. Photographer Randall, Fishers Block Detroit Michigan, 1870’s. CDV


J.C. Huten in a bowler hat and friend. 1880’s. W. Hall, Photographer, Brighton, England. CDV


Cute dogs never go out of style. This dog is seriously cute.


Young man with a beautiful hat to go with his long jacket. He is looking grown up with a bit of a beard over his handsome young baby face. 1864. Carte De Vista by Charles G. Crane, Philadelphia. Tax Stamped.



I couldn’t leave you today without a formal top hat. This looks like it might be fur. This is The Irish Tenor Chauncey Olcott with Rosemary Theby. Cabinet Card, Donovan, New York.

This post has been part of the series As We Were, a look into 19th Century photography, fashion, and culture.

On the 1st and 4th Wednesday of each month I’ll ramble share my photos, along with stories, thoughts on fashion like how bustles and hoop skirts really work, society, and other related subjects. For the complete list CLICK HERE. 

All images are from the collection of and property of  Juliette Kings / Marla Todd. Please ask for permission before reproducing. Thank you.

One more thing…

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For Vampire Maman fans who came here for Vampires here is a picture of Peter Cushing in a hat.


~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman




The Very Sight of You

This morning I spoke with my son Garrett (age 20, in college, six-hour dive from here.) I’m always so proud at how confident he is. In fact I’m proud of all of his friends, and my nephew Logan, for being so confident, especially when it comes to interacting with women. Straight or Gay they all are so grounded.

Maybe it is the rain, and warnings about high water, but it made me think of a less fortunate man I once knew, when I was about Garrett’s age.

His name was Bernard. He was a family friend, and like us, he was a Vampire.

When he was a young man of astounding business success. At the age of twenty-five he was already wealthy. Despite the fact that he was a personable, and somewhat attractive man, Bernard was alone. This is because when he would have interactions with young women, or even older women, he would start to tremble. Many women found this trembling endearing, like they found trembling in small lap dogs endearing. To Bernard this was mortifying, so he stayed away from what he considered the fairer sex.

Eventually he went to a successful college friend, who was a bit more worldly than Bernard and asked for advice. What Bernard didn’t know what that his friend, whom we shall call William, was a Vampire.

William knew exactly how to cure Bernard. He turned Bernard into a Vampire.

Bernard would still tremble at the sight of a woman, but he learned if he put the woman into a trance, then drank about a half pint of her blood that he would stop shaking. Then he found that if he snapped her out of the trance, then made love to her, that he wouldn’t tremble for at least three days. All the women would remember was the most amazing experience they’d ever had with a man. Married or single, they all wanted to be with dear, sweet, trembling Bernard.

Soon Bernard grew tired of the friends-with-benefits and he found himself a wife. Estella was a lovely girl from a good family. She was quiet with very little personality, but Bernard loved her with all of his heart. She never knew he was a Vampire, and he never planned on telling her.

On the morning of their wedding day he went to visit all of his former female friends of good standing so that he would not tremble when he saw his bride. It was enough activity to keep him calm for a week. That night he was married and off to a glorious wedding night and honeymoon with his darling Estella.

Every other day he would take some blood from Estella and make love to her. She was happy and passionate in response, but soon her health began to fail. After a few years of constant blood taking Bernard realized that he was killing the woman he loved.

He purchased an elaborate crypt in the local cemetery for finer folks, then stopped his heart and turned cold (all Vampires can do this.) Estella thought he was dead. The doctors thought he was dead. Hundreds showed up at the funeral. Estella eventually regained her health, remarried another fine man, and had four lovely children and led a long and happy life.

Bernard escaped from the crypt (he had a key) and headed out West to seek his fortune.

Upon arriving in California he introduced himself to the Vampire community in Sacramento. It was February 1879. I’d turn twenty that October.

Bernard was successful in his new home, but he would still tremble when he was in the company of a woman. Swearing that he would never marry again, he quickly knew he’d have to find a network of women he could take blood from, and then seduce in order to keep himself calm.

My brother Aaron became good friends with Bernard. Whenever Bernard would be invited to visit Aaron and his wife Verity, he would ALWAYS make sure he would go to one of the local ladies of the night first so he wouldn’t kill himself in the presence of Verity. You see, Verity, who is like all of us, a Vampire, looks almost exactly like Botticelli’s Venus, in the Birth of Venus painting. The first time Bernard ever saw her he almost passed out from trembling. It was so bad that the floor shook and a vase of flowers fell over onto the table and spilled out on the floor.

One night before a party Bernard arrived early. He came upstairs looking for Aaron. Verity and I were upstairs getting ready, and not expecting anyone.

When Bernard entered the room he found me standing in just a petticoat and corset. His mouth opened and he started to shake. Then Verity stepped out from behind a screen completely naked, like Venus in the painting. Bernard trembled so violently that I thought he’d pass out, but then…THEN he trembled so hard that something amazing and quite disturbing happened as he turned gray starting at the top of his head and slowly went all the way down to his toes. He turned to dust and fell into a gray pile of powder on the floor. Verity grabbed her robe and got Aaron. The three of us stood and stared at the pile of what was once Bernard for at least five minutes. Then Aaron got the dust pan and swept poor Bernard into a Chinese vase and that was the last I ever saw of Bernard.

I called Aaron this morning and asked him what became of Bernard. My brother said he put the vase on the mantel in his office, but it would start to shake whenever Verity would walk into the room. After a few months it became too distracting so he took the vase to the river and shook the contents out into the current. When he told me the exact location I wasn’t surprised. The water constantly trembles at that spot, no matter what the level of the river is.

Now there are drugs, and other things like music, and therapy for those with social anxiety. For Bernard it was blood and sex, but unfortunately that isn’t always available when one accidentally runs into an extreme situation. Yes, poor Bernard, we knew him well.

By the way, this is a true story.

Have a good night everyone, and stay safe out in the winter weather.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman



March Madness, Laundry and Vampires

It is happening again…March Madness! Reblogged from March 2013 but well worth taking another look (and he is still sexy as ever!)

Vampire Maman

My husband is watching basketball. March Madness. I’m thinking more like March Insanity because I find no amusement in basketball. I’m not much of a football fan either.

The guy is a Vampire so you’d think…

Yes, you would think he wouldn’t be watching basketball as he folds laundry. OK maybe basketball isn’t such a bad thing. Let me say that again…my husband is watching basketball and folding laundry.

And yes, even Vampires have laundry. You’d think we put people in trances and have them do our laundry for us. Hmmm, now THERE is an IDEA. I put you in a trance and you’ll do my laundry and clean my house. 

But do I want someone in my house and how much trouble would it be to put someone in a trance for the sole reason of cleaning my house and/or doing my laundry?

It would be a lot…

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Night of the Living Dead – Ex-boyfriend Version

The fact that he always brought his brothers and their tiny chairs along on dates should have clued me in on just how weird he was.

The fact that he always brought his brothers and their tiny chairs along on dates should have clued me in on just how weird he was.

“It should have clued me off when he started telling me about what a weird teenager he was. I’m not talking drama club and doing impressions of zoo animals. That sounds sort of cute. No, he told me that he didn’t take showers and intentionally looked like a homeless kid even though his parents were well off. I thought it was weird and sort of sad but now I know I should have run. I spent way too much time with this guy but thank God I didn’t marry him.”  Lisa age 45 and happily married to a non-weird guy.

Listen to the clues…

That is hard when we don’t know we’re in the middle of a bad romance novel in the making…or worse a Zombie movie.

I was thinking about all of this because Clara (age 14) and Garrett (age 17) are always talking about relationships and romance. They’re teens. You’d think most adults would be smart about these things but sometimes I think my teens are smarter. I attribute that to the many many many hours my husband (their father) and I have talked with these kids about romance and relationships and sex and all sorts of things that can be both uncomfortable and funny.

And speaking of funny… What do you do when your 14 year old comes across a photo of an ex-boyfriend wearing your black teddy? Yes, black lace with an under wire bra. Well, you explain that there was a contest and he won and it never happened again. And yes, I could do a lot of mean things with that photo but I won’t. The guy was a turd but I’m not going to be one too. Also, I thought I’d thrown all of those photos out. Note: Make sure you throw out those photos that need to be thrown out.

This could also be a lesson in: If you don’t want anyone to see the photos don’t get yourself in a situation where there WILL be photos. Especially if it is on a stage in front of 200 people. And only wear your own underwear. Of course if you’re doing the Rocky Horror Picture Show that is a different matter, but this wasn’t the Rocky Horror Picture Show.

A friend of mine broke up with a guy because he always brought his crazy sister who talked non-stop on 90% of their dates. She started to wonder if the only reason she was around was because her boyfriend couldn’t have sex with his sister who did all of the other “girlfriend” functions. Needless to say, after one last weird “date” with the weird sister yammering on while said boyfriend sat there silently with a strange contented smile on his face as he watched his sister my friend decided to NEVER call him back or answer his phone calls again.  Weird family relationships are well, um, weird. And no guy is worth that. Get a dog. Dogs are fun. Don’t don’t bring weird friends or families on outings with you.

Do you really want to spend every holiday with these people?

Do you really want to spend every holiday with these people?

So I guess this goes to show the wealth of experience we can share or sort of share with our kids. PLEASE don’t share too much with your teens or they’ll think you’re crazy. This especially true for Vampire who have, well um, been around for a while.

Yes, I’d like to say all Vampire guys are sexy hunks (well that part is true) but some do leave much to be desired in the personality department and manners department and especially the tact department. They’re almost all alphas but then again they are all in the position to let themselves be used. And don’t even get me started on Werewolf guys. They’re dogs for the most part.

Hot and Sexy Vincent!

Hot and Sexy Vincent!

Yes, as I sit and talk with my friends under the light of the moon on my back deck with a nice bottle of wine we’re all so pleased to find we’ve managed to find wonderful men. That said, we’re still going to keep a lot of stories from our kids, even about their dads. Even when those kids are grown.

If he wants to tattoo your image on his'll have to check out his entire body first.

If he wants to tattoo your image on his arm…you’ll have to check out his entire body first.

So I’m looking over at my husband and brother Andy (visiting for a few weeks) and my son Garrett. They’re all so sweet and cute and everything a Vampire gal could want. Even Andy with his sensitive soul and my over romantic son have hope, for they are wise enough to talk with their female family members about dealing with girls.


So then Clara asks me if she has met any of my ex-boyfriends and she has, but I’m just not going to tell her about most of them. OK maybe I’ll tell her about the nice ones.


So have fun everyone, I have a party to go to…with my husband. xoxoxo

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

A guy who can keep you safe even when you're naked. But in the meantime don't be naked.

A guy who can keep you safe even when you’re naked. But in the meantime don’t be naked.