Young Man in Athletic Outfit

Young Man in Athletic Outfit


attributed to Oliver H. Willard

(American, 1828–1875)

Salted paper print from wet collodion negative

Image: 21.5 x 16.5 cm (8 7/16 x 6 1/2 in.); Paper: 22.4 x 17 cm (8 13/16 x 6 11/16 in.); Matted: 50.8 x 40.6 cm (20 x 16 in.)

Gift of Charles Isaacs and Carol Nigro 2003.304



During this era, people played recreational sports in attire resembling street clothes; this man’s outfit suggests that he was an acrobat or circus performer. It was common in the 19th century to photograph workers with the tools of their trade or in apparel unique to their profession. Photography collectors later labeled that type of photograph as an “occupational.”

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