The Lyon, Shorb & Company online collection contains 72 cartes de viste mass-produced portraits on cardboard backingsof company iron workers posed in stances from 1860 through 1867. The images show male workers dressed in both work and formal attire; these types of photographs were seldom taken during the period.
What’s in the entire collection
The collection, held by the Library & Archives at the Senator John Heinz History Center, is comprised of 282 cartes de viste, a majority of which were shot at the Cargo Photographic Rooms of Pittsburgh between 1860 and 1867. At least three were taken at other photographic studios outside of Pittsburgh, which show agents from New York and Saint Louis. All but seven of the images are identified.
About Lyon, Shorb & Company
Robert T. Stewart and John Lyon founded Lyon, Shorb & Company in 1825. Located on the south side of the Monongahela River across from downtown Pittsburgh, this iron works grew from a crew of thirty to well over 250 by the 1860s. Initially, the iron was brought in from a more extensive plant Stewart and Lyon owned on the Juniata River near Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, and rolled. Later, the works had its own puddling furnaces.