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Our holdings include hundreds of glass and film negatives/transparencies that we've scanned ourselves; in addition, many other photos on this site were extracted from reference images (high-resolution tiffs) in the Library of Congress research archive. (To query the database click here.) They are adjusted, restored and reworked by your webmaster in accordance with his aesthetic sensibilities before being downsized and turned into the jpegs you see here. All of these images (including "derivative works") are protected by copyright laws of the United States and other jurisdictions and may not be sold, reproduced or otherwise used for commercial purposes without permission.

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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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The Barefoot Baroness: 1909

The Barefoot Baroness: 1909

New York circa 1909. "Lady Richardson." The British dancer and writer Constance Stewart-Richardson (1883–1932), author of "Dancing, Beauty and Games." 8x10 glass negative, George Grantham Bain Collection. View full size.

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Not A Baroness

Lady Constance was not a Baroness. Her husband, Sir Edward Austin Stewart-Richardson was the 15th Baronet of Pencaitland. A Baronet is sort of an hereditary knighthood; the recipient is not a member of the peerage and does not sit in the House of Lords. The Baronet of Pencaitland is in fact part of a very strange institution, the Baronetage of Nova Scotia, created by James I (VI of Scotland under whose autority this was created) in 1625 to settle what is now the province of Nova Scotia. Each of the 100 men who became Baronets under this scheme had to supply 6 settlers for Nova Scotia.

Lady Constance's husband, Sir Edward Stewart-Richardson was born in 1872. He died of his wounds while serving as a Captain in the Black Watch in November 1914 at age 42. His wife outlived him by 18 years.


In 1909, life expectancy, for a white woman in the U.S., was on average, about 47 years. Lady Richardson died at age 49, slightly above the median.

Perfect loveliness

She is perhaps the most beautiful woman I've seen on Shorpy. Amazing. And so sad that she died so young.

SHORPY HISTORICAL PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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