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Photo Dating Just For Men's Fashions

Contents of this page:

Men's clothing by decades

1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1890, 1900, 1910, 1920 




Photo Dating Notes:


Early 40s, 

remnant of the 1830s, black velvet collar, 

large big bow tie 

double breasted jacket, one button undone 

cutaway jacket

turned down shirt collar

narrow sleeves

hair over the ears












Photo Dating Notes:


1825 -1840 cutaway jacket






black collar

double breasted buttons, on button undone,

narrow sleeves, 

appears to be a wrap around bow tie /cravat











Photo Dating Notes:


Stand up shirt collar touching cheek

large bow tie

wide lapel, narrow sleeves

hair over ears

waistcoat/vest with shawl collar


posture sitting,






Photo Dating Notes:


Stand up collar touching cheek

shawl collar on waistcoat/vest


wide lapel

hair over ears






























Photo Dating Notes:


stand up collar wide gap

cravat/wrap around bowtie

shawl waistcoat vest

large lapels

deep notch

hair over ears

no facial hair



















Photo Dating Notes:



Mid 40s,

wide lapels with "M" notch,

turned down collar with wide gap


narrow sleeves;

long hair








zoom of "M" notch on lapel


seen only in the early 40s














Photo Dating Notes:



"M" notched lapel

cravat bow

shawl silk collar

stand up collar with wide gap

facial hair, chops








P. Huas, Washington City, 1843

Photo Dating Notes:

wide "M' Lapel, stand up collar with wide gap









1844 Louis Daguerre, Photographer

Photo Dating Notes:

Mustache, cravat/bowtie, stand up collar with wide gap, waistcoat/vest with shawl collar









1844 James Brown

Photo Dating Notes:

black collar with wide lapels, matching plaid tie and waistcoat/vest with wide collar, hair combed forward, narrow sleeves.












Photo Dating Notes:



stand up collar with wide gap

silk shawl collar waistcoat/vest

hair over ears

curtain beard along the jaw line


Plain background,










Variations of tying a cravat/wrap around bow tie.































Zachary Taylor


Photo Dating Notes:

stand up collar


fitted double breasted uniform 


Plain background



1849 Edgar Allen Poe



Photo Dating Notes:

turned down collar with wide gap.

cravat, long hair combed forward, wide lapels, dark collar


narrow collar on the waistcoat/vest, top button done





Plain background













Photo Dating Notes:

coat and jacket oversized the look of the decade, 

banana sleeves

stand up collar

Trim around lapel

square toed boots


Stabilizing stand behind feet, curtain and table props, plain background










Prince Albert


Photo Dating Notes:

Prince Albert and Victoria

frock coat not matching pants

turn down collar

shawl collar waistcoat/vest

pants with stirrups

hair combed forward from the back

chops and mustache


Plain background, appears to be flat gray like an ambrotype




Photo Dating Notes:

1855 Very tall top hats, big bow ties, turned down collars, wide lapels, walking stick, waitcoat/vest with shawl collar, one guy is clean shaven and the other a small mustache. Oh, and pants and jacket appear to be matching.


Don't forget to look at the physical attributes of each image, this appears to be a daguerreotype.











1855 Wilkes Booth









Photo Dating Notes:

Trim around jacket collar and cuffs.

mustache, full sleeve, knee length jacket.

don't know the name of this hat, just know the varieties, not all wore top hats.

 the background is plain, just patterned floor, column and baluster.










George Opdyke


Photo Dating Notes:


silk very tall top hat

frock coat knee length with narrow lapels

black velvet collar

wide lapels

tweed pants to floor

mustache and chops,

short hair combed forward at temples


Stabling stand behind him and holding chair

curtain, pedestal and table props 

octagon design floor










wide lapels

tall top hats


curtain beards

large full sleeves

squared toe boots

watch fob chains








1858 Library of Congress Photo.

Photo Dating Notes:


large bow tie/cravat

black velvet jacket collar

short narrow jacket lapels

facial hair long chops only







Photo Dating Notes:

narrow lapels

turned down collar

narrow bow tie

double breasted jacket

full sleeves

chops facial hair













Photo Dating Notes:

Herman Melvin, author, Mobey Dick

narrow lapels

full fitting sleeves

turned down collar

bow tie

full facial hair







Photo Dating Notes:

President Grant

turned down collar

narrow bow tie

large lapels

watch fob chain

facial hair





Photo Dating Notes:  

Mutton chops, wide lapels, bow tie, high closure on the waistcoat/vest

embossed cartouche, tintype, business card size






Photograph is a Potter's Patent Tintype 1865.

Photo Dating Notes:

The Bow Tie,1865  was already in use by the invention of the photograph and still going strong in the late 1880s. The earlier version of the 1840 bow tie was larger and looser. 







Rutherford Hayes photo from 1870-1880

Photo Dating Notes:

Wide lapels

Waist coat /vest with shawl collar

full beard






Victor Hugo 1876

Photo Dating Notes:

Wide lapels, waist coat/vest 6 buttons to top, turn down collar

watch fob, wide baggy sleeves, full facial hair, short hair.




1877 Henry OFlipper USMA

Photo Dating Notes:

usually uniforms have elements of the current trending style, like the size and shape of the sleeves or in this case the turned down collar with the gap getting smaller than in the past like 1840s. We have samples in other decades, of cadets in later years demonstrating this. Likewise civilian clothes often had elements of military trends, such as double pockets after WWI.









1878 Andrew Carnegie

Photo Dating Notes:

Very tall top hat, dark collar with wide lapels, full facial hair, short hair, bow tie, stand up collar and gloves.





1879 Bat Masterson

Photo Dating Notes:

narrow lapels, turned down collar, waist coat/vest 6 buttons to top,

narrow sleeves, bowler hat has a short crown and curved brim

full mustache, hair above the ears







Photo Dating Notes:

high waistcoat

turned down collars

narrow lapels

short bowler

long frock

hip length jacket

watch fob chains

narrow bow ties

four in hand long tie tucked in waistcoat/vest

short hair

facial hair



A stand up collar with turned corners, 1 ˝” deep. Worn from 1880-present day for formal wear developed many versions.  The  2” high version was popular from 1890 to 1905. the extremely high collar and with more server points was favored by 1890 to 1905. Then a version called the butterfly wing of the 1920s and 30s, they were pretty much the same but the wings were pointy and bent outwards.  Another collar that was similar was the but with double rounded turndown corners collar worn, from 1870-1940.












Photo Dating Notes:

first button on jacket the style

hanky pocket first seen (new)

flat short hair









Photo Dating Notes:

U.S. President, Chester Arthur 1881-1885.

Notice the trim around the wide lapels of the 1880s. 








Photo Dating Notes:

observe many kinds of hats in one era.

2 derbies/low crown bowlers

5 wideawake hats large brim low crown

1 appears to be soft felt hat like the homburg

Original photograph of the 'Dodge City Peace Commission' in June 1883. Front, l-r; Chas. E. Bassett, Wyatt S. Earp, Frank McLain, and Neil Brown. Back, l-r; W. H. Harris, Luke Short, W. B. Bat Masterson, and W. F. Petillon. This is the version with Petillon beside Masterson.

Resource and credit, Ford County Historical Society Dodge City Kansas.






Photo Dating Notes:

stand up wing tip

four in hand large knot tie

wide lapels

short hair

facial hair



standup collar small gap.





four in hand large knot

stand up wing tip collar

narrow lapels 


James Craig, Member for Glengarry, Ontario Legislative Assembly

Photo Dating Notes:







In 1860, white was the choice color for most shirts and disposable collars and cuffs were worn and bow ties were popular for evening wear.  One shirt and many collars is easy on the laundering and the appearance of more clothes.  In the 1860's and 70's trousers were worn close to the leg and long enough to reach the heels of the shoes.  

The Sack Suit 1860-1890

The everyday common business suit. Appeared in the 1850s, usually four cloth covered buttons, one engaged at the top. It was more in style not to match color.  Any hat could be worn with this suit with exception of the top hat.

In the 1860 the became for fitted and in between morphed into the suit we know today.

At the end of World War I (1914-1919). Men returning from the war faced closets full of clothes from the teens, which they wore into the early 1920s. The sack suit, which had been popular since the mid eighteen-hundreds, constituted appropriate “day” dress for gentlemen. (Edwardian etiquette commanded successive changes of clothing for gentlemen during the day.) With the suits, colored shirts of putty, peach, blue-gray and cedar were worn. Shaped silk ties in small geometric patterns or diagonal stripes were secured with tie pins and a black bowler hat. The tail coat was considered appropriate formal evening wear, with a top hat. Starched white shirts with pleated yokes, bow ties and shirts with white wing collars were also seen. Tuxedos were increasing in popularity but were not yet completely acceptable.  Black patent-leather shoes were popular and often appeared with formal evening wear. Casual clothing demanded two-tone shoes in white and tan, or white and black. Fringed tongues on Oxfords and brogues were seen frequently. Lace-up style shoes were most in demand. 






Nelson A. Miles



uniform with standup collar


facial hair is a handlebar mustache

short hair, no sideburns


Research metals on military websites they are out there, I recognize a civil war metal on his chest. Every thing on him means something.








1897-1901 US President William Mckinley

Turned up collar

Wide lapels with contrasting fabric, small bow tie









John Le Piere

know date here, 1901

variation of a standup collar rounded tips


left off center part in flat hair











1904 left

W.E.B. Du Bois

wide lapel

stand up wing tip collar


facial hair


1918 below

narrow lapel

turned down collar

bow tie

File:WEB DuBois 1918.jpg











Fashion Term: Turned down round collar






In 1925 the era of the baggy pants dawned. This fashion would influence men's wear for three decades. Oxford bags were first worn by Oxford undergraduates, eager to circumvent the University’s prohibition on knickers. The style originated when knickers were banned in the classroom. As the bags measured anywhere from twenty-two inches to forty inches around the bottoms, they could easily be slipped on over the forbidden knickers.  John Wanamaker introduced Oxford bags to the American public in the spring of 1925, although Ivy League students visiting Oxford in 1924 had already adopted the style. The trousers were originally made of flannel and appeared in shades of biscuit, silver gray, fawn, lovat, blue gray, and pearl gray.

Collars and cuffs were made to be removable from 1860s through to 1930s.  Because they wore under shirts the only contact places of the skin and shirt were at the collar and cuffs.


Stand up collar and cravat

See examples of US Presidents in Photo dating by facial hair table. It is a good table for lapels, hairstyles, collars, shirts, jackets, etc.





A Straight 2" Stand Up collar worn from 1880-1920 for formal wear.  

 High Imperial Collar - This 2˝” high collar was popular from 1890 to 1905 for formal wear.
















Neck Ties

The Cravat also originated these variants, still worn today:

The Paisley patterned neck tie was adapted in India 1800s to 1850 soldiers brought them from the town of Paisley, Renfrewshire to Scotland, where the design was nicknamed Paisley and spread to shawls. 




1880s Bow Tie. Zoomed in sample, below.





Ascot,1880s  Traditionally patterned silk, formal, folded and fastened with a stickpin or tie tack. It is usually reserved for wear with morning dress or formal daytime weddings and worn with a cutaway morning coat and striped gray trousers. This type of dress cravat is made of a thicker, woven type of silk similar to a modern tie and is traditionally either gray or black. In British English a more casual "day cravat" is different from the highly formal dress cravat by ornate and colorful printed patterns.



same stand up collar, huge knot tie, short lapels.














Type: Card de visite

Photo Dating Notes: Wide Lapels came back into fashion.

Circa: 1871 






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