Figure 1.-- This carte de visite (CDV) pprtrait is of Oskar and Toni von Treskow, a Prussian nobel family. The portrait is undated, but looks like the 1860s to us. Toni, the younger child, wears a white baby dress. Oskar, the older child, wears a cut-away jacket suit with long pants or only slightly shortened-length pants. The jacket has Zouave-styled emroidery. Pantalettes were still worn by girls and younger boys. In this case Oskar seems to have white frills sewed onto the hem of his pants to emulate pantalettes.

Oskar and Toni von Treskow (Germany, 1860s)

This carte de visite (CDV) pprtrait is of a brother and sister. The dealer reports that they were Oskar and Toni von Freskow. A reader tells us, however, "I am sure that the correct spelling of the name is von Treskow, a well-known Prussian noble family." The portrait is undated, but looks like the 1860s to us. Toni, the younger child, wears a white baby dress. Notice the black neck band. A German reader tells us, "I am convinced that Toni von Treskow is a boy, not a girl. Toni with an 'i' in Germany is a boy's nickname for Anton." Another German reader tlls us, "I think the child is a girl. 'Toni' can be used for a girl called Antonia." A French reader who lived in Austria writes, "Toni when I lived in Austria was a boy's nickname, but this portrait dates from the mid-19th century and at that time it could have also been a nickname for Antonia as the German reader mentions. I'm sure that today in Germany and France Toni is only a boy's name." Oskar, the boy, has longish hair almost covering his ears. He wears a cut-away jacket suit which he wears with long pants or only slightly shortened-length pants. The jacket has Zouave-styled emroidery. I am not sure to what extent Prussians (Germany was not yet unified) would have seen the jacket as Zouave (meaning French) inspired. His outfit is a tree-piece suit with a vest (waistcoat). Oskar has a small ruffled collar, but no sign of blouse wrist cuffs. The pants had front side pockets which can be seen as the boy has his left hand in one. (This was a convention used by photographers to help children hold their hands still.) Pantalettes were still worn by girls and younger boys. In this case Oskar seems to have white frills sewed onto the hem of his pants to emulate pantalettes. We haven't noted this practice before. The cildren look to be about 2-4 years old. The portrait was taken by A & F Zeuschner, Posen, Germany. Posen was the capital of a province contested for centuries between Poland and Prussia/Germany. It is now Poznań in Poland. General Henning von Treskow during World War II was in the plot to kill Hitler (July 20, 1944). He was arrested after the plot failed and hanged by the NAZIs. We wonder if he could he have been the grandson of one of the Treskow children in the portrait here?

Von Treskow Fmily

This carte de visite (CDV) pprtrait is of a brother and sister. The dealer reports that they were Oskar and Toni von Freskow. A reader tells us, however, "I am sure that the correct spelling of the name is von Treskow, a well-known Prussian noble family." The cildren look to be about 2-4 years old.

Chronology

The portrait is undated, but looks like the 1860s to us. CDVs became the primary portrait format in the 1860s. Both the pose and garments suggest the 1860s to us.

Toni

Toni, the younger child, wears a white baby dress. Notice the black neck band. A German reader tells us, "I am convinced that Toni von Treskow is a boy, not a girl. Toni with an 'i' in Germany is a boy's nickname for Anton." Another German reader tlls us, "I think the child is a girl. 'Toni' can be used for a girl called Antonia." A French reader who lived in Austria writes, "Toni when I lived in Austria was a boy's nickname, but this portrait dates from the mid-19th century and at that time it could have also been a nickname for Antonia as the German reader mentions. I'm sure that today in Germany and France Toni is only a boy's name."

Oskar

Oskar, the boy, looks to be about 4 years old. He has longish hair almost covering his ears. He wears a cut-away jacket suit which he wears with long pants or only slightly shortened-length pants. The jacket has Zouave-styled emroidery. I am not sure to what extent Prussians (Germany was not yet unified) would have seen the jacket as Zouave (meaning French) inspired. His outfit is a tree-piece suit with a vest (waistcoat). Oskar has a small ruffled collar, but no sign of blouse wrist cuffs. The pants had front side pockets which can be seen as the boy has his left hand in one. (This was a convention used by photographers to help children hold their hands still.) Pantalettes were still worn by girls and younger boys. In this case Oskar seems to have white frills sewed onto the hem of his pants to emulate pantalettes. We haven't noted this practice before.

Portrait

The portrait was taken by A & F Zeuschner, Posen, Germany.

Posen

Posen was the capital of a province contested for centuries between Poland and Prussia/Germany. Prussia acquired the province in the Polish Partitions (18th century). It became part of the German Empire after German unification. The Germans persued a policy of Germinfication ad discouraged Polish culture and the use of the Polish laguage. The province was transferred to the new indeopendent Polish Republic in the World War I peace settlement. The NAZIs seized the province in World War II (September 1939) and anexed it to the Reich. The NAZIs commited a wide range of attroicities as they began deporting ethnic Poles and replacing them with German settlers, in many cases Germas from the Baltics. After World War II the province was transferred back to Poland. It is now Poznań in Poland.

Word War II Bomb Plot (1944)

General Henning von Treskow during World War II was involved with the July Bomb Plot to kill Hitler (July 20, 1944). He was arrested after the plot failed and hanged by the NAZIs. We wonder if he could he have been the grandson of one of the Treskow children in the portrait here?






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Created: 1:42 AM 2/10/2008
Last edited: 4:58 PM 2/16/2010