The Players

Napoleon Sarony, Self Portrait
Napoleon Sarony, Self Portrait
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Napoleon Sarony (1821-1896)
In chapter 43 of Dreiser's novel, Carrie's "picture appeared in one of the weeklies." Upon advice from a castmate, she had some portraits taken by the famous photographer Napoleon Sarony, where the paper apparently got the photograph. Sarony played "starmaker" for countless actors and actresses in the second half of the 19th century. As Ben Bassham asserts in his book on Sarony's theatrical photographs, "the best-known, most sought after and most prolific photographer in America was an eccentric little man named Napoleon Sarony."22

Among his other, more famous subjects are the players below, all of whom appear (at least by name) in Sister Carrie.

Joseph JeffersonSarah BernhardtE.H. SothernFanny Davenport

Theatrical History in Sister Carrie

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