Cartes De Visits, Josie Mansfield + Jim Fisk

  • $240.00
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These mini carts de visits measure about 2.25" x 4". The photos are mounted on heavy cardstock type paper with their names printed on the bottom. We aren't sure of the method of printing or adhesive. There are several pinpricks in Josie's picture and both ahve small amounts of discoloration. See photos for detail!

Here's the story behind Col James Fisk Jr and Josephine Mansfield:

Colonel James “Jubilee Jim” Fisk (1835-1872) was a super wealthy industrialist robber baron who was behind the Black Friday gold panic of 1869. He also was a loving husband to a well-kept lesbian woman and greatly admired by the folks working on the Erie Railroad. Did I mention he was rich beyond belief? He’d pass $100 bills on to ladies he admired.

Of course he took a liking to the most beautiful woman in all of New York’s gilded age, Helen Josephine “Josie” Mansfield. She was the hottest of hot, but 1967 found her destitute after years of abuse and a nasty divorce. It took months, but she allowed Jubilee Jim AKA Diamond Jim to woo her with cash and a fancy home and so, so many jewels.

This was a fine arrangement for a time, but know what Jim wasn’t? Handsome. You know who was? Edward “Ned” Stiles Stokes, a business associate of Jim’s. Josie fell for him and hard and was pretty bummed out when she tried to break it off with Jim and he didn’t think the three of them could all be friends. She and Ned decided the best course of action was to extort money from Jim and sue him for libel when he accused her of her scheme. Jim got back at them by having Ned arrested for embezzlement and seems to have been blackmailing him.

Did you know the Colt House Revolver is called the Jim Fisk pistol? It’s because that was the weapon Ned used to shoot him at the Grand Central Hotel in January of 1872. Ned was tried thrice, convicted, and spent 4 years in Sing Sing and Auburn Prisons.

Meanwhile, Josie eloped with Ella Wesner, a famous male impersonator on the Vaudeville circuit and they lived a scandalous life Paris for a time. She later married and divorced a lawyer in London and lived several other lives at Josie Welton and Mary Lawler and eventually died in at age 83 while shopping in Paris.


JM. 052321.001.2Pics