With a A little research I found a bit of information about the James. S. Shaff who took this photograph--b. 1850, he had a photo studio in Seneca, KS from about 1885-1895, after which he became, according to census data, a band teacher in Oklahoma, and finally a farmer in New Mexico! Certainly there have been plenty of tornadoes in Kansas to document the effects of; I might guess the portrait of destruction here dates to 1895 in the aftermath of the F5 "Tri-State Tornado,” one of the worst of all time (and perhaps what drove Shaff out of Kansas?!) Quite a sight, punctuated by a handful of sturdy wooden chairs, which fared much better than the structures. I love the drama of our hatted man in long coat standing on the precipice.
4 1/2" x 6 1/2" and in good antique condition with general wear and one small blue pen surface mark.