From the Lincoln, Lawrence, Franklin Library's John Holly Williams collection, Unidentified groups, 1850 to 1920.
I'm going out on a limb here and suggest that this is a mother posing with her four young sons, all of whom are decked out in "Sunday Best" suits and ties. They are seated at a small table adorned with an "open work" tablecloth, china cups and saucers, a silver teapot and a creamer and sugar bowl and what appears to be a large candy dish.
I detect faint smiles on at least of three of the faces, Momma included, which seemingly bucks a trend of folks not smiling for the camera way back when.
Behind them is a paneled screen adorned with Oriental designs. Based on the woman's "Gibson Girl" hairstyle and her dress, I suspect this photo was taken in the early 1900s but before World War I broke out, when the Gibson Girl look -- made popular by Life Magazine's publication of John Dana Gibson's illustrations of the idealized "modern" woman -- and its requisite corsets, fell out of favor.
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