Apologies for the break! I have been knee-deep in Canadian archives for one of my projects.
A colleague brought my attention to this “genealogy” of LOLcats, and The Laughing Cat caught my eye.
I’ve unearthed the following information about this expressive feline:
At some point in 1925, a photographer named Russell Hamm was visiting a woman’s home on behest of his newspaper to photograph a mother cat with an astoundingly large litter (15 kittens!). During this visit, the woman called his attention to the cat she had been “training” to make facial expressions. This photograph was taken as the cat performed this contrived “laugh.”
This photo earned $13,000 (and we’re talking early twentieth-century dollars) in the course of 15 years, yet the name of the photographer (who went on to become staff photographer for the Chicago Daily News) fell into obscurity.
You can have your own….