In his younger and more vulnerable years, F. Scott Fitzgerald dressed up like a ballin' little baby.
This we know from a 120-year-old photo that captures Fitzgerald during his early days growing up in St. Paul. The image is enough to put the most stylish toddler you know to shame.
The photo is specified as a cyanotype, a reference to the bluish tint that dominates the image. But when we look at it, all we can see is green, cuz this little boy is money.
Dated to "approximately 1897," this photo captures F. Scott Fitzgerald at about a year old. Off to the viewer's right, that's Fitzgerald's mom, Mary (Mollie) Fitzgerald, born Mollie McQuillan, daughter of a wealthy St. Paul food wholesaler.
Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald, as you can see, was a child of privilege, which in the 1890s apparently meant dressing up like you might be about to get on stage with the Commodores.
His youthful countenance reveals a little annoyance in this image, perhaps a testament to an early wariness of intrusive paparazzi. ("No pictures! Not even cyanotype!") Fitzgerald was also known to be a colicky tot, often sick, which could help explain that expression.
Plus he's only one year old, which can also kind of suck.
The Fitzgeralds are depicted outside his birth home at 481 Laurel Avenue in St. Paul, one of numerous noteworthy St. Paul landmarks in Fitzgerald's biography. It was at this home, around this time, that young Scott spoke his first word: "Up."
Biographers like to read hindsight-infused insight into this fact, suggesting Gatsby author was inclined toward social climbing since birth. Looking at this picture, we'd posit another theory: He was trying to say "[Pick me] up [and fix my collar, for I shall need to look swell in this picture]." A century and a score later, he still does.
Swag on against the current, little Scott.
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