That is Stan Laurel, half of the comedic team of Laurel and Hardy, famous from the movies of the black & white era, famous from the caricatures in the cartoons our children, perhaps, have seen. The photo is circa 1958.
Oliver Hardy died in 1957 from a series of strokes, and Laurel suffered a stroke himself. He was unable to make movies any more, he said. But he did bother to personally answer all his correspondence from fans. On the typewriter pictured, he typed out short notes in response the fan mail, like this one, from 1958:
Laurel died in 1965. It’s a bygone era.
No, I haven’t identified the typewriter.
The text of the note can be found at Mike Lynch Cartoons. I gather Lynch got the images from Letters of Note, a blog devoted to written correspondence of some historic value (it’s very interesting).
- Laurel and Hardy in “Nothing But Trouble,” 1944