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Archive for the ‘Photographs’ Category

My great-grandmother had several fascinating pictures of black World War I soldiers. Most were unnamed, but a few had partial names written on them. This one said “MMomon” on the back. After searching LOST for many years, I finally figured out that my great-grandmother’s biological mother had the last name “Merriman”. Because of the resemblance and the surname, I suspect this is possibly a half-brother of my great-grandmother.

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I thought I’d post pictures from a wonderful black history tour I took in Boston a few years ago–if you’re there, check it out. I had no idea of the depth of black history that is in Boston–lots of famed black abolitionists and stops on the Underground Railroad, especially up on Beacon Hill. We toured the Granary Burial Ground, one of the oldest in the nation. The remains of the victims of the Boston massacre are there, including the black (and possibly native american) man, Crispus Attucks. Paul Revere is here, along with 3 signers of the Declaration and a huge mountain of a tombstone for Benjamin Franklin’s parents. Before this tour, I’d never seen headstones from the 1600/1700s before.

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Wordless Wednesday

Red Bird, OK

Red Bird, OK

In addition to my love of old photographs of people, I have found I really like photos that show some social history. This was in my great-grandmother’s possession, and she had an aunt who married a Sol Bradley. So, I am not sure, but perhaps she is the “Mrs. S.B. Bradley” who owned the store shown in this postcard also? She traveled away from Tennessee a lot and I was amazed to find that Red Bird was one of those all-black towns in Oklahoma. I love this photo…this is probably what an early 20th century, black-owned country store looked like. Pretty neat, huh?

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TheoThis is my cousin, Theodore Prather (gloriously aged 94) standing in front of his mother’s headstone (Sarah Copelin) in Montgomery County, MD. Sarah is actually shown 7th from the left in the picture that heads my blog above. Those are members of the Prather family. My grandmother is on the far right end. We are having almost a 200-person reunion in 2 weeks that the family has been planning for about 5 months. I am sooo excited!

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Wordless Wednesday

UnknownWomanOne of my all-time favorite pictures, this was in a cache of tintypes that belonged to my great-grandmother, Vannie Harbour in TN. I fantasize that she is a relative of mine…but who? The date is ca. late 1890’s, early 1900’s. Her expression is so mystifying to me. How old do you all think she is?

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I can’t go totally wordless:  Hardin County, Tennessee, Holtsville School, ca. 1912. My great-grandmother, Vannie Lee Harbour is the girl on the far right, middle row with the great big bow on her head.

Holtsville School

Holtsville School

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luther_teenToday, I am thinking about my Granddad, Luther Holt. He was born in Hardin County, TN in 1921 and died in Virginia in 1993. Boy do I miss him. I started doing genealogy after he died, and that’s one of my big regrets. I think he would have truly enjoyed all of this.

Luther was something else. He was a tough guy, always the only adult who would curse around my brother and I , which we found simply hilarious. But he had a heart of gold when it came to us. We’d spend summers in Dayton, Ohio and hang out at his house and also my grandmother’s house. My memories of those times are very special. He bought my brother and I some chickens once–the hen laid an egg and I was so Luther_Slick_Large2amazed! He had a boat that he’d take us out in all the time. He was the first grown up to teach me how to drive (I was 14). He’d play Uno with me for hours, and he bought the best cards for me on my birthday that were always on time. He was just so much fun to be with. I’ll never forget how clean his house was. I’ll never forget him smoking those cigars all the time. This post is for you, Granddaddy. Rest in peace;)

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