Saturday, 23 February 2013

Sepia Saturday - Families Together

 
 Each week, Sepia Saturday, provides an opportunity for genealogy bloggers to share their family history through photographs.

This week's prompt was of an unknown family group.  I have chosen to focus on families together, beginning with a tale of my mystery photograph - it took 12 years for me to confirm who it was!


This photogrpah came to me  in 2000 from the  collection of my great aunt Jennie Danson, daughter of Maria Danson, nee Rawcliffe.  Maria was one of five surviving sisters.  Jennie had identified so many of her many photographs, it was frustrating to find this photo unnamed. But it must have meant something at sometime to have been kept.  By a process of elimination I suspected  from  the family composition and ages of the children, it could well be sister Alice, her husband John Mason, eldest daughter Jane Elizabeth who never married and two younger children. possibly Florence and Harold.   They had 11 children in total - 6 in Fleetwood, Lancashire and 5 in Brooklyn, New York.  The family emigrated to America 1886-7 but there was nothing to indicate where the photograph had been taken.
 
Despite a stream of pleas on  website messaqge boards,  I got nowhere, until a blog posting on my mystery photograph at long last  produced results and I was contacted by the granddaughter of Florence (above) who had a copy of the  very same photogrpah but identified as taken in New York.  My newly found third cousin Bonnie also provided me with an update of the  family group, (below)  with Florence and Harold front right, and eldest sister Jane back left.  Taken in 1920's. 
 
A wonderful find - so take heart, have patience and you could be successful in identifying your mystery photograph.  
 
 
 
Below is another sister of Alice and Maria - Jane who married George Riley.  She is pictured here with four generations of her family - son George (left), grandson Jack (right) and baby George Robert who sadly died in infancy.   The photograph came to me from internet contact  Michael, a Riley descendant.  
 
 
 
Here c.1908  is the third sister Maria, my great grandmother,  with her daughter Jennie - the youngest and only daughter of eleven children (9 surviving infancy).  The little child  at the front is Maria's granddaughter Annie Maria Danson, whose mother died from TB when Annie was only one year old.  and she and her father John  made their  home with Maria.  Sadly John died during the First World War, leaving Annie an orphan at a young age.
 
 
 
 
 I love this group photograph of my grandmother  Alice Danson, nee English (who I never knew) with her children Edith, Kathleen (my mother), Harry and baby Billy.  Taken 1916 when my grandfather William Danson was marching out to war.
 
 
 
And to bring us more up to date a typical 1950's family - my parents with myself and brother Christopher - probably taken by my aunt who often joined us on outings. By today's standards, we are very formally dressed for a picnic, with my father wearing a jacket, collar & tie and my mother a stylish dress and necklace.   I am in my school blazer and note my  Clark sandals that all little girls seemed to wear then.   

 

 
 
Click HERE to discover other mystery photographs and family groups  
 

16 comments:

  1. Thank you for the hope. I dream that someday I will be in touch with someone who has a matching photo to many of my unknowns.

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  2. Ah yes.. I had a pair of those sandals.. 'comfortable and sensible'.

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  3. I'm happy you have the bug or rather desire to do this, because it makes Sepia Saturday so much the better!

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  4. What a great collection of photos. I loved those Clark sandals. Weird I know.

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  5. It wasn't just girls who wore Clark sandals; if I remember rightly my boys did too. Now I just were Clarks wide-fitting shoes, Delightful photos here.

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  6. I too am a part of the Clark's sandal generation - they were such wonderfully chunky things. And thanks for giving hope to all those of us who are in search of unknowns. A lovely post, thanks.

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  7. Oh yes the Clarkes sandals. Both my husband I remember wearing them....so why did we make our own children wear them too? Lovely pictures Sue and I can see why are so taken with the one of your grandmother and her children.

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  8. You have a nice collection of family photos. That was really lucky that someone with the same photo as the first one saw yours and was able to identity it.

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  9. Now there's a happy ending. There's hope yet.
    PS I used to love wearing my Clark shoes - they were so comfortable.

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  10. A fine collection of family group portraits this week thank you. I despair when I hear of photos from family collections being thrown away because the subjects are unidentified.

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  11. In the fifties not only did we picnic in collar and tie, we also had fishing matches where the contestants were better dressed than some modern day wedding attendants.

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  12. What a nice collection of photos. I love to see the progression from oldest to newest (the one of your family in the 50s) starting with no smiles and ending with all your big smiles.
    Nancy

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  13. People have been telling me to post my unknowns on message boards, and your success has inspired me. I WILL do it!

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  14. Definitely good advice for patience and persistence...and the advantages of blogging. A real success story.

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  15. Your description of the persistence with which you pursued the identities of this picture sounded, o, so familiar. And when finally someone out there in cyberspace finally connects, it makes all the effort worth while. Also, I really liked the collection and how you put it all together. Very nice.

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