Sepia Saturday

Sepia Saturday

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Bib Overalls.......

A scene of a mother showing off her brood of boys at the back farmhouse door.  My brothers Rex and Ron in the front and the young one is Dwight.  By the age of Dwight who was born in February, 1947, I will date this as 1948.

Being the youngest brother, I find these pictures of my older brothers fascinating to see.  I didn't see them young so I can actually watch them grow up in the early pictures.  Ron is the oldest and Rex has already taken a growth spurt to be taller than his older brother. He remained the tallest until Dwight was in his late teens.

The overalls were a common thing that my brothers wore as I see them in them in most of their pictures.  I am sure they were handed down to the youngest as time went on.  My dad wore bib overalls all of his life daily.  When he did put on a pair of belted pants for dress up he looked very uncomfortable and unusual.

While sorting photos I found a different sign of the same theme at Wounded Knee in which I posted last week.  What I find interesting is that the era of commercial billboards posted everywhere was going on at this time.  Lady Bird Johnson, President Johnson's wife started the movement to remove all of the hundreds of signs that use to line the roads and byways.  In this picture it looks like we are along a gravel road, and yet one may need to buy gas and here is a sign to direct you. It is strategically set up for viewing while you read the historic marker.

Check out the other participants in Sepia Saturday by clicking here.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

1957 in Black and White,,,,,,

As I sort through the boxes of photos I chose to give you a few shots of the year 1957.  I am sure that there are many more than these but I found a few for today.

Above are my first cousins Gene Brown and Jeanette Brown in 1957.  I think they are about 3 years old.  Eugene is the son of my Uncle Kenny and Aunt Sylvia Brown.  Jeanette is the daughter of my Uncle Marvin and Aunt Lois Brown.

The photo is the only one that I know that shows the inside living room of my Grandmother Brooks house when she lived on the farm.  The door behind them goes to a porch.  I always liked the bookcase desk that sits to the left of them but that was left behind when my Grandmother moved to town.

My dad had been in the service and traveled overseas because of the war.  Even though it wasn't a good experience for him it did turn him into an explorer.  We took a road trip in 1956 to see the mountains in Colorado.  In 1957 we returned via a route through the Dakotas and and Wyoming.  Here I am with my mom in front of the sign that depicts the site of the battleground of  Wounded Knee. I was too young to even begin to understand all that happened here.  I do believe tragedy is an understatement to the times of how people treated each other in the settling of this country. The sign says it all happen in December of 1890.  As a frame of family reference, my mom's mother was born in 1897 just seven years after this.  It shows that my grandmother was living in a time before the country was completely settled  in the the west.

This photo is out of sequence if this was a travel guide as Mt. Rushmore is in South Dakota.  Changes in the tourist's viewing area but the guys in the rock remain the same.

My two brothers Ron and Rex were in the marching band during their high school years.  The photo at left is actually taken in 1956 of Rex with our farm dog Tippy.  I show this photo to introduce the next photo that was taken in the Des Moines area.

On an island along the Des Moines river was a place where they created a recreational place for the public.  There was a ballroom built there and also a small amusement park with rides in a park like area.  The place was called Riverview Park.  One rode your car over a rickety wooden bridge to get to the place.

As a promotional in the summer, schools were asked to come and play concerts.  Murray High School band was there in 1957.   I really can't identify either of my brothers on stage but I bet they can tell you who each of the baton twirlers were.  I know that a first cousin of mine Colleen Brown was one of them and that girls with the last name of Burnett, Willet, and Brammer are in that group as they were class mates of my brothers.  I don't know if Rex's girlfriend Janet Dugger was one of them or not.

As a small town farm boy, this was quite an outing to get to go to this park.  We also were able to take a speed boat ride up and down the river as one of the amusement rides. The site today has been returned to the natural landscape with trees and wild life.  The ballroom mysteriously burned down and that was the demise of the whole operation.

I don't know quite sure how this picture of my brother Dwight, 1949-2008, fits in here but it is in 1956 that it was taken.  I guess it shows the way we all looked at the time during the fifties. 

The last photo says it was taken in 1959 but I am sure it was just late getting it developed.  The is our 1957 Ford Fairlane car.  The part of the photo that amazes me is where it is sitting.  It is parked in the town of Murray, Iowa.  I know that it is in the side street, south of my Grandmother Burgus' home because of the houses that I see in the background.  Across the street on the corner is the Maffitt house.  They were grandparents to one of my classmates Katty Maffitt Gaumer.  The house next to them belonged to a family named Little.   Their one daughter was unable to walk and she went to high school in a wheel chair.  She had to be carried up two flights of stairs at the school each day probably more that once or twice during the school day.

The years have passed and it is remarkable how the memories come back as one views the old black and whites.  They aren't sepia in nature but the family black and whites really are a thing of the past.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Mattie's Album, part 2

Martha (Mattie) Selena Mobley Wheeler was my Great grandmother born in January 1867.  This is her autograph book that she first received signatures in 1889.  She was 22 years old when a cousin wrote in  her book.  She kept the book and had friends and family continue writing verses to her throughout the years. The later days include verses from a son-in-law and a son.


If you mary a man and he is a clipper,
make him acquainted with two of your slipper.

                     Your cousin,

                     Ada Mobley

June 30th 90

When the golden sun is setting,
and your mind for care is free.
When of other friends you are thinking
will you some times think of me.

Your friend,
F. M. Longshore

This was a writing that I almost missed. It was done by her son Elva Wheeler. It is written in pencil and I had to intensify the contrast to see it.

Elva is the second guy on left as is written.

and Santa as there is just one,
I wish sum way or other,
you'd bring along to share
say today a jolly little brother.

Your son Elva.

My grandfather LeRoy Brown married her daughter in 1913 and he wrote in it the next year.

Jan. Sunday 4, 1914
Dear Mother,
When the Golden Sun is setting and sits to shine no more.
God promises in heaven to keep us,
Where trubble shall Be no more.
Your sun,      L. M. Brown

To be honest, I know very little of  my grandfather Brown.  His one son is still living but I really have never heard any discussion of the kind of man that  he was.  The hand  writing is amazing.  He projects himself as a tough looking thin guy in some of  his later photos but still I don't know much.  Everyone was very poor and he was no exception. My mother said that they moved every year, each year, so she was always in a different country school. He did own a barber chair and it was said people would line up at the house for free haircuts on Sundays.  I was told that he dug graves for cemeteries.  He died in 1937. I do know that he came for family in Illinois and the most of his uncle and aunts could not read or write.  So seeing the handwriting he must  have attended country school to learn script.

I do need to return to the book from my Great grandmother. As I kept exploring the album I kept finding earlier dates.  I guess the 1889 us the earliest date.  I had to go back and correct my math on the earlier blog as I just didn't subtract it right.  It has been an interesting find and I bet the cousins in the Lorimor and Winterset area might know of some of the people in the book.  I will be on the hunt for the back of this album as it is missing and who know what I will find next.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Great Grandma Wheeler......

It is just one of those things that lay in the room of family history. It really is still looking like the junk room but I found something new on Friday. 

I do remember that it was up there amongst much material but I had not picked it up to read it.  I thought it looked like the autograph books of my era that the girls had friends write sweet things. I figured it was my mom's.

When I picked it up and read the date of 1889 I was very surprised and excited. This belong to some older person  and the woman was a 26 year old girl by the name of Mattie.  She was my Great grandmother on my mom's side.

Martha (Mattie) Selena Mobley born in January 1876. It is her album made of learned sayings that children memorized and probably practice writing with pen and ink. The writings are in verse and are from friends and also family members.

Mattie Selena Mobley was the daughter of Hezikiah Mobley and Frances Orilda Gilbert. She was born in 1876 and died in 1941.

She was married to Cyrus Henry Wheeler,  ( b. 1872, d. 1948) in 1894. She became Mattie Wheeler.

So let me get back to this album. It is going to take two weeks to post everything that I want to share. I really am still in the research phase of this as I am trying to find identities to some of the writers.

Friend Mattie,
When you get old and can not see,                                 
put on your specks and think of me.
     Rebecca Heater 10/11/90

Dear Mattie,
"Be courteous to all,
But intimate with few.
and let those few be,
Well tried before you
give them your confidence."
1890-6-2      Sincerely yours, Bertha Meaus
 This is  one of the earliest writings which would have been when she was 22 years old.  She must have cherished the book as there are additions in 1893 and on into 1914.

Dear Friend,            Jan. 4, 1917
When in some far and distant land,
you view the writing of my hand,
Just turn your thoughts to me Your Friend,
Ellen Gilbert

This is an interesting one as Mattie was related to Gilbert's.  It probably was actually her first cousin.

I have more to share with this as I have found a son Elva's writing and my grandfather Brown, her son in law has written in the book.  More to come next posting.

Click here to view others who are participating with Sepia Saturday.