Sunday, June 28, 2009

Weekend With Shades - Sunday - June 28

A Monthly - Weekend With Shades - Column

That's right; good ol' Uncle Sam has a treasure trove of photographs dating from the earliest days of photography in America and he'll let you have [most of] them at no cost and free of copyright restrictions. You already knew that, didn't you? You know all about the Library of Congress's various collections; you know that the Smithsonian has a Flickr site; and of course you know about the National Archives photo collections.

In fact, those collections just barely scratch the surface of the millions of photographs that the government owns, and which may be available to you. Virtually every government agency from the CIA to the Natural Resources Conservation Service has photographs in their archives that you may be interested in having. So how do you get your hands on Uncle Sam's photo treasures?


Saturday, June 27, 2009

Weekend With Shades - Saturday - June 27

A Monthly - Weekend With Shades -

When it comes to summer vacations, it helps to maintain a sense of humor. The same can certainly be said for vacation photos. On vacations in the pre-digital camera age, photographers were limited by the amount of money they had for film and developing. This resulted in a certain stinginess when it came to taking photos. If that one photo you took in front of Mt. Fuji was fuzzy, that was your only shot. Which explains why a lot of out-of-focus photos exist in my parents' collection of photos. Or the family went away for an entire summer and you have three photos to show for it.

Today, we don't have that problem, but the opposite...a glorious glut of photographs. It's free, take another! We don't have to print them all! After the vacation photo-taking blitzkrieg ends, you can be left with hundreds of photos from your two weeks away. If you have had to suffer, or rather ENDURE, with either a computer-generated slide-show or a phone-book size photo album of Aunt Suzie's trip to the Blarney Stone, raise your hand! Better yet, if you are the one making your family suffer, raise BOTH hands!


Thursday, June 25, 2009

Many Things Thursday - Mourning Visiting Cards

"The time has come," the Walrus said, "to talk of many things."

Thursday, on Shades Of The Departed, will be dedicated to
many things,
and nothing in particular.

Many Things Thursday

The footnoteMaven also writes the History Hare Column (The Hare Of The History That Bit You) for The Graveyard Rabbit Online Journal. In this month's article you'll find a discussion of the purchase of several mourning visiting cards and the very interesting story uncovered. Below is an excerpt of the article that can be found in the Graveyard Rabbit Online Journal.


Often when researching, I am taken completely by surprise when a simple "nothing extraordinary" photograph or piece of ephemera, turns out to be anything but simple. When research starts it often takes on a life of its own and literally explodes.

So it was with a group of visiting cards I purchased. The group was of fifty plain, name only, no decoration, visiting cards, early 1900s. I purchased them because the lot description said there were two cards with black borders. I hoped these were mourning cards, but the seller did not know and was just getting rid of some paper ephemera he had purchased at an estate sale. I purchased them, hoping they'd be what I was looking for.

Mrs. Burd Grubb
July 1913

Read the entire story on The Graveyard Rabbit Online Journal.


Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Twice Told Tuesday - The New State Law

Twice Told Tuesday features a photography related article
from old photography books, magazines, and newspapers.

"Adam lay down and slept—and from his side
A woman in her magic beauty rose;
Dazzled and charmed, he called that woman 'bride'
And his first sleep became his last repose."

~Unknown ~

Here's The Proper Way To Be Married
April 12, 1908

The New State Law

Since Jan. 1 of this year the old marriage law of New York State has been changed, and now both the bride and bridegroom-to-be must perforce to go personally to the Registry Office at City Hall to sign and obtain their marriage license, and this should be done some days before the marriage is to take place, although of course, the religious ceremony may be solemnized immediately after the State Certificate has been returned to the city officials.

The clergyman, too, must be visited not less than a week prior to the date determined upon for the wedding, that the State certificate may be signed by him and that the certificate of the church may be filled in and signed by the contracting parties, and naturally also the minister must be consulted in regard to the time, date, and place for the service. To have all the plans carefully made out and invitations issued and then to find that the desired prelate will not be able to officiate simply because the importance of his being present had been temporarily overlooked has be known to have occurred more than once, and the disappointment ensuing was no less great because by that time unavoidable

Under the new statutes a marriage license must be taken out in the town or city of which the bride, not the bridegroom, is a resident.

If the bridegroom is under 21 years of age or the bride under 18 the consent of the parents must previously be obtained, but this last is not new law, although, perhaps, more frequently violated than all others of recent years.


Anonymous. "Here's The Proper Way To Be Married." The New York Times, 12 April 1908. Online archives. : 2009.


Sneve, Willie & First Wife. Unknown. Cabinet Card. Unknown.
Privately held by the footnoteMaven, Preston, Washington. 2009.


Sunday, June 21, 2009

Sometimes Main Street Is The Whole Town

Out where the handclasp's a little stronger,
Out where the smile dwells a little longer,
That's where the west begins
~ Arthur Chapman ~
1873 - 1935

Often in the early 1900s, in the far reaches of Montana, main street and the entire "town" were synonymous. Such was Merrill Avenue and Glendive, Montana.

History of Place

Glendive is the county seat of Dawson County, Montana. It is located in eastern Montana along the Yellowstone River near the badlands. The population of Dawson county in 1900 was 2,443, and 12,725 in 1910, an increase of 421 per cent. This increase was due to the arrival of the railroad and to the building of the dam at Intake, Montana, a short distance from the town.Today the population of Glendive is around 4700 people.

Glendive Creek was named by Sir George Gore, the eighth baronet of Gore Manor, County of Donegal, in northern Ireland. Wealthy, educated at Oxford, Gore never married. The two great loves of his life were hunting and fishing. Receiving $200,00 in rental income a year he could indulge his every whim with regard to hunting and fishing. He visited the vicinity on a hunting trip in 1856, and named the creek Glendive Creek because it reminded him of a stream by that name in Ireland. The name of the city was taken from the stream.

Gore hired the best mountain men of the day as his guides, including Jim Bridger. His hunting party traveled from Fort Laramie down the Powder River to the Yellowstone River, then over to the Tongue River.

The hunting party consisted of four six-mule wagons, two three-yoke ox wagons, and twenty-one French carts, each painted red and drawn by two horses. With it were forty or more employees, one hundred and twelve horses – including one that slept with Gore in the harsh winter months, twelve yoke of oxen, three milk cows, and fourteen hunting dogs. He had a ten by eighteen foot linen tent with a brass bedstead. During the winter he would build a cabin.

A wagon was required for Gore’s arms. There were seventy-five rifles, twelve or fifteen shotguns, and a large number of pistols, all bearing the names of famous makers. Two vehicles were required to haul the fishing tackle, and a skilled fly maker was part of the hunting party.

Gore's party spent the winter at the mouth of the Tongue River where they were reported to have killed 6,000 bison, 1,600 elk and deer, and 105 grizzly bears. This is rather typical of the British hunters who traveled the American West. Gore's distinction was he spent more time, more money, and killed more animals. He was not highly regarded.

History of Post Card

This is a Real Photo Postcard (RPPC), as previously discussed in Big Wheels. The way you tell the difference between an RPPC and a printed post card is to look at the card under a magnifying glass. If the photo is printed, you will see that it is made up of a lot of little dots, the same as a photo printed in a newspaper. A Real Photo Postcard is solid, no dots. This post card is solid no dots.

RPPCs can be designated as such on the back of the post card. "Real photograph" is printed on the back of this card. The surface of the card is smooth and shiny, as opposed to dull and rough, another indication of this being a real photograph. Photo cards often have captions that are part of the picture and look handwritten, as here. This postcard lists L.A. Foster Photo Co. on the back as the photographer. It is rather rare to list the photographer. Taking all these facts into consideration, I have determined this is a real photo post card.

The "Greetings From Glendive, Mont." post card is postally unused, meaning it was never mailed. We will not have the benefit of a stamp or postmark to assist with the dating. To date this post card we need to look at three things; the photographer, the date the post card was produce, and the date the photograph was taken.

Dating This Postcard

The Photographer

The L.A. Foster Photo Co., of Glendive, Montana, was owned by Lewis A. Foster. A Lewis E. Foster was sent to Glendive in 1903 as an agent of the Bureau of Forestry. It is unclear as to whether Lewis E. and Lewis A. are the same person.

Around 1910, Foster, a former county commissioner, became one of Glendive's photographers. He ran a gift shop and made a hobby of photography. His specialty was “events” – taking pictures of things happening locally. He made those pictures into postcards and sold them in his shop. As the result of his work he acquired a good pictorial collection of ‘happenings’ in eastern Montana.

It is evident that happenings in Glendive, Montana, at the time Foster was in business and happenings of today do not constitute the same level of event. A search of photographs taken by L.A. Foster Photo Co. return flocks of sheep, more flocks of sheep, and sheep shearing. Very "happening" events.

The gift shop and photography business were run by Foster and his wife Jennie from their home, according to the 1910 and 1920 census. In the 1930 census Foster has listed "proprietor of gift shop" as his occupation and there is no mention of photography. In June and July of 1914, Foster copyrighted three of his photographs. The descriptions are so vague it is difficult to determine if this photograph or any of the photographs it contains are the ones copyrighted.

After researching the photographer of this post card we have a tentative time period of 1910 to 1930 for the post card.

Dating This Postcard Using The Back

Those manufacturers who produced photo postcard paper had very distinctive products. Information can be found by looking at the font, logo, stamp boxes, etc. By researching this information you can establish the earliest date know for the paper to have been produced.

The last date it was produced is trickier. It can often be ascertained if it is known when a company manufactured a new design. The paper has a two year life span, so the paper would have to have been used within two years of the production of a new design.

Here we have a post card with an undivided back. As in the discussion of Big Wheels, we learned these were produced after 1907.

We have an ornate typeset of the word Post Card, no stamp box, and "Correspondence" instead of "Correspondence Here." There is an exact match of this back in the book, Real Photo Postcard Guide.

The paper is Kruxo and was manufactured by the Kiborn Photo Paper Company of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The earliest know date this paper was used was August 2, 1913. The next design change appears to have occurred in 1923.

So using the back as a guide the post could have been produced from August 2, 1913 to 1925. (Using the life of the photo paper.) So we have narrowed the time span by eight years.

Dating This Postcard Using The Photograph

The buildings used in the photographs were constructed around 1882. The Congregational Church was sold to the Catholic Church in 1898 and a new Congregational Church was built, but the year is unknown. As most of the buildings seem to sit alone, they are probably taken around 1910 when Foster went into the photography business. He may have selected historical photographs for this post card, perhaps trying to portray old Glendive.

The photograph of the main street may give a small clue, as a request for improved electrical coverage was made in 1919. Other photographs of the street I found show more and larger electrical poles. More research needs to be conducted, but this could date our photograph from August 2, 1913 to 1919 or 1921.

The Glendive Library is known to have an interesting photograph collection and my next trip to this part of Montana will include a stop to view the collection.


Bogdan, Robert, Todd Weseloh. Real Photo Postcard Guide. Syracuse, New York : Syracuse University Press, 2006.

Brown, Mark H.
Plainsmen of the Yellowstone : A History of the Yellowstone Basin. Univ Of Nebraska Press, 1969.

Kauffman, Gladys Mullet. Stories of Eastern Montana's Pioneers. Helena, Mont. : Sweetgrass Books, 2006.

Library of Congress. Catalog of Entries. Washington, Govt. Print. Off., 1906-[47].


1910 U.S. census, Dawson County, Montana, population schedule, Glendive, p. 9B, dwelling 293, family 295, Lewis A. Foster (Head); digital images. ( : retrieved 16 June 2009); citing NARA microfilm publication T624, roll 2,076.

U.S. census, Dawson County, Montana, population schedule, Glendive, p. 3A, dwelling 51, family 64, Lewis A. Foster (Head); digital images. ( : retrieved 16 June 2009); citing NARA microfilm publication T625, roll 1,454.

U.S. census, Dawson County, Montana, population schedule, Glendive, p. 15A, dwelling 402 , family 354, Lewis A. Foster (Head); digital images. ( : retrieved 16 June 2009); citing NARA microfilm publication T626, roll 2,667.


Greetings From Glendive, Mont. Foster, Lewis A. Glendive, Montana. Photo Postcard. ca. 1913 - 1921. Privately held by the footnoteMaven, Preston, WA. 2009.


Weekend With Shades - Sunday - June 21

A Monthly - Weekend With Shades -

Taking photos during your vacation is a good way to capture memories. Creating scrapbook pages with those photos is an even greater way to preserve them. June is here and that means it's summer vacation time. Of course you know that you need to take your camera along with you on vacation. And if you've been following the articles in this column for the past few months you know you should remember to take some snapshots of memorabilia while you're off exploring new destinations (post cards, match books, menus, etc.). You'll be happy you did when it comes time to create a scrapbook page of your memories.

Past Articles
Elements of a Great Page
Holiday Ideas
Heritage Albums
Birthday's Remembered
Spring Is For Scrapbooking
In Honor Of My Mother


Saturday, June 20, 2009

Weekend With Shades - Saturday - June 20

A Monthly - Weekend With Shades - Column

Creating finding aids is a major part of my job, yet I always feel like they would take too many words to explain. Really, though, there is nothing complicated about a finding aid – at least in terms of what it is and what it is supposed to do. Currently, there are professional standards and best practices guidelines that define or prescribe what the structure and content of a finding aid should be, and this is what I think of when I think about finding aids. In getting bogged down in the details, I forget that finding aids are simply that: aids for finding stuff.

What finding aids do is tell you what is in a collection. Sometimes it might do this through item level lists, where each document is listed, but this takes a lot of time, which is why it is not the typical goal in these More Product, Less Process days. The original item level finding aid to the Oscar Wilde collection at my library was over 1000 pages – quite unwieldy to say the least. I’ve recently re-encoded and divided the original document into 5 smaller parts, hopefully making it a bit easier to navigate while still retaining all the hard work that librarians put into describing and typing out the information about every single item in the collection.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Carnival's In Town


Smile For The Camera
10 June 2009

Shades of the Departed requests your presence for the marriage of thirty-one posts of Wedding Belles in the 14th Edition of Smile For The Camera. From the antique photograph to the wedding photograph of today, they have all made their appearance to Smile For The Camera.

You have outdone yourselves presenting one of the most beautiful albums Shades has had the honor to display. Photographs of weddings, the wedding party, brides, grooms, receptions, and even one who never made it to the altar.

Let's open the cover of this edition of Smile For The Camera's album of Wedding Belles.

Yes, she collects photographs too! Maureen Taylor's collection of "Brides" is not to be missed. This is going to be a spectacular book! Maureen's posts can also be found at The Photo Detective.

In Weddings - Not Just About the Bride and Groom posted at Begin with 'Craft', Valerie C. gives us a lesson in the genealogical significance of the events, the photos and information associated with both.

Julie Cahill Tarr presents Orphan Photo #17 posted at Who Will Tell Their Story? This is the Wedding photo of Charlie and Carrie Gattreu (or Gottreu), circa 1898. Julie does the research and presents a photograph with one of those very interesting painted backgrounds.

Regina's first submission to Smile For The Camera is a beautiful montague of all the wedding photos from her genealogy collection in Generations of Love - Smile for the Camera 14th edition posted at Kinfolk News: Random Thoughts and Research Notes.

T.Casteel's Joined in Marriage posted at Tangled Trees is a beautiful wedding photograph. A very young attractive couple, these two look just the least bit nervous. It's also one of the most beautiful wedding bouquets in the Carnival. Be sure to enlarge the photograph.

Lori E presents CARNIVAL OF GENEALOGY: Smile For The Camera posted at Stories of my Ancestors. A photo of her Grandparents and a recent wedding led Lori to remark, "The differences between then and now are so staggering. 100 years and we can't even wrap our heads around the lives our ancestors led." It's so true.

Midge Frazel's Wedding Memories posted at Granite in My Blood is an absolutely gorgeous photograph. Midge says, "What could be more magical than a fairyland wedding at Disney World? See my beautiful daughter with her handsome prince in Cinderella's coach taken 2 July 2005."

Linda Hughes Hiser's photograph holds a very special connection to Linda. Smile for the Camera--Wedding Belles posted at Flipside is "Linda's first wedding!" This is a great photograph and a wonderful story.

Jennifer Trahan presents Pemberton Family Wedding Belles posted at Jennifer's Genealogy Blog. Pemberton Family Wedding Photos from 1949-2008, a veritable treasure chest of wedding belles and memories. You are so lucky, Jennifer.

Judith Richards Shubert of Genealogy Traces treats us to some beautiful scrapbook pages in Genealogy Traces: Smiles from the Attic. "A Wedding Congratulations Card Collection and photos of my sisters and me with our mother, Mildred on our Wedding Day combined in Scrapbook pages for a 'Smile from the Attic'."

Apple introduces us to her sister''s wedding in Apple's Tree: Wedding Belle in her article at Apple's Tree. "My sister threw our family's wedding traditions out the window and did it beautifully." Apple's photographs show us just how good change can be.

Shades is so glad to have Donna Pointkouski back at the carnival and feeling better. Donner doesn't fail to catch our attention with Another Zawodny Wedding at What's Past is Prologue. A gorgeous 1920's photograph you must see!

John Newmark presents Barney Newmark and Bertha Cruvant - August 27, 1911 posted at TransylvanianDutch. Two views of one wedding; this was a very proud groom. Check out the shine on his shoes. He must have worked for hours to get that shine.

Melody Lassalle submits a collection of photographs from the 1939 wedding of Wilma Larcher and Alfred Souza in Wedding Belles: Beyond the Ceremony posted at The Research Journal. Melody says, " It seems that in the 1930s they were doing things pretty much the same as we do today." Yes, just cuter cars.

Frances Ellsworth posts some memorable photographs in Our International Wedding at Branching Out Through The Years. "We always smiled at our traditional wedding surrounded by nontraditional attitudes. These varying religious beliefs did not stop a life long friendship. Our friends supported us from our marriage through the years to Ned's death."

Jessica Oswalt tells us that "as soon as I saw the picture, I fell in love with it." The photograph at Wedding Belles: A Beautiful Wedding Picture at Jessica's Genejournal speaks for itself.

Jean Duncan requests the honor of your presence at the unveiling of her photograph Wedding Belles: Myra Sampson Buzzell at Forget Me Knots: My Ancestors and My Ghosts. Her bonus is the wedding invitation.

Randy Seaver presents A June Wedding posted at Genea-Musings. "Things that happen in a second often take a lifetime to explain. So it is with weddings - the "I Do" leads to many events, joys, and sadness. And to a large extended family. Thank goodness for June weddings." Yes, thank goodness, Randy.

Leah Kleylein has collected a "so serious" Wedding Belles photograph at Random Notes. Leah tells us, "If you look closely, you see that she is reaching over with her right hand and holding on to a couple fingers from his left hand." Perhaps not as serious as first thought. I also enjoyed Leah's discussion of how she has decided on a category of photographs to collect. Very interesting!

Janet Iles has a photograph of a couple married in uniform in Wedding Belles - Smile for the Camera at Janet the researcher. She says, "my great aunt and uncle had an outdoor wedding." Stop by to check out the uniforms in these very interesting photographs.

Geniaus' photograph Smile for the Camera, 14th Edition Wedding Belles shows her husband's grandparents who were married in Sydney in 1913, but appear to have not had a marriage made in heaven. The groom's watch fob is very interesting and the photograph is beautiful. Another photograph you must be sure to enlarge to see all the detail.

Brett Payne tells us that, "Despite a diligent search I've been unable to come up with a single one of my ancestors that lived within the photographic era who was married during the month of June. I've decided, therefore, to instead feature a couple of portraits of a family member who was never married, although if she had, I have little doubt that she would have done so in June." Tante Gien is the beautiful unmarried woman in Smile for the Camera (14th Edition) - Wedding Belles at the Photo-Sleuth. Brett also directs you to some of his brilliant wedding mysteries solved. Every one is a great read.

Kay Bauman tells us, "Mina was a mail order bride and she and Leo married on April 22, 1930." This is not your usual wedding photograph, Keithley Wedding Belles, posted at Kay B's Place, but it is as interesting as the story Kay tells.

Is Jasia's photograph the victim of camera shy relatives? The photograph, A Family Wedding, posted at Creative Gene always causes Jasia to wonder. But check the photograph one more time, someone isn't camera shy at all!

Becky Wiseman gives us a twofer of Aunt Pat and Uncle Bob posted at kinexxions. Yes, Becky, they do look like glamorous movie stars. And they had something most movie star marriages don't, they were still married to each other fifty years later.

Terri Kallio presents Smile For the Camera - 14th Edition - Wedding Belles posted at The Ties That Bind. "One of my favorite photo restorations for my book Searching - The Habben/Ufkes Families was of Lena Habben and Julius Mietzner. I hope you will enjoy it also!" Terri, your work is beautiful.

Evelyn Theriault shares a very romantic photograph in the Wedding Belles submission at her blog, A Canadian Family. This is one photograph you must see!

Greta Koehl presents Smile for the Camera: Wedding Belles posted at Greta's Genealogy Bog. "There are very few wedding pictures among my photographs, so this edition of Smile for the Camera took some thought. There are two early 20th century wedding photographs and two "modern" (if you consider early 1980s to be modern) photographs of my own wedding at the home of the legendary Dr. Maiden."

Leslie Mehana of Rooting Around Genealogy tells us that sometimes you find a group picture where you know who is there but not who is who. We've all owned them, but Leslie was very fortunate to find a relative had typed a list of everyone in the photograph, Group Photos: Wedding Belles, and their position in the picture. We should all be so lucky.

Paula Hawk's photo, Wedding Belles, was taken just after the wedding of Frieda Margaret Newcomb and Lawrence Hubert Cullen on September 2, 1917 in Cheyenne, Laramie County, Wyoming. "I find it interesting that although everyone is dressed up, the bride is not in a 'traditional' wedding dress. Although I've always thought that the traditional wedding dress was an old tradition, I don't think I've ever seen an old photo with an exquisite white gown. I'm hoping that some of the others will have photos that will show that the beautiful white wedding gown is a long standing tradition!" Sorry Paula, many brides were married in dark blue traveling costumes just like yours. It was also a tradition.

foonoteMaven closes the album cover on this edition of Smile For The Camera with "A Beautiful June Bride," my Grandmother Lillian Salter Greene here at Shades Of The Departed. As always, my ancestors are here to Smile For The Camera.

Thank You All!

Thank you to everyone who participated in this fantastic 14th Edition of Smile For The Camera and welcome to all the first-time contributors. It is evident from each and every article that a great deal of time, effort, love, and research went into each photographic contribution. As Randy would say, please take a moment to stop and comment and show your appreciation!

Now The Call For Submissions!


Smile For The Camera
10 July 2009

The word prompt for the 15th Edition of Smile For The Camera is "they WORKED hard for the family." The professions of our ancestors are almost as interesting as the people themselves. Some of our ancestors worked very hard; they took in laundry, worked the land, raised many children, or went to school and became professionals. Photographs of them working are called occupational photographs and are rather hard to find. If you do have a photograph in your collection or family photographs, bring them to the Carnival. If not, post a photograph of one of your relatives or ancestors and tell us what they did for a living. Use your imagination, this one is tricky. Admission is free with every photograph!

Your submission may include as many or as few words as you feel are necessary to describe your treasured photograph. Those words may be in the form of an expressive comment, a quote, a journal entry, a poem (your own or a favorite), a scrapbook page, or a heartfelt article. The choice is yours!

Deadline for submission is midnight (PT)
10 July 2009

Posted - 16 June 2009


There are two options:

1. Send an email to the host, footnoteMaven. Include the title and permalink URL of the post you are submitting, your name, and the name of your blog. Put 'Smile For The Camera' clearly in the title of your email!

2. Use the handy submission form provided by Blog Carnival, or select the Bumper Sticker in the upper right hand corner.

See you at the Carnival!