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dee_burris: (Default)
Friday, September 2nd, 2011 01:24 pm
This was the M R Craig Meat Market, before the devastating fire of 16 Jan 1906, that destroyed many businesses in downtown Russellville, AR.

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This is a Sepia Saturday post. Head over there for more historic photos.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, August 20th, 2011 12:30 pm
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George Washington Burris, Sr., feeding the turkeys...I'm just going to guess that this may have been taken in the early to mid 1920s. If that's the case, then they had turkeys in town (Russellville), which would not be out of the question.

George Washington Burris, Sr. died in 1929.




This is a Sepia Saurday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, August 13th, 2011 10:19 am
This is one of the photos I got in the lot of cabinet cards I bought on eBay last month.

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Although I do not know the identities of the photo's subjects, the photographer, Max Pomerantz, had his first studio at 500 South Street, in the old Jewish quarter of Philadelphia. By 1907, he had moved two blocks away to a larger studio at 700 5th Street, still in the Jewish quarter. (Source: The Jewish quarter of Philadelphia: a history and guide, 1881-1930, by Harry Davidow Boonin, at page 137, snippets digitized at Google Books.)



This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Friday, August 5th, 2011 07:38 pm
Twenty years ago (or maybe a tad more), before I started tracking my ancestors in any serious way, I got a phone call from my second cousin.

He was one of my Balding cousins, the only son of one of my grandmother's brothers.

His father died in 1980, and his mom couldn't live by herself any more. Larry was packing up her house to move her to Tulsa where he lived and could keep an eye on her.

The call was to let me know he had finished the packing and there were some leftovers in the house - bits of furniture and memorabilia, and he wondered if my sisters and I might want some of it.

I said sure, and we made a date for the next afternoon. I called my sisters to let them know.
I can't even remember now if my sisters accompanied me.

But I will never forget what I saw when I pulled into my aunt's driveway.

This portrait, leaning against the garbage cans on the curb.

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Fred Chapin, 1858-1938


I grabbed it up as I went in the carport door. I gave it to Larry when I went in.

He looked at me. I told him I found it out by the trash. That's Grampa Chapin.

What he said just floored me.

Dee, that frame isn't worth anything. That's why it's out with the trash.

I may not know much about the monetary value of old portrait frames, but there's one thing I did know.

At that time, that portrait was 100 years old.

So...no Larry, we're not putting Grampa out with the trash.
Grampa Fred Chapin's portrait has hung in whatever humble abode I have occupied ever since then.

I had a very interesting text conversation with my nephew today.

It's his 24th birthday and I texted him to wish him a happy one. We kidded back and forth about where his envelope full of cash was, and I told him I'd remember him in my will.

What he said just floored me.

When I die, he wants this portrait of his great-grandmother, Doris Geneva Balding, Fred Chapin's granddaughter.

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Doris Geneva Balding Williams, 1907-1998


I think Grampa may have a new home...



This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Friday, July 15th, 2011 09:07 pm
The plantation was located in Pulaski County, AR.


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Picture postcard from the Library of Congress





This is a Sepia Saturday post. Visit the website for more interesting old photos.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, May 21st, 2011 09:37 am
I love this photo.

It's my dad with his grand Uncle Jeff and grand Aunt Margaret.



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William Jefferson "Jeff" Burris, my dad, Margaret Jane Burris Moore



I figure that photo was taken when Dad was about 4, so it was probably very shortly before Uncle Jeff died in January 1941.

Margaret lived until 1944.

George and Louise Burris must have made a trip from Arkadelphia back to Russellville with my aunts and my dad.

Like my grandparents, we had generational Burris photos in our scrapbooks for many years, too. Photos of me and my sisters at our grand Aunt Emma's house when our family camped not far from the original James Littleton and Adeline Burris homestead in Pope County.

A lot of those photos were lost in a 100 year flood in December 1982, when a freak tornado ripped through Arkansas and dumped a deluge of water across my ancestral homeplace.


We camped on the homestead over 100 years after James and Adeline must have camped on the homestead while they were building their home.

As a kid, I couldn't appreciate that full circle of family history. I enjoyed fishing off the spillway for perch that Dad used to bait his yo-yos and trotlines, and I loved digging for worms beside Aunt Emma's chicken coop. Dad took me through fields that our ancestors had cleared long ago for planting and I was enthralled by the low stacked stone walls they built as they removed the rocks and loosened the soil for planting.


A new cousin found me this week. We aren't sure yet exactly how close our kinship is, but as we compare notes and sources from our family trees, she is prompting memories.

Thank you, Shirley. I need to remember, and pass it on.


The journey is good.

This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, April 16th, 2011 01:16 pm
Being unwilling to continue to tear my hair out to at least date these unlabeled photos, I was very intrigued by this post in Katherine's blog, Atlantic Roots.

So I ordered my very own copy of Dressed for the Photographer: Ordinary Americans and Fashion, 1840-1900, by Joan Severa.

It arrived yesterday.

So you know how I spent my Friday night.


I think I have much closer dates for two photos, after studying the photos in the book, as well as the excellent narrative Severa gives about other fashion clues, such as hairstyles.

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This is my great-grandmother, Maxie Leah (Meek) Williams. I'm going to date this photo about 1886 (she married on 11 Feb 1886) due to the rounded bodice of the dress, as well as the collar, and the hint of the bustle on the back of the dress.

Many bodices of this period had tight sleeves cut short on the forearm and featuring cuffs or half-cuffs. (Source: Dressed for the Photographer, at page 378.)

Severa goes on to say, In eighties photographs all bodices appear corset-fitted, many with very high standing collars. Similarly, sleeves are set very high, with the armscye cut somewhat in from the point of the shoulder in back, and are extremely tight... (Id., at page 379.)

There are also dating clues in the way she wore her hair. ...In the matter of coifure, the hair will be worn a good deal lower on the neck than it has been for some two seasons past...The style of dressing the front hair remains unchanged [in curled bangs]. (Id., at page 385.)


The puff sleeves on the dress and much shorter and tightly curled bangs make me think this photo was taken in the very late 1890's, and that theory is supported by the listing of the photographer, Jno H Ganner of Russellville, in the 1900 Arkansas Business Directory.

I believe this is still Maxie Leah, but do not have a clue as to the identity of her younger companion.

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This book is making a formerly dreaded chore much more fun.

This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Friday, April 8th, 2011 10:44 pm
This is a photo of my step-grandparents, Paul Pettit, and Audria Maxine Brannon, probably around the time of their marriage in 1937.

I saw it when I was up visiting the folks last weekend, and they let me scan a copy with my little Flip-Pal.

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Paul died in 1964, and Audria, in 2007. Both are buried in St. Joe Cemetery, just down the road from the Burris homeplace, in Pope County, AR.

This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Friday, April 1st, 2011 08:55 pm
I think my great grandparents, Jo Desha Williams and Maxie Leah Meek, were very proud and very happy with their home in Russellville, AR. They took quite a few photos of it.

The home was on East Main Street, although I do not have a house number.

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Thanksgiving Day, 1899


Later, they added to it.
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And again.

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Unfortunately, through a combination of being underinsured after the 1906 Russellville fire, and extending credit to too many folks, after nearly 30 years in business, the Williams Grocer Co. folded.

By 1920, the Williams family sold their beloved home, and moved to Little Rock.


This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, March 26th, 2011 09:52 am
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More unnamed and undated photos from the Williams family photo album.


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This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, March 19th, 2011 09:18 pm
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Jo Desha Williams, with his sons Cedric and Paul, Thanksgiving 1899








This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, March 12th, 2011 03:08 pm
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Jo Desha and Maxie Leah Williams family, Christmas Day 1900
photo by McLeod, the Wild West photographer


Every time I see this one, I just dissolve into gales of laughter.

Can't you just imagine the dinner table discussion a couple of weeks before the holiday?

"Honey, what shall we do this year for Christmas? After all, it's the first Christmas of the new century."

Oh, I don't know. . .hey, why don't we get that McLeod guy to take a picture? We could dress up and go sit outside on some rocks."

"Marvelous idea, darling! And we could put Paul and Cedric on a couple of asses. They've been acting like asses for a few days now. It would serve them right. . ."


The back of the photo has an extensive ad for "McLeod, the Wild West Photographer. . . the man who made Happy Hollow famous the world over."


This is a Sepia Saturday post.
dee_burris: (Default)
Saturday, February 26th, 2011 10:14 am
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The photo had to be taken in the late 1920s, but before 1929, when my grandmother, Louise Herrington, married George W Burris, Jr.

We do not have a clue as to the identity of her beau.





Sepia Saturday is a blogging medium and theme suggested by Alan Burnett and Kat Mortensen.