Friday, January 27, 2012
Pictures from the Past
Earlier this week my nephew, Grant, texted me to ask some questions about our family’s history. I gladly complied, and probably gave him considerably more information than he needed or wanted. Later, as I was chatting with his mom, my sister, she mentioned that she often wondered about our family’s past, new I would have the information available, but hesitated to ask me for it because she didn’t want to bother me.
If only she knew! Like many other genealogists and family historians, I love the chance to talk about my subject. And if the subject is my family – I’ll go on forever! Ultimately what we decided was that I would write a blog every week (Family Fridays) about some person or aspect of our family history.
Naturally this conversation took place yesterday, so here I am – in need of a subject for this blog. Strangely enough, I spend all of my time and energies on writing my clients’ family histories, and haven’t written much about my own family. I have scads of information, but I have yet to take the time to coalesce it into a narrative. Guess that’s going on my to-do list.
For this week I thought I would introduce my sister and her children to a few of our family members for whom I have some sort of photographic evidence. Pictures are always nice, and that will show them some faces to go with names. Next week I’ll have an actual story.
On mom’s side we have Austin Cecil Tasker (the man on the right and Edith Mae Wise. Austin did not go by that name – he was either “A.C.”, “Cecil” or, oddly enough, “Tom”. Edith knew him as Cecil (and was upset when some strange men came to their house demanding to see Tom!)
Austin Cecil’s father was James Edgar Tasker. We have several photos of him, but none of his wife, Ida Miller Tasker (yes, her middle name was “Miller” and she, too was a Tasker before marrying a Tasker, distantly related). Why Tasker men pose in front of cars I'll never know.
James Edgar’s father was John Henry Tasker. I like this photo of John Henry with his long beard and watch chain.
Edith’s mother was Griselda Mae Paul (I love that there is a “Griselda” in our family!) While I don’t know where this fountain is located, I like how tall and strong she looks (Edith was small and thin) as well as her shy smile.
Griselda’s mother was Marian Willman. You can see where Griselda’s strength came from, can’t you? She looks elegant in this studio photograph, and I enjoy noting the details of her clothing – the pleated polished cotton shirt, the lace collar, the pin stripes on her skirt. And oddly enough, not a single piece of jewelry.
This is John Paul, Griselda’s father, looking dapper in his hat with a flower in his lapel. Since Marian doesn’t appear to be as dressed up as John, I wonder if he is heading out to some function or other for the day….
And here is the oldest family photo that I have seen on our mom’s side of the family. Meet William Pringle, Jr. of Huntington, PA. William was born in 1790, and luckily lived until 1874. I suspect this photo was taken in the last 10 years of his life. Unfortunately men’s clothing provides many fewer clues as to the possible age of the photo, so I find it much more difficult to “date” men’s pictures.
It looks like this is going to take more time than I realized. Mom’s side of the family is complete, but Dad’s side REALLY liked to have their photos taken, so I think I will save them for next week. But I do have one last photo to show today – it’s not of a person, but since Missy didn’t know we were related to anyone named “Fluck” I had to show her this one.
Johannes Adam Fluck (a “slopification” of his German family name “Pflug”) was born in Mainz, Germany around 1700. He married Anna Maria Dui in Germany, and they immigrated to Philadelphia in 1744. Their children had awesome names like Ludwig and Casper (sadly our direct ancestor was John Phillip). This gravestone is a great example of “handmade” headstones – crudely carved, but with the important information: his name, his year of death, and an angel.
So, until next week, when I show off some of the other side of our family, keep on finding and cataloging your own family photos. And Missy – if you have any photos that I don’t have, you should scan them and send them to me!