Vintage Thingies Thursday


This post is republished from last winter. I thought it would make an excellent addition to Vintage Thingies Thursday.

stub and hazelThis is probably my favorite photograph ever. It was taken in a photo booth in a train station one night around midnight, in 1945. In a world where the second great war in a generation had just ended and prosperity was beginning, the woman in the picture was 35 and just married. She's my grandmother, and in a few weeks she will be 98.

In my memory, she has always been old, but looking at her now, I can still clearly see the woman in this picture. Both her beauty and her will, her iron spine. I can see, in both the old woman I know and this young woman, how she came to make it almost all the way through college before the measles took her eye sight, how she grew up working the land, how she cooked in logging camps. How she raised three children to be fantastic people. How, a decade or so after this picture was taken, she moved her young family across several states, away from where they lived near a nuclear testing facility, because she didn't think it right to bring up children somewhere nothing would grow.

The man in the picture, her husband, died before I was born, but lives on in legend as a bare-knuckle boxer during the Depression and a teller of world-famous bullshit stories. I think I would have liked to know him.


Oh my goodness. I am just in awe of that picture. I can just imagine their characters; of course, you did a most excellent job "introducing" them.
When we only know someone as "old", it's quite interesting to look back at pictures and see the life they lived, what kind of men and women they were, what they're made of.
I just adore this post and those pictures! Thanks so much for sharing that.

That photo is gorgeous and compelling. Reminds me that I have some awesome old photos of my grandmother I should scan someday.

What a wonderful post. I'm glad you reposted it. This indeed was the greatest generation.

You are a fantastic story teller! I love how one small picture can evoke so much love. I admit I want to know more, especially about your bare-knuckle boxer and world famous bullshitter grandfather! (what a great description...sounds like my great-grandfather - I've been told he was a world-famous bullshitter too.) ;)

That photo is absolutely captivating. Makes me want to drag out my mother's old albums.

What a wonderful photo and a great story. Makes you wish you could jump in the photo, back to the time and have a look around. Loved this post.

That is an amazing and very compelling photo. What a beautiful post. Thanks so much for sharing it.

THat's a beautiful photo!

What a great photo & what an amazing woman your grandmother was...I loved reading all about her :)

This is a remarkable photograph. I stumbled upon this (2 yrs after you posted it) -- and am quite taken by this couple. There seems to be a story there. They seem so real. I bet they really loved one another.

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