Oregon writer, Rain Trueax, and Oregon painter, Diane Widler Wenzel co-author Rainy Day Thought. Diane generally posts on Wednesdays and Rain on Saturdays. There may be extra days or changes as situations warrant. Comments are always welcome and appreciated as it turns an article into a discussion.

Monday, April 23, 2012

old family photos

When I did a recent blog on our culture, beauty and how media can impact photographs of families, I put in two more or less random ones of my own family. I decided I'd share a few more. There are no labels for most of them.

Old family photos came to me when a younger cousin died two years ago. Among them were a lot of black and white negatives which my aunt, the dark-haired woman in the center back of the first one, had kept. I took time to scan some of them, often not aware of what I'd find.

I saw photos of my father that I had never seen. When I began, I only knew one thing about them-- these are my people. They are from whom I came and impact still who I am today. I am the oldest left of my direct line on my dad's side.

This one I know my grandfather is the one at the top with the big cigar. He's smoking or holding one in most of the photos I have seen of him. My grandmother is down in front with a kind of coy look (my great grandmother to her right behind her). I wish I'd known that side of my grandmother, but I think when Granddad died, she lost that kind of joy. She had married him at 16.
This one is uncle, my father, grandfather, grandmother and two aunts and likely taken for some holiday as they all look dressed up, and our family was together for pretty near every holiday until Grandma died. Then it all went away as it was probably a bit of a matriarchy.

It was a big family. One side had come to America in the 1400s and the other in the 1800s. They moved across this nation and found places they could make a living, one branch ending up in Oregon. The family's numbers have now dwindled down. I am not much for thinking about the past but sometimes it's good and I can even get teary as I think about those beloved people, some I never knew except through these photos. I am glad they took the time to record their existence with images.


OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

I love old pictures, Rain...Everyone's old pictures, especially of 'family'.....it is precious to have these photo's, my dear....As you said---these are your people from whence you came....That alone makes them so valuable to one's heart and soul....!

Celia said...

Glad you got these Rain. I love looking into the faces of my family in old photos, some of them look happier than I ever remembered. I truly enjoyed seeing the faces of your people.

la peregrina said...

I love old family photos. Your grandmother's face jumped right out at me in the group photo. It's a good face. Is your dad in that one? I can't tell if he is or not.

Rain Trueax said...

I love them too whether they are my family or someone else's. He was in the big group photo if that's the one you meant and he's the tall one on the far left. He was not in the one on the tree stump. I got some photos of him from those negatives that gave me more of a view of the man he had been. He had a photo album of his own but it was a lot about his years with the carnival and the ones he knew then. Some rough characters, I might add. Dad was what can be called a carnie and every year he went with it, working whatever jobs he could between summers on the road. He met my mom in one of the big vaudeville theaters in downtown Portland when he was a stage hand and she was with the band and singing.

Taradharma said...

these are wonderful photos, Rain. It is amazing to look at the faces of our ancestors...it gets me wondering what it must have been like to be them, in their time, and with their experiences. Wow -- 1400! That's a long time back for your family. And yes, just think of all they lived through and endured...they were the successful ones, as evidenced by your being on the planet.

Hattie said...

My family goes way back in America too. Much has been lost.
Fascinating, the chances they took in life. Some were lucky and some weren't. Like you, I'm happy for whatever records they left of their lives.