Welcome!

I reunite identified family photos that I find in antique shops and second hand stores with genealogists and family historians. If you see one of your ancestors here and would like to obtain the original, feel free to contact me at familyphotoreunion [ at ] yahoo [ dot ] com. I also accept donations of pre-1927 images to be reunited. I hope you enjoy your visit!
~The Archivist


Monday, April 15, 2019

Antoine Bazinet, Furrier/Photographer and John Brown, Hatter, Montreal, 1860s




Marilyn, a writer friend of mine from Ontario, sent me this occupational photograph of a group of men clearly involved in the hat trade to see if I could learn anything more about it. I retrieved my magnifying glass and had a close-up look at the hat boxes in the photograph. I was able to read most of the details typed on the label of the hat box visible at the bottom left of the photo:

JOHN BROWN 

[next line unreadable] 
HATS, CAPS, FURS, [-?] 
MONTREAL

There are two names under the photograph on the cardstock, which I believe relate to the photographer: James Brown [from] A. Bazinet & Co. The image itself appears to be a group of hatters/furriers from the John Brown Hat Company.


The Bibliothèque Et Archives Nationales Du Quèbec (BANQ) has placed digitized Montreal city directories online which show Antoine Bazinet was a furrier and hatter in Montreal from 1843 to about 1864. He may have been in business earlier, but the directories begin in 1843. In 1865 Bazinet is listed as a “photographic artist” and stays in this profession until 1870 when he appears to work as a toll collector.1  The Dictionaire des Artistes de Langue Francaise en Amerique du Nord by David Karel pinpoints Bazinet’s photographic years between 1863 and 1870. His studio was located on the corner of Rue St. Vincent & Notre Dame.

from the Montreal Directory, 1843-44

John Brown, a native of Greenock, Scotland, first appears in the Lovell Montreal Directories in 1843.2  His business could be found on Nazareth near Wellington Street in 1843 and by the 1850s was located at 229 St. Paul Street. I wouldn't be a bit surprised to learn that Antoine Bazinet & John Brown shared a prior working history. James Brown, the photographer who worked for Bazinet, may have been related to John Brown. John Brown did have a son named James, born around 1846 but I could not isolate our James in the directories or the available censuses.3

It looks as if John Brown's hat business was booming with the number of staff shown in the photograph. In 1861 John lived in a 1-storey stone house with his wife, Elizabeth & their ten children. He employed a seamstress, coachman, chambermaid, and cook. There were also three additional residents, all clerks, who may have been employed by Brown. The businessman also owned a horse, a cow, two carriages, and had $24,000 invested in his real and personal estate.This image likely dates to the late 1860s. John Brown passed away in Montreal, on the 10 November 1874, aged 59 years. 




1 Robert W. S. MacKay, compiler, The Montreal Directory [varying subtitles]. Montreal: Lovell, 1843-1871. Images, The Bibliothèque Et Archives Nationales Du Quèbec (BANQ) (http://bibnum2.banq.qc.ca/bna/lovell/index.html), accessed 30 Mar 2019.
2 Quebec, Vital and Church Records (Drouin Collection), 1621-1967, death & burial record for John Brown, St. Matthews Presbyterian Church, Point St. Charles, Montreal, Quebec, 10 Nov 1874, digital image, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 15 Mar 2019); citing original data: Gabriel Drouin, comp. Drouin Collection. Montreal, Quebec, Canada: Institut Généalogique Drouin.
3 "Québec, recensement, 1861," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MM7D-PD8 : 9 March 2018), John Brown, Montréal (St-Laurent), Montréal, Quebec, Canada; citing line number 1, p. 26; Library and Archives Canada film number C-1241, Archives Publiques, Ottawa (Board of Registration and Statistics. Public Archives, Ottawa); FHL microfilm 517,327.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

The Mystery Manor No Longer a Mystery: Poltalloch Mansion, Kilmartin, Scotland




Back in 2013, my husband gifted me a carte de visite album with an image of the above manor house pasted on the inside cover. There were 64 carte de visite photographs inserted in the album, and one loose photograph placed inside the pages. Only three photographs were identified.

I invite you to read about the acquisition in my original blog post, Mystery Manor House Carte de Visite Album.

In 2013 I speculated the Manor House might have been located in Northumberland. I learned recently that it is actually located in Scotland! Trish, a skilled researcher on the British genealogy forum Rootschat.com, identified the mansion for me. She and other Rootschat members posted links to current images. Poltalloch Mansion was built in 1849, near Kilmartin, Argyll & Dumbartonshire, Scotland about six miles north-west of Lochgilphead. The two-storey Jacobean mansion was built by Neil Malcolm the 13th Laird of Poltalloch, at a cost of £100,0001. It is now a ruin. Below are some links to recent images of Poltalloch Mansion:

https://canmore.org.uk/collection/558813

https://canmore.org.uk/site/39528/poltalloch-house-and-gardens?display=image&per_page=41

https://www.thecastlesofscotland.co.uk/the-best-castles/other-articles/poltalloch/

Since 2013, 9 of the 65 photographs in the album have been identified:

1) Napoleon, Prince Imperial (son of Napoleon III), 1871, photographed by W & D Downey.
2) Charles Bennet (Lord Ossulston), son of the Earl and Countess of Tankerville, 1860, photographed by Camille Silvey.
3) Charles Bennet, the 6th Earl of Tankerville, ca. 1866, photographed by O.G. Rejlander. Lord Tankerville died at Chillingham Castle in 1899. If you remember from my original post, this album was "made from wood grown in Chillingham Park."
4) Olivia Montagu - Countess of Tankerville, 1866, photographed by O.G. Rejlander.
5) Arthur James William Cecil (previously identified, see original blog post).
6) Reginald Edward Cecil (sibling of Arthur James William Cecil), ca. 1878.
7) Miss Austin. Photographer: Elliott and Fry (previously identified as "Miss Austin", but the exact identity of young girl unknown as of yet).
8) Queen Alexandra (Alexandra of Denmark), wife of Edward VII, 1862, photographed by Mayall (image below).
9) Royal Group photo, 1869 (previously identified, information in original post).

Queen Alexandra, 1862, photographed by Mayall

A few of the other images are tentatively named, but I'm not quite satisfied that I've identified them without a doubt, so I will continue to look for other images to confirm those portraits. In future posts, I will feature the above-mentioned images with detailed descriptions about how the photographs were identified.

I do not doubt that Poltalloch Mansion was a significant location for the original compiler of this cdv album. Now that the mansion has been identified, I plan to work on finding the connection between the place and the owner of the album. Research into Poltalloch Castle may help identify other images in the album.


1 https://www.scotsman.com/news/decaying-highland-estate-of-former-slave-trader-captured-by-photographer-1-4618660

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

The Horn Album, Umatilla County, Oregon: A Genealogist's Dream


I purchased this family photograph album at the Seattle Antiquarian Bookshow last week, along with way too many books. The album contains three carte de visite photographs and nine tintypes, all identified, but undated. The album is inscribed “My Father’s album presented to Mr. & Mrs. William K. Backstrom [?] by Miss Lenora V. Horn.” Most of the people in the album have early connections to Umatilla County, Oregon. Only one of the photos displays a photographer’s imprint, and unfortunately, the information I found on the photographer was minimal, and didn't help to narrow down the date of the photo any further than I had already estimated. Most of the photographs seem to be taken in the 1870s or early 1880s.

Inside album - Left: inscription, Right: Charley Powers
Inscription - inside front cover
Inscription - inside back cover 
Subjects featured in this album are:

1) Charley Powers – cdv photograph
2) George Horn – tintype photograph
3) Calvin Wallace – cdv
4) Miss Ada Walton – tintype
5) Will Looney – tintype
6) Annie Sappingfield -cdv circa
7) William Sappingfield – tintype (tinted)
8) John W. Horn & Arthur Noble - tintype
9) George Horn & John W. Horn - tintype
10) George Horn & Abrigail [Abigail] Horn – tintype
11) Angeline Doty now Angeline Minich – tintype (tinted), taken at the F.A. Smith Studio in Salem.
12) Misas [Misses] Ingram – tintype (tinted)

John William Horn (b. 1858) and George Washington Horn (b. 1857-1931) were brothers, both born in Oregon to Adam Wise Horn and Elizabeth McClure Looney (b. abt 1840)1,2. John W. seems to be the original owner of the album and his daughter, Lenora V. Horn inscribed the above mentioned notation. Susan Anna Ritchey was John’s second wife and Lenora’s mother.3,5 John’s brother, George, married Abigail Simmons4.

An obituary in the Portland Morning Oregonian provides a great deal of genealogical information about William Sappingfield (b.1830) and his origins6. It also provides a photograph to compare with the identified photograph in the album, and I am certain he is our man. In 1866, William Sappingfield married sixteen-year-old Frances W. Looney in Marion, Oregon7. As for the “Annie Sappingfield” in the album, I haven’t been able to find a possible match for her. I have an inkling it might be Frances, because the photo inscription was written overtop an erasure, and it looks like the given (erased) name began with an F. It could be a case of misidentification.

Elizabeth Looney (b. abt 1840) and Frances W. Looney (b. abt 1850) were both daughters of William Looney (b. abt 1818) and Elmira McClure.8,9 Their father, William, drowned on 15 Aug 1850 at age 33, as he tried to cross the Santiam River, near Hale’s Ferry.10,11 His widow, Elmira, married Nelson Ransome Doty about a year later12. Angeline Doty was born to Nelson and Elmira in 185713. Angeline married Jacob P. Minch in 1882. The William Looney featured in the album is a bit of a puzzle. The image can’t be William Looney, father to Elizabeth and Frances, because it likely dates to the 1870s.

I believe the Charley Powers in the album is Charles E. Powers (b. 10 Sept 1853) who married Emma Wallace in 187614. Emma’s brother was James Calvin Wallace (b. abt 1856), and he is also featured in this album15.

Arthur Noble, who posed with John Horn in image #8, is probably Arthur B. Noble, (b. 1855) husband of Alta Horn, sister of George and John W. Horn.16

I’m unsure how Miss Ada Walton is connected to John William Horn. I did find information on Ancestry databases pertaining to an Ada Ossie Walton (b. abt 1867), daughter of Lane County Judge, Joshua Jones Walton and his wife, Rebecca Gale. Ada was a school teacher in Oregon from 1882-1902, and later worked in Seattle as a stenographer/bookkeeper.17

If you can elaborate on any of these people, I hope you’ll leave a comment below.

Left: Annie Sappingfield  Right: William Sappingfield




1 "United States Census, 1860", database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MDQJ-V4B : 13 December 2017), Jno W Horn in entry for A Horn, 1860.
2 "United States Census, 1870," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MF8B-MYH : 12 April 2016), John Horn in household of A W Horn, Oregon, United States; citing p. 1, family 1, NARA microfilm publication M593 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 552,785.
3 "United States Census, 1930," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XCSD-J9S : accessed 18 October 2018), John W Horn, Pendleton, Umatilla, Oregon, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 55, sheet 16B, line 54, family 160, NARA microfilm publication T626 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2002), roll 1956; FHL microfilm 2,341,690
4 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for George Washington Horn, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?recordNumber= 66615)
5 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for John William Horn, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?ancRecordNumber= 66617)
6 “Man Who Crosses Plains to Oregon in 1847 Dies in Goldendale,” The Morning Oregonian, Portland, Oregon, 3 August 1911, p. 6. Image provided by University of Oregon Libraries; Eugene, OR (http://www.oregonnews.uoregon.edu).
7 Ancestry.com. Marion County, Oregon, Marriage Records, 1849-1900 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012; entry for William Sappingfield; citing Custer, Jeanne, and Daraleen Wade, compilers. The Marriage Records of Marion County, Oregon, Volume 1, 1849–1871. Salem, Oregon: Willamette Valley Genealogical Society, 1979.
8 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for Elizabeth McClure Looney, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?recordNumber=27602
9 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for Frances William Looney, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?recordNumber= 71668 (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?recordNumber=27602
10 “Casualties [death of William Looney],” Oregon Spectator, Oregon City, Oregon, 5 September 1850., p. 2. Image provided by University of Oregon Libraries; Eugene, OR (http://www.oregonnews.uoregon.edu
11 Ancestry.com. Willamette Valley, Oregon, Death Records, 1838-2006 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012, entry for William Looney, citing Death, Burial, and Obituary Collection. Salem, Oregon: Willamette Valley Genealogical Society, accessed 18 Oct 2018.
12 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for Elmira McClure, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?recordNumber=29990)
13 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for Angeline Doty, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?ancRecordNumber=19995)
14 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for Charles E. Powers, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?ancRecordNumber= 60838
15 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for James Calvin Wallace, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?ancRecordNumber= 25198)
16 Ancestry.com. Oregon, Early Oregonians Index, 1800-1860 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2014, entry for Arthur B. Noble, citing Early Oregonians Database Index. Oregon State Archives, Salem, Oregon. (https://secure.sos.state.or.us/prs/profile.do?ancRecordNumber= 14186)
17 General Register of the Officers and Alumni 1873-1907. Eugene, Or.: The University, 1908. Print.

Monday, August 27, 2018

The Irascible Mr. Pip and His Human Family, Cheltenham, England, 1900s?



I don't normally feature unidentified family portraits here on the blog, but I just couldn't resist this one. Even though the nameless humans in the image are pretty much overshadowed in every way by the huge personality of the four-legged character sitting atop the wooden table, I felt there still might be an interesting story to dig up from the clues in this portrait.

He may not really be irascible and "Mr. Pip" is probably not his real name, but I felt "dog" just wasn't a colourful enough moniker, so "Mr. Pip" he will be. I suspect he didn't think too highly of the photographer. The firm hold his owners have on him might indicate that Mr. Pip has already tried to launch off of the table to let the photographer know what he thinks of this posing business and his infernal photographic equipment.

W. C. Fields famously advised, "Never work with animals or children," but it seems J.  Holloway worked with both during his years as a photographer, judging from the advertisement he placed in the Glouchester News on 28 May 1887, where he states that "animals and children [are] a specialty." The website Sussex Photo History has already researched the work of Jesse Holloway quite thoroughly and if you would like to know more about his family and photographic studio, you will benefit from visiting their site by clicking on the link above.

But now we're left with two major mysteries:

1) Who are the individuals in the photograph?
2) Who actually photographed this image?

Even though the photographer's imprint says "J. Holloway, Cheltenham," I don't know for sure that Jesse Holloway was actually the photographer. According to Sussex Photo History, Jesse Holloway died in 1896, and his wife, Caroline Holloway took over the business. Then, in 1902, the Holloways' daughter, Edith, became proprietor of the studio. But, according to the 1901 England Census for Cheltenham, every member of the Holloway household was a worker in the family photography business: Caroline (the mother), Annie, Elizabeth, Kate, Wilfred, and Bertha1.

I think it's a good possibility that Mrs. Holloway and her family continued to use the J. Holloway imprint after his death. I could not locate a single Holloway Studio photograph that carried any name other than "J. Holloway" after 1896. That doesn't mean they don't exist, just that I haven't found them. I also noticed that Caroline Holloway continued to use Jesse's name in the Gloucester county directories after his death, as she did in the 1902 entry2:

Holloway Jesse (Mrs.), photographer, 32 Cambray

If I were to date the image, based on clothing, hairstyle and photograph format, I would make a liberal guess it was taken around 1900-1912, leaning towards 1904-05, but I'm certainly not committed to that. Dating this one is tricky. Just when I think I have a date narrowed down, I notice some other aspect of dress or fashion that suggests an earlier or later dating. We can't see the women's skirts or the cut of the man's suit and there is very little in the way of jewellery or fashion accessories to consider. The women's hairstyles seem to be in line with the late Victorian "frizzy" period. Another indication of date is the man's high imperial collar, which was popular in the 1890s to about 1905. One of the women is wearing a fob-watch pinned to her blouse, which was popular in the Edwardian period, but fell out of favour by the end of the World War I.

Mystery #1 seems to be unsolvable at the moment, so onto Mystery #2.

How would you date this image and who, exactly, is Mr. Pip staring down?



1 “1901 England Census,” database, Ancestry.ca (http://www.ancestry.ca : accessed 16 Aug 2018), entry for Caroline Holloway (age 59), citing PRO RG13; Piece: 2464; Folio: 88; Page: 12; Cheltenham registration district, Cheltenham subdistrict, ED 37, schedule line number 38, GSU roll: 1341277.
2 "U.K, City and County Directories, 1766-1946", indexed database and digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 10 Aug 2018), page 93, Jesse Holloway (Mrs.) entry; citing "Kelly’s Directory of the County of Gloucester, 1902 (London, Ill.:n.p., 1902)."