...the stories behind some of the old photos that have made their way into my collection. Here's one of my favorites:
Standing (left to right) are my great-aunt Ruth, her mother (my great-grandmother), Dora; and my grandfather, Lewis. Seated on the running board are my grandmother, Lola, next to her sister-in-law (my great-aunt), Hazel. My great-grandfather, Joe, sits on the ground and holds Ruth's older son, Bill, in his lap. The trees are bare, and everyone except my grandmother is wearing warm clothing, so my first thought was that the family may have gathered for Thanksgiving.
But then there's this photo, which appears to have been taken on the same day. It shows Lola and Ruth pulling Bill, my mother, Wanda, and my Uncle Neale in the wagon. Little Bill was born October 9, 1924. His brother, Bob, who doesn't appear in these photos, was born two years later on November 6, 1926. It's possible that Baby Bob was asleep in the house, but I can't imagine they'd have taken family photos without including the newest child. Also, Aunt Ruth's dress looks to me like it might be a maternity dress, even though the dark color camouflages any hint of a baby bump.
In the absence of Baby Bob, I'm deducing the photos were taken in 1926, but earlier in the year than Thanksgiving. Uncle Loren (who probably took these photos) and Aunt Hazel married in July of 1926 and hadn't moved away from Missouri yet, or I'd think their visit was the reason for the get-together.
If the family gathered just for the heck of it, I don't think they'd be all dressed up and taking pictures of the occasion. It wasn't easy to get my grandfather into a suit.
I'm left with only one idea: Little Bill's second birthday. October might have been early enough in the year that my grandmother thought she could get by with short sleeves. I'm not sure about the trees being so bare in October, but I remember trick-or-treating in the snow once, so I suppose it's possible.
Can you see any clues I'm missing?