I love antique photos. You can learn so much about how things have changed, and again how little has. We inherited 3 trunks of photos from the late 1800's to the 1940s and 50's. Most came from an enigmatic, extremely hard working but photo-loving woman named Lena, an ancestor of my husband, born in 1879. She had more contacts, more postcards (several hundreds) and more photos of herself taken than anyone who is not a well know celebrity. She seems to have collected antique photos from all around her. She unfortunately didn't identify many, only writing "Lena" on many given to her. I think she assumed she would remember, and of course after that it wouldn't matter!

We are still sorting through all the stuff trying to piece together Lena's fascinating and sometimes tragic life. Meanwhile, here are a variety of photos, including some of the highest (and lowest!) fashion.

I have also included the very old family photos I have from my mom's side of the family.

I hope you enjoy, and thank you for visiting my blog.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Saga of Lena Begins

Lena Ryder was born in 1879 in Lebanon, Missouri.
By the time this picture was taken she must have been about 3 or 4 years old.  (This is corrected version of the original tintype we inherited.) While this is the first picture we are sure is of Lena, it is by far the last.  Once she discovered the limelight of photography, she never looked back. We have well over 150 photos of her from a child to her death much later in life.

It's hard to see details of the doll she is holding, but it is obviously her special friend, which must have gone everywhere with her.

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