Update about blog

Come on over to my other blog, Alchemy of Clay and Living in Black Mountain NC, where the scenery and my ceramic arts life are combined. I've moved some personal blog posts, (as well as those that are about my ancestors) back here.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Beauty is...

A family picture on someone's front steps.  The women have their pretty hair, their pretty frocks, their lipstick probably.

Does that make them beautiful?  I wonder...
I'm submitting this to Sepia Saturday this week.  There will probably be some other bloggers who are more successful at following the topic.

the men have sweaters, ties and my grandfather has a hat.  But the women don't have on hats.  And maybe one is holding a purse as if she's going somewhere.  But I don't think so.  I think they just came out in the cold just to take their picture to remember this event.  Maybe Christmas, maybe Thanksgiving.

The photo is cited in the album from the back row, from left to right is Chauncey, George (my father) unknown man (listed as Billy Seaman) and then in the hat, Poppy (George Rogers Sr.).
In the front on the left is my mother, then Zulie (Julie?) Winslow (Seaman) then "Aunt Jim" (a woman I don't know) then my grandmother Ada Rogers.

I am unable to find any interest in the prompt for Sepia Saturday this week...showing a woman getting her hair done and a manicure.  I haven't indulged in that kind of vanity much in my life.  Most of my hair exploits were done at home, and I've never had a manicure by someone else.  Not that I'm proud of that, just these are such frivolous ways for me to spend my time, energy or funds, that I just don't see the point.

There were some years when I used makeup daily on my face, changing with the current styles.  There were years I colored my hair, or curled it, and certainly would have it cut and styled occasionally in order to fit into a professional life.  But I became an artist in my 30's, and that was where my heart was...to make beauty that would be shared with other people.  So I, myself, wasn't the canvass that I chose to work upon.

Back to figuring out who is in the above picture.  My parents (before me obviously) and grandparents.  Chauncey is my father's brother.

The Zulie Winslow and Aunt Jim and Billie Seamans are related.  It looks as if Aunt Jim would be Zulie's daughter.  Why is she called Aunt Jim then?  And is she married to Billie Seamans?

My grandmother did have a sister, who was called Stella Winslow

Gummy in the middle
Here are at least 2 of the same women, with my grandmother being in the middle, and supposedly her sister on the right side of the photo.  That leaves the brunette on the left, who is beginning to look more and more like a daughter of Stella, or at least a generation younger than the floral clad sisters.

OK, I'm going to take a stab.  The Zulie in both of these pictures is Stella's daughter.  And the guy in the back is probably her brother Billie Winslow.  He was definitely in my father's generation.

Zulie Winslow did marry a man named Francis Seamans, and their son Billy was born in 1937.  He wouldn't have been a man standing in the back row of this photo...so whoever named his uncle his name messed up. It's unlikely that it's Zulie's husband, Francis Seamans, because he was born in 1897, and the man in the back looks young as my father at least (born in 1915).

So who is Aunt Jim, aka the unamed woman next to my grandmother?  She's of the adult children age, born around 1910-1918.

OK let's just look at the Winslow home in the 1940 census, since that's probably within 5 years of this photo.  My parents married in 1936 and that looks like the coat my mother wore to be married in.

Head of household is 51 y.o. Stella Winslow.
Next entry is her son, William Winslow, age 22.
Next comes Francis Seamans, 43 y.o. son-in-law.
Next comes Zulie Winslow Seamans, daughter of Stella, age 29.
And finally is William Seamans, age 7/12, the grandson.

I may not know who Aunt Jim is yet, but the relationship of Zulie and her husband is clarified.  He's close to her age, but certainly not the young man in the back row of the picture.  It's got to be her brother, William Swasey Winslow, who was born in 1917, and married in 1945.  His wife would be Jane Hughes, who might be the woman in the front row.

The most shocking thing for me in looking at this picture, is that Stella Winslow wasn't part of the group.  She wasn't ever someone I met, but she lived until 1960, the year my grandfather died, in the same city also.  All those years I went to parties and stayed over at my grandparent's house, I never met my grandmother's sister.  I would think she would have been more likely to be named Aunt Jim, but she wasn't in that group at all.

Mysteries of families abound!

SOLVED: My cousin answered my quest.  She remembers her father, my father's younger brother, calling Aunt Jim as Stella Winslow, my grandmother's sister.  So those photos that have some names underneath aren't always to be trusted!  And now I know I had a great Aunt Jim (really Stella Zulieka Winslow!)  Added 9:00 pm, July 13, 2014.


Wendy said...

"Aunt Jim" - I'd love to know the story behind that name.

B. Rogers, Living in Black Mountain said...

me too, I wish I knew.

Alan Burnett said...

Ah beauty may be only skin deep - but there is a kind of family history beauty that is as deep as the oldest census record.

anyjazz said...

Sometimes the research asks more questions than it answers! Happens to me too often! Fine post! I enjoyed it all the way.

Karen S. said...

You are so right and what great family photos to prove it too. Knowing more about Aunt Jim would be very interesting, do share once you know!

North County Film Club said...

I like your statement that your art was more important than your beauty. I think that's a good sentiment since beauty is only skin deep.
Ladies of the Grove

Alex Daw said...

Hmmm...interesting...Jim...Jemima? Maybe the aunt is not a real aunt but just a very good friend if you know what I mean.

Anonymous said...

In my husband's ancestors when sometimes there were aunts in a family who shared the same name another name was chosen to differentiate them - maybe Jim was her husband's name? so there was Aunty Annie Jack and so on.

Sharon said...

Zulie? Yes it could be Julie, but although I have never hear Zulie before, it has grown on me. I really like it. Unusual but nice.

B. Rogers, Living in Black Mountain said...

In the Swasey/Phillips family, Zulieka and Ada are names that reoccur in 2 generations. Thus my grandmother was Ada, and her sister Stella Zulieka. My grandmother's mother was Zulieka and her sister Ada. The daughter of Stella was a Zulieka also, which we all shortened to Zulie...though census takers weren't familiar with the name and wrote it Julie. Perhaps that's how she got Aunt Jim as her family nick name.

B. Rogers, Living in Black Mountain said...

Thanks to my cousin Pat, I've got the answer to who Aunt Jim was. I've added it to the bottom of my post (in yellow type). Whoopee!