17-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today:
Wednesday, May 15, 1912: Besse was out this afternoon. We had sort of a sewing bee. Ma worked on my dress and Sis brought several along.
Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:
Yeah! I finally know what Besse looked like. I recently found a picture of all four Muffly children. I think that it was taken about the same time as the diary. In 1912 Jimmie was 6-years-old, and I think that the boy in the photo looks about six.
This is the first picture that I’ve seen of Grandma’s oldest sister Besse. It’s fun to finally be able to picture what she looked like.
It’s also fun to see what the path toward the barn (or maybe some other farm building) looked like–and how the siblings arranged themselves for a group photo. It’s interesting how Jimmie is clinging to Besse, who was married and not living at home. She must have made a fuss over Jimmie when she visited. In April 1912 Besse had a baby who died shortly after birth. Maybe she transferred some of her maternal feelings to her little brother.
It’s also interesting how Ruth is standing a little separate from the others and has her hand on her hips. It reminds me of the times in the diary when Grandma refers to Ruth as “her highness.”
An aside–My brother helped me locate a small group of pictures (including this one), some old newspaper clippings, and related items that had been found in Grandma’s house after she died.
I’ve really been enjoying the newly found items, and look forward to sharing some more of the pictures and clippings over the next few weeks.