Picture Taken Under Apple Tree

19-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Sunday, October 11, 1914:  Went to Sunday school this morning. Carrie was over this afternoon, and we had our pictures taken under an apple tree and sitting on the pasture bare.

Source: Wikimedia Commons
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

It must have been a lovely October day if Grandma and her friend Carrie Stout decided to have someone (her sister Ruth?) take their picture.

I’m a little confused by the phrase “sitting on the pasture bare.” The modern literal interpretation of the phrase makes no sense within the context of the times. Is the pasture bare. . . of grass? . . . of cows? . . . of fallen apples?

21 thoughts on “Picture Taken Under Apple Tree

  1. As I so often do, I agree with Gallivanta’s comment – I think Grandma just meant they were sitting on the grass. Don’t we wish we had that picture???

  2. When I was a kid, whether I was playing with friends or on a picnic, the admonition always was that we shouldn’t sit on “the bare ground.” We’d spread a blanket or quilt. I suspect the meaning’s about the same.

  3. I agree with so many of the previous comments: sitting on the bare ground; where is that picture?, and finally, I too am glad she is writing again 🙂

  4. oh I raced to see if you had a photo of the very apple trees she sat under. The pasture would be fairly bare in October as animals would have it grazed almost bare as temperatures dropped and growth slowed down. Also I believe it was common to allow pigs to graze in orchards and they certainly would have bared the ground. Here where I live in the southwest of Ireland the family cow was kept in the same orchard attached to the smallest of houses. I just love this blog!

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