Sunday, November 28, 2010

Photo Number 384

G3 - Copy

This is another mysterious photo that Joan shared with me.  It was amongst her families old photos but it was not marked with names.  So it remains an unknown. 

What do you think the branches symbolize if anything? I have one idea..but it might be far fetched.  These are very large compound leaves with an opposite arrangement on the stem.  This makes it highly probably that they are some kind of Ash leaves..or at least some kind of leaf in the Oleacea Family..perhaps they are Olive leaves or branches ( which grow in California)?

Maybe this photo was taken in California..maybe it wasn’t.  Perhaps the branches are just branches and they don’t have anything to do with peace and contentment.

My thought is this:  Two brothers had a feud.  They both went to California where met up and buried the hatchet, struck gold while working a claim together and had this photo taken to send back to their ageing Mother. Now what do you think?

Thanks for stopping by, do come again:)

20 comments:

  1. What a brilliant idea for a blog. Lovin' the pix.

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  2. I like your idea very much! What a unique photo.

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  3. Photo longer have much to tell about the history of life. Although the look obsolete, but history is therein can not be forgotten.

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  4. I think your idea is a little (Black Wal)nutty but you are the plant expert so Ash it is... I enjoyed hearing your scenario. :)

    I love how the little step ladder on the right holds the fake backdrop/wall paper against the wall. Do you think the little "gifts" on the floor to the lower right are olives? And what is the mouse-shaped wooden(?) thing in near the hatchet burying brother's foot? They don't look "hardy" enough to be lumberjacks. Maybe their names are Sam and Olly C. (Oleaceae) Ash?

    :)

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  5. Right or wrong, I like your theory. ;-)

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  6. Well quite interesting photo. I think that these leaves might be young Tobbaco leaves. I agree with a family simbol theory but that sounds too strange for me :)

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  7. I sure wish they'd stuck gold, amassed a fortune, and left it for their descendants!! I believe the photo was taken in NYC because so many of the photos in the album were from there.

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  8. I've also got some photos with people posing with leaves. I've never found the reason. Certainly there is some significance that somehow has not been easily passed down through time. Hopefully someone someday will find this post and explain the history.

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  9. I think the seated gentleman is looking up because he just got bit by a flea on his backside and his brother buddy is telling him, without moving his lips, "Sit still and let's get this overwith. "

    Generally speaking...Olive leaves are smaller...tobacco leaves are larger. Interesting photo and what a fun scenerio you made up for it. Thanks!

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  10. Those are definitely not tobacco leaves! :)

    I'm wondering when the picture was taken - I have trouble dating men's clothes - but am guessing 1880-90-ish?

    I think if these men aren't just fooling around, perhaps they were "lumber barons" - two of many in the USA. I think lumbering slowly moved west over the years as the railroads opened up territories. If this picture came from New York, and has local lumber men, lumbering was done since day one - but starting in 1840s, on huge (de-foresting) scale. Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan by 1880s -

    I find many "lumber baron" stories similar to this one:

    "In 1845, Joshua Rathbun established himself in the lumber trade at Albany, NY. In 1865, the present firm of Rathbun & Co was formed consisting of Joshua & Acors Rathbun. The stock principally dealt in consists of oak, ash, black walnut, cherry, chestnut, and sycamore. Their trade extends throughout the country and largely in New York and New England."

    I would love to hear Norkio and FarSide's serious date guestimate on this photo.

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  11. I will guess that this is a 1890 photo...I am not good with dating mens clothing either..but I am getting better! Something tells me it is a tintype ( the blue shading and scratches) Joan can you tell us if it is a tintype? And what size the photo is?

    Iggy, Black Walnut is a good guess too..it could be...I have grown Tobacco..and these are not tobacco leaves at least not like any tobacco I have seen:)

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  12. What a great blogging idea! I love it. Congrats on being named a blog of note the other week. I love photography and appreciate your site. Come by my blogs if you have the inclination and the time! Thanks.

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  13. Yes, it is a tintype. It is only 2.5" w x 3.5" h. I never heard tales of anyone in the lumber business in the family. We had seamen, peddlers, and hat makers.

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  14. Oops, forgot to mention we had carpenters and cabinet makers.

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  15. I would suspect the cabinet makers myself. :) They would use both Ash and Walnut -

    I found an odd set of brothers (and I'm not saying these are the ones in the photos since the online pictures of them do not resemble these two men) but there was a very popular furniture company by the name of L. & J.G. (Leopold, and John George) Stickley in Fayetteville, New York as well as the Stickley Brothers, in Binghamton, New York established in the 1880's. Wouldn't this be a cool way to put the "family name" in a photo?

    Tintypes from what I've read were introduced in the USA around 1850-60ish and were popular well into the 1900s. So the fact this is a tintype doesn't narrow down the time window much 8at least not to a novice photo looker-at-er like me.) :)

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  16. Definitely not olive. Most probably an ash.
    Notice one of the leaves has fallen to the floor.

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  17. I love the blog. This one caught my eye. Very interesting. The leaves must of stood for something. Or maybe they were just experimenting with photography props..trying to do something different. Ash trees are involved in a lot of Norse and Greek mythology. Now you have me very curious.

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  18. Men's clothing is really hard to date because the changes can be so subtle. I found an 1890's era tintype that has similarities in the clothing to this one. The way the necktie is tied, the depth of the V shape of the vest, and the whisker types were all things I looked at. I'm not making any guarantees though, but I'd guess about 1890 on this image.

    Norkio

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  19. Since >80% of employment back then was in agriculture, I'm guessing the branches represent:

    1) Connection to the agricultural heritage of their families.

    2) That the brothers are 2 "branches" of the family, each fathers who have children of their own, but are connected by this shared heritage & family.

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  20. certainly is hard to explain these old photos,plants and all.But very interesting to see this window into the past.

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Hi, Thanks for the comments, your input on these old photos is appreciated! I don't do awards, award me a comment! English only please! This is a word verification free blog. I can no longer accept anonymous comments.
Connie