Another fantastic photo that I felt compelled to post after editing phase. The rich joy of this hobby is that while you are restoring the beauty from beneath the dust and scratches and stains, you almost feel like you’e inhabited the scene for awhile. Maybe like you’ve gotten to know something new about these wanderers of the old world. You imagine the mood or spirit, or what the day was like, or what they were looking forward to. You contemplate the (dis)comfort of their dress or the reason for their posture or position. You think about about the meaning of objects you see or the facial expressions you are interpreting. You wonder of their life and experience.
So it was with this “Jolly Six” as they are labeled — taking a Wednesday in the Wolbach photo studio of Wadsworth, Ohio, to sit for a photograph together. Wolbach is noted in an embossed mark on the thick border, bottom right of front side, as follows:
I enjoy their grouping together, some seated, some standing — positions and arms seeming to encircle one another in a way that conveys warm company with one another. There are expressions varying from boredom to uncertainty, to amusement, to distraction.
My maternal great grandmother is here, Rose Marie Fink, with I presume five of her friends. I’m marking them as 1 through 6.
And the back, quite nicely — is full of information.
First it says “Jolly Six” (self-named?), then Number (?) Six — perhaps they wanted you to not labor over counting the number of people featured here in the photo. Then we have a partial set of names:
Bissie L. (probably means Bessie)
?Lirtie (perhaps Lottie?) Soy?
Tracie R (e or i).
And we have two written dates — the earlier marked as “taken” January 27, 1909; the later, likely the time the writing on the back was inscribed onto this print back.
We have the location, Wadsworth, Ohio — where the photographer operated and presumably, this crew all lived.
Then you have some modern writing, handwriting like my own mother’s (is that you, mom?), that clarifies Rose Fink’s relation, and the suspicion of Rose being the leftmost woman here (#1).
I’m not 100% on this, but I’m leaning toward Rose being #5. Basing this on some comparisons as follows — what do you think? These others haven’t been shared on wise.pics prior to now.
Here’s #1 for comparison
It’s worth noting that Rose would only be 14 years old in this image (born March in 1894), and to me, girl #5 looks younger than the other women. I also note that young woman #1 wears an apparent wedding ring, and while I’m uncertain of the engagement date (or traditions of the time), she wasn’t married to my maternal great-grandfather Joseph DeVoe, until 1910.
As for the other women, I haven’t confirmed the identities — but we have some clues.
I found a Jessie L Gish born ~ 1890 (would be 18yo in this photo) who married Fred A Hantzsche in may 1910 in Medina, OH and lived in Guilford township (right next to Wadsworth); I messaged a living grandson for help, but haven’t heard back yet.
For Jennie Sharp — I found a Jennie Dell Sharp born Sept 9, 1888 (would be 20yo in this photo); married Henry Rhodes 1919 in Summit Co (right next to Medina Co)
Candidates for “Bessie L”: I found a Bessie Leatherman (who could actually be a relative, as Leatherman’s are connected)– born 26 Sept 1890, daughter of Alvin Leatherman; married ___ Williams; died 1981; or a Bessie Irene Leatherman (this time Leatherman is the married name), birth date: 3 Jul 1888, daughter of Jacob Overholt.
The others are elusive for now — but await your sleuthing.
- Which woman do you feel is most likely to be Rose Marie Fink?
- Where was the Wolbach Studio located in Wadsworth? — can’t find the address (yet)
- What are the full identities of the other 5 women? — we have some leads.