Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Probably sometime in the summer of 1891, the hired girl finished a dress for my great grandfather Colonel. Back then, my great-great grandparents could afford a hired girl for the house and a hired man to help with the chores. Back then, little boys wore dresses. I suppose it was partly Victorian elaboration, partly the fact that changes in boy's clothing marked their changing status towards adulthood.

Colonel and Ada, circa 1891-1892.

My great grandfather is around five-years-old in the picture, Ada is perhaps a year to a year-and-a-half.

My great grandfather had big ears. I remember them from when I was a child. We went to his house in the summer and picked strawberries from his sandy garden. He lifted a board and showed up an enormous toad underneath. The last time I saw him he was suffering from senility, claiming that a neighbor had stolen his lawn mower when my uncle had taken it away for safety reasons. He died in January 1974.

My mother has the dress and the lace collar, still in good condition almost 120 years later.

Colonel's dress.

Little boys graduated to short pants and then, a bit later, to long pants. By age 10 they were wearing adult-style clothing.

From left: Harrison, Perry (back), Charles (front) Ada, and Colonel, circa 1898.

Grandma said the Ransoms always spent a lot of money on clothes.

Newer›  ‹Older

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

comments powered by Disqus