This is a blog about music, photography, history, and culture.
These are photographs from my collection that tell a story about lost time and forgotten music.

Mike Brubaker
{ Click on the image to expand the photo }

A Scottish Orchestra

31 October 2020

Harwich- The Low Lighthouse and Beacon Hill, c.1820
John Constable (1776 – 1837)
Source: Wikimedia

The world is connected by an infinite network
of unexpected lines of coincidence.
One thing links to another
though the fateful magic of pure happenstance. 

The Old Harbour Light, North Queensferry, 1909
Martin Hardie (1875 – 1952)
Source: Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts

Most of the time these lines are hidden.
But occasionally, if you look very closely,
you can find a link that accidently connects two places. 
In this case, it's a line drawn invisibly on a postcard

that goes from an English lighthouse
to a Scottish lighthouse.

The postcard photo shows a small orchestra
posed outside a doorway to an unknown building.
Seated in the center is the conductor holding his baton,
and around him are 16 musicians, mostly string players.
But there are two flutes, one piccolo, two cornets, 
and a piano player who stands on the right holding a roll of music.
Nearly all the gentlemen wear fine three-piece dark suits. 
With their thirteen mustaches,
it seems fair to date them to pre-World War One
and possibly even the years of King Edward VII.

connecting line
is found on the back of the postcard.

          Carlingnose Barracks
          North Ferry   

Dear Mr. Ward
      You will see that I have just got into Scot-
land and and (sic)  amongst the 'Reet tha noo'. Now
this is the small reproduction of the one you       
saw. I hope you are quite well. I am in the best    
now. I am in a little village about the size of Shotley
I had awfully railway journey starting 7 oclock     
last Saturday morning arriving here Sunday morning
9 oclock. I will write in my letter about this little   
Yours truly
                                           Herbert     / one of the old 'uns
sincere remembrance
to the wife                    

The writer, Herbert, gives his address as Carlingnose Barracks. This was a coastal defense installation that guarded the Firth of Forth, that is the estuary (firth) of the River Forth just north of Edinburgh, Scotland at the river crossing of the aptly named, North Queensferry. Above this village is a high bluff where an artillery battery was built in 1779 following a threat on Edinburgh from the celebrated (or notorious) American naval commander, John Paul Jones. The Carlingnose point offered a strong position for a concrete artillery emplacement overlooking the river. It remained in continuous use until after WW1 when it was closed. In WW2 it was reopened as an anti-aircraft battery. The Carlingnose Barracks closed permanently in 1957.

It is curious that only one of the musicians is dressed in the uniform of a British soldier, so I think the man holding a violin and seated to the right of the orchestra's conductor is Herbert. I also think he doubled on the euphonium at his feet, probably his main instrument as a bandsman assigned to Carlingnose. It seems most unlikely that any conductor would have the dexterity to play such large (and loud) bass instrument and still wave a baton at the same time.

Herbert's note was an added bonus to this photo, as my real interest was focused on an unusual instrument. The two flutists have instruments made in contrasting materials, blackwood on the left and silver on the right, which is interesting but not unusual for an ensemble of this era. But the two cornets are subtly different too. The one on the right is a standard cornet, but seated to the left of the conductor is a musician who stands out with a fancy white waistcoat. He is holding an Echo Cornet, just like the instrument used by Monsieur Gouget in my story from this September, Les Gougets - The Fantastic Horn Duo

The echo cornet is not an instrument called for in any orchestral music that I know, as it was novelty instrument of the late 19th century devised to produce a special effect typically found in solo pieces. To demonstrate this unusual cornet here is a solo rendition of  the 'Tit Willow' song, from The Mikado (1884-85) by Arthur Sullivan (1842-1900). It is played by Crispian Steele-Perkins on an Echo Cornet in C, made be F. Besson & Co, London, c.1875. The echo bell is the muffler-like appendage which uses a 4th valve to instantly redirect the cornet's sound from the main bell into a muting device. This particular tune would not be out of place on the program for this orchestra. The gentleman in the white waistcoat may have been a featured soloist on a program performed by Herbert's Fifeshire orchestra.

The postcard was sent to a Mr. Ward, who presumably lived near the village of Shotley which Herbert mentions. In the 1911 Census for the village of Shotley, there was a baker & grocer named Alfred Ward, age 52, who lived there with his wife Charlotte Ward, age 58, and two children, Beatrice E. Ward, age 29, a school teacher, and Fred H. Ward, age 28, a carpenter.

Shotley is situated on a peninsula between the River Stour and the River Orwell in the county of Suffolk, England. The two rivers converge at Shotley and flow into the North Sea between Harwich and the Port of Felixstowe. On the Harwich coastline, just two miles or so as the seagull flies, is a low lighthouse that was constructed in 1818 as one of a pair of leading lights to aid ship navigating into the port.

In this vintage postcard of the Promenade at Harwich, the low lighthouse is at the end of the boardwalk. The photographer took the photo in about the same position as the 1820 landscape by John Constable (1776 – 1837) which I used to begin my story. Today the stone lighthouse has been preserved as a maritime museum and park attraction.  

In a geographic straight line 340 miles northwest of Harwich is another small lighthouse. The Harbour Light Tower marks the ferry landing in North Queensferry. It was built in 1817, a year before the Harwich Low Lighthouse and in 1909 inspired the artist Martin Hardie (1875 – 1952) to make the etching which I used as my second image for this story. At the time it may have outlived its useful purpose as it was then overshadowed by a better way to cross the River Forth. 

When Herbert made his long railway journey north to Fifeshire, he would seen the light from high above the river on the great cantilever Forth Railway Bridge. This amazing structure is the world's second-longest single cantilever span, with a length of 1,709 feet (521 m). The track is 150 feet (45.72 m) above the water level at high tide. The three four-tower cantilever structures are 361 feet (110.03 m) tall, with each tower built on a separate granite pier. It is one of the marvels of the great age of British engineering, and one that surely took Herbert's breath away when his train crossed over it into the North Queensferry station.  

The little Habour Lighthouse at North Queensferry has been preserved and tourists can climb all 24 steps and see the restored functioning light. But they will be turning their cameras to more than the Forth Railway Bridge from its stubby tower. There are more engineering marvels in the opposite direction.

The Forth Road Bridge opened in 1964 and at the time was one of the longest suspension bridges outside of the United States. It spans 8,241 ft (2,512 m) and the towers are 512 ft (156 m) above the river. To the west is the Queensferry Crossing which carries the M90 motorway. It is a a three-tower cable-stayed bridge with an overall length of 1.7 miles (2.7 km) and with towers that stand at 679 ft (207m) tall. It was opened by Queen Elisabeth II on 4 September 2017. I wonder if she has a favorite bridge. My favorite is the first Forth bridge.

1887 Living model illustrating principle of the Forth Bridge.
Source: Wikimedia

In 1887 the two designers of the Forth Railway Bridge, English engineers Sir John Fowler and Sir Benjamin Baker, made a photo to demonstrate the strength of their cantilever bridge. Their design followed a principle used for thousands of years in bridge construction where a cantilever beam supports a light central girder. To illustrate the use of tension and compression in the bridge, they positioned Japanese engineer Kaichi Watanabe on a center beam supported by Fowler and Baker sitting in chairs representing the cantilevers, with their arms in tension and sticks they are holding under compression. One either end are cast iron bricks representing the cantilever end piers. Public anxiety over bridges falling down, especially railway bridges, was a very real fear in the 19th century. I've written about this concern before in Marching to the Sound of a Silent Drummer. This clever photo by Fowler, Baker, and Watanabe served to reassure the public that the Forth Railway Bridge would be safe.

One of the reasons I collect photo postcards like Herbert's Fifeshire orchestra is because I enjoy discovering the geography and history that is associated with them. It is pure coincidence that I could pick this card and be able to connect it to two lighthouses that match the Sepia Saturday theme image. It's a weekly game I continue to enjoy and learn from. Thanks, Alan,

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday

where everyone has seen the light.

Tubas, Cornets and Cowboy Hats

25 October 2020

There are many tubas and cornets in my photograph collection. And a good number of them are played by boys in soft caps. A local "kids band", unaffiliated with any school, was once a very common musical organization in American communities. Between 1905 and 1930, many of these bands, mostly with boy musicians but sometimes with girls, had a photo taken of their band to sell as a souvenir postcard to their supporters.


Brass bands were the most popular because the instruments were easier to learn and more durable against any harm from youthful enthusiasm. They also made more noise. The better photos of these kids bands are posed informally, usually outdoors. If the camera lens was any good it gives us a glimpse of young personalities, a guess at the sibling connections, and an estimate of musical skills. 

The postcard I'm featuring today has a boys' band that resembles many that I've shown before, with cornets, trombones, tubas, and snare drums. Except for one thing.
This is the only one with cowboys and horses.

From personal experience I can attest that horses are quite fond of brass bands. (But that's a photo story for another day.) I'm less sure about what sentiments cowboys have regarding  tubas and trombones, but I do know that it is very rare to find them all pictured together in a vintage photo.

And not just a couple of horses, but a half-dozen that includes a donkey too.


Put them altogether and it becomes a curious oddity of photography that invites more questions than the typical portrait or group photo. Unfortunately, like many of the photos in my collection, this postcard has more questions than answers.

Five cowboys and one cowgirl sit astride their horses (except for the cowpoke and his donkey), posing for the camera in front of a large white canvas tent. Crouching before them is a boys' brass band of nine boys assisted by three men, also with instruments. There are at least three cornets, two baritone horns, two trombones, one tuba, and snare and bass drums.  One man standing on the left wears a bowler hat and holds a bass drumstick. I think he may be the band's leader. The boys are roughly age 9 to 15, and wear regular clothes instead of band uniforms. Their short knee pants and the postcard's photo paper suggest a vague date from 1910 to 1930, probably closer to 1915-20.  They resemble the Famous Cadet Band of Malta-McConnelsville, OH which I featured in my November 2015 story on The Kid Band of Caldwell, Ohio.
But of course, the real interest in this photo are the cowboys and cowgirl. I don't think the way they are arranged is by happenstance. Each person fits a stereotype of the Hollywood Western. In the center, the man on the white horse is our lead character, and next to him is his cowgirl sweetheart. To the left is his old sidekick and the sidekick's younger sidekick. To the right is the faithful scout and the comic stable hand with his obstreperous donkey. I also think it's fair to say that the complexion of the men on far left and right could easily be Native-American or Mexican. It's an unlikely combination that doesn't fit the description for a typical gathering in small town America in this era.
The best clue to explain the occasion is the big tent in the background. This could be group of cowboy performers at a rodeo, a circus, or a wild-west show. Which would also make a good reason for a boys' brass band to be in attendance. With no notes on the postcard or other clues like German sofas, I can't be sure. Perhaps I'm mistaken and it's just a day at the Wyoming state fair with some local ranchers assembled for a parade.

But let's look closely at our heroic lead character. With his carefully knotted neckerchief, ten-gallon hat at aslant, and a long face chiseled out of Ponderosa Pine, that is the Hollywood image of a western cowboy straight off the range. And who gets to ride a white horse? Only one of the good guys, of course!

So off I went on a search for cowboy actors in America's early cinema. Naively, I thought it would be easy to find a match. One useful website, entitled Famous Cowboys Actors in Movies and TV Westerns, lists over 155 names with links to each actor's Wikipedia pages and filmography. Since I think this cowboy's postcard photo with a boys' band was taken around 1911-1920, surely no later than 1926, then he has to be an actor who appeared in a silent film. As he is a young man, perhap 20 something, this limits the search to men born before 1900. But it is still a long list.

Fortunately movie stars love the camera so there are lots, and Lots, and LOTS of square chins, long noses, and big hats with which to compare this cowboy's visage.

Gilbert M. "Broncho Billy" Anderson (1880 – 1971)
Source: Wikimedia

Let's start with Gilbert M. Anderson (1880 – 1971) also knows as "Broncho Billy".  Born Maxwell Henry Aronson in Little Rock, Arkansas to Jewish parents. At age 18 he left the Midwest to seek his fortune in the wild frontier of New York City, where Max found employment in vaudeville theatres and as a photographer's model. In 1903, he met Edwin S. Porter, an early film pioneer, who cast Aronson to appear in his Edison Co. motion picture The Great Train Robbery.  Aronson was so impressed by the thrill this motion picture gave audiences that he set off to create his own moving pictures.

Moving to Chicago he changed his name to Gilbert M. Anderson and started one of the first major film companies with George Kirke Spoor called Essanay Studios ("S and A" for Spoor and Anderson). Writing, directing and acting, Anderson appeared in over 300 silent short films, including a series of 148 popular westerns which transformed him into America's first cowboy film star, "Broncho Billy." Though the company headquarters remained in Chicago, Anderson traveled the country to find the best filming locations. Many of his early silent shorts were made in Niles, California. south-east of San Francisco.

However, despite gaining some success in films, in 1916 Anderson sold his share in Essanay Studios and bought a theatre in New York City. His later attempts to get back into Hollywood films were not successful. And as far as I know, he didn't ride a favorite horse in New York. So I don't think he is my mystery cowboy.

Tom Mix (1880 – 1940)
1921 movie poster for "Hands Off!"

Tom Mix, (1880 – 1940), is another early cowboy actor who fits the bill. Born Thomas Hezikiah Mix, in the appropriately named town of Mix Run, Pennsylvania, Tom was the son of a stable master for a wealthy lumber merchant, and learned to ride and love horses at an early age. After moving to Oklahoma and trying various odd jobs, he found work at the Miller Brothers 101 Ranch, one of the largest cattle ranches in the West, covering 101,000 acres, which gave it its name. The ranch promoted itself with its own touring Wild West show in which Mix proved to be a skilled horseman and expert marksman, winning national riding and roping contests in 1909 and 1910.

In 1909 he got a supporting part in a short film, The Cowboy Millionaire, produced by the Selig Polyscope Company. Shot in Los Angeles, the film was a great success and Mix went on to appear in over 100 films for the Selig studio. When the studio was hit with financial problems, Mix signed a contract with Fox Films and went on to make 291 films in his career, all but nine of which were silent movies. 

In 1913 he moved his family to a ranch in Prescott, Arizona. At his new home called the Bar Circle A Ranch, Mix built his own studio where many of his films were shot. His success and fame made him one of the highest paid actors in the 1920s. And his characters defined him as the first Hollywood cowboy star.

From 1929 to 1930, Mix also toured with the Sells-Floto Circus at a reported weekly salary of $20,000. With his earlier work in rodeos, Tom Mix was clearly just the type of Western showman who might pose for a photo with a boys' band. But there's just one problem matching him to my mystery cowboy. His horse.

Tom Mix rode a horse called "Tony the Wonder Horse", who was credited for 34 films between 1924 and 1932. When Mix placed his handprints into the concrete sidewalk outside Grauman's Chinese Theatre in 1927, Tony’s hoofprints were right there alongside them. Tony was the first horse to be given equal billing with his human costar, and was featured in the title of three movies: Just Tony (1922), Oh! You Tony (1924), and Tony Runs Wild (1926). 

The problem is that Tony was a dark horse, not a white horse. So I don't think my cowboy could be Tom Mix. 

William S. Hart (1864 – 1946)
Source: Motion Picture Magazine, June 1917

The next cowboy actor has, I think, the best face match. He is William S. Hart, (1864 – 1946), one of the best-known actors of the silent film era. Hart was born in Newburgh, New York and got his acting start in traveling companies who toured the country. He played roles in Shakespeare and was in the original 1899 stage production of Ben-Hur. For a short time in 1900, Hart even directed productions at the opera house in Asheville, North Carolina, where I now live. 

After returning to New York City, he got parts in a few short films. But it wasn't until 1914 at the age of 49 that he got his big break starring as the lead in the Western feature The Bargain. For the next 14 years, Hart appeared in 75 films, nearly all as some kind of cowboy. He was a major Hollywood Western star who owned Billy the Kid's "six shooters" and was a friend of legendary lawmen Wyatt Earp and Bat Masterson. In 1923 he was Wild Bill Hickok in the movie of the same name. 

Hart's sharp, craggy face resembles my mystery cowboy, but if my photo was taken in 1915 he would be too old to be a match. And once again there's a problem with the horse too. 

Bill Hart's horse was named Fritz, and was the first horse to get its name in film credits. Like Tom Mix's Tony, Fritz was a very talented horse who carried Hart through many thrilling stunts. For my purposes the problem is that Fritz was a brown and white pinto.  

Fred Thomson (1890 – 1928)

The last cowboy actor I've considered as a possible match is not so well known anymore, but is the only candidate who was a genuine native westerner. Fred Thomson (1890 – 1928) was born in Pasadena, California, the son of a  a Presbyterian minister. From 1910 to 1913 Fred attended the Princeton Theological Seminary, where he played football and was awarded three times the All-Around Champion title given out by the Princeton Amateur Athletic Union. 

In 1917 when the United States declared war on Germany, Thomson enlisted as a chaplain in the 143rd Field Artillery Regiment from California, known informally at the time as the Mary Pickford Regiment after the movie star. Before his unit was sent to France, Thomson broke his leg playing football and was sent to hospital. It was there he met Pickford and her screenwriter Frances Marion who were visiting patients in the ward. Just like in a Hollywood romance, Thomson and Marion fell in love and soon arranged to marry after the war. Fortunately Fred's unit arrived to late in France to see any action and when he returned he married Frances in November 1919 with Pickford as maid of honor. 

It was through Frances  that Thomson found work in Hollywood films. In 1921 he appeared with Mary Pickford in The Love Light. By 1923 he was starring in a Universal production, The Eagle's Talons, where he performed his own stunts. The other big studios took notice of his cinematic talent, and in 1924 he signed with Film Booking Offices of America, the studio run by Joseph P. Kennedy, father of President John F. Kennedy. By 1926 Fred Thomson was ranked as Number 2 in box office stars, and was promoted as  "The World's Greatest Western Star". He went on to make 30 films, including playing Kit Carson in the 1928 movie Kit Carson, shortly before his tragic death. In December that year while working in his stables, Thomson stepped on a nail and contracted tetanus, which his doctors initially misdiagnosed. He died on Christmas Day, 1928. 

Fred had a wonder horse too, a white Palomino named Silver King. In a quote from Thomson's Wikipedia page, Al Rogell, who directed Thomson's first seven Western films said,

He did all of the work...everything in the early pictures—the mouth work, the jumps, the chases, the falls, quick stops—and could untie knots, lift bars, etc. He could wink one eye, nod his head yes or no, push a person with his head. Thomson trained him to do certain things and expected him to perform them

Fred Thomson's Silver King seemed a nearly perfect match for my mystery cowboy's horse. Except for one little thing. Silver King stood 17 hands high at the shoulder, or 5 ft 8 inches. My cowboy's white horse doesn't measure up to that. 

So I surrender. I'm hanging my spurs up on this mystery. Tuba plumbing and the history of German sofas I can figure out, but Hollywood cowboys and horses? I give up, pardner. Here's my badge and guns. I'm heading back to the old homestead.

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where hugging, kissing, and other close contact
are not permitted by order of state health authorities.


Movie poster from Just Tony (1922)
Source: Wikimedia


William S. Hart with his horse Fritz
and Mary Thurman in Sand! (1920)
Source: Wikimedia



Fred Thomson and Silver King the Horse
in Silver Comes Thru (1927)
Source: Wikimedia

Violins of France

17 October 2020

For melodious tunes and songs so sweet
virtuosoi of Italy just can't be beat.

While the brazen violins of Hungary and Austria
will play dances so fast it will surely exhaust ya.


But there's none to compare for brash reckless romance
than the fearless young fiddlers of France!

* * *


These two young acrobatic musicians
prove that the violin,
a difficult instrument to play
even with the best posture,
can be made even more challenging
if one twists their mind around it.

The boy and presumably his older sister
appear on an undated postcard with the singular title
Les French.

The card was printed in Dijon, France,
the city of fine mustard,
and is similar to postcards of French entertainers
from around 1908-1920.

I wonder if the duo ever played cellos too.



This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where everyone jumps for joy at the new improved Blogger.

The Clown Band

09 October 2020


The Circus

by C. J. Dennis, (1876–1938)

Hey, there! Hoop-la! the circus is in town!
Have you seen the elephant? Have you seen the clown?
Have you seen the dappled horse gallop round the ring?
Have you seen the acrobats on the dizzy swing?
Have you seen the tumbling men tumble up and down?
Hoop-la! Hoop-la! the circus is in town!

Hey, there! Hoop-la! Here’s the circus troupe!
Here’s the educated dog, jumping through the hoop.
See the lady Blondin with the parasol and fan,
The lad upon the ladder and the india-rubber man.
See the joyful juggler and the boy who loops the loop.
Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! Here’s the circus troupe!

*** ***

This clown band and its educated bull terrier
were not identified on this small 4"x3" snapshot photo.
They stand outside the doorway of a crude shack
which has a damaged foundation
that tilts down alarmingly on one side.
It gives the photo an absurd quality
that matches the fantastic faces of the clown troupe.

Their clown uniforms are, needless to say, not any standard to make a judgement of when or where the photo was taken. My best guess is roughly 1910-1930, somewhere in the United States. These six zany musicians could be a group of amateurs like the Zanesville Rube Band, but I think they look too professional, especially their shoes. Check out the shoe size of the cymbal player in the doorway, and the stray boot behind the snare drummer. Those are the footwear of professional fools.

Clarence Michael James Stanislaus (C.J.) Dennis (1876–1938)
Source: Wikimedia Commons

This poem was written by C. J. Dennis, (1876–1938),  a prolific Australian poet celebrated for his humorous poetry, often in dialect verse. His full name was Clarence Michael James Stanislaus Dennis, and he was born in Auburn, South Australia. He published his first poem at age 19 while employed as a solicitor's clerk. He moved on to work at numerous literary publications and newspapers. His second book of poetry, The Songs of a Sentimental Bloke, published in 1916, sold 65,000 copies in its 1st year, and by 1917 he had become the most successful poet in Australian history. During his lifetime C. J. Dennis produced over 12 collections of poetry. This poem, The Circus, appeared in A Book for Kids, published in 1921.

Dennis died in 1938 in Melbourne at age 61. Joseph Lyons, then Prime Minister of Australia, said of him: "I am sure that I speak for all Australians in expressing deep regret at the death of C. J. Dennis. He was the Robert Burns of Australia. He created characters which have become immortal and he captured the true Australian spirit. Already his work is world-famous, and future generations will treasure it."

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where ice cream is on special offer all weekend.

Cornetists at Ease

02 October 2020

The best trumpet players
can seem very relaxed
with a carefree manner.

They develop a cheerful spirit
that displays a nonchalant
in their instrument

They never get anxious or agitated.
They just sit back and wait their turn,
knowing they have the best tunes to play.




* * *



The first musician, a very dapper gentleman, holds a piston valve trumpet, not a cornet. With its mouthpiece on his lips, he could very well be playing a melody from the folio of sheet music attached to the lyre clip on his instrument.

But if we look closely we can see there is a piece of string tied to the back brim of his straw hat which runs down to the front of his coat, presumably secured to a button. I can only think this is a practical accessory to prevent the loss of his boater hat should a gust of wind come up while he is performing. This postcard photo was never mailed and I believe it is likely of French origin from around 1910.



* * *



The second musician has a cornet which is more curvaceous than the trumpet. Otherwise the two instruments share the same sound, pitch, range, and fingerings.

This gentleman is posed seated on curious high back upholstered chair and seemingly floating on a cloud of smoke. This cabinet card photograph was taken by H. R. Huested of Pulaski, Orwell, and Altmar, New York. Three small towns in the upper state north of Syracuse, NY.


On the back is name and place for the cornetist, Clarence Reese, Kirkville, NY. Kirkville is a hamlet, east of Syracuse. In the 1900 US Census for Syracuse, Clarence G. Reese, age 26, single, was living at home with his parents George and Fanny Reese. Clarence was employed as a street car conductor.

In 1910 Clarence was still in Syracuse, but now married three years to Katherine E. Reese. His occupation was now listed as Machinist, Automobile Works. He may have worked at the factories of either the H. A. Moyer Automobile Company, or the Franklin Automobile Company, both founded in Syracuse.


I found two newspaper reports from 1902 and 1903 of Clarence Reese playing his cornet for events at a lodge of the Independent Order of Good Templars. This was a fraternal Temperance society that was started in 1850, in Utica, New York. Though based on quasi-masonic rituals this abstinence organization was also open to women and made no restrictions on race. It became very popular in the 19th century and by 1900 had hundreds of chapters around the world. It remains an active society today with membership in Europe, Africa, Asia, as well as the United States. 


Since Clarence does not wear a wedding ring on his left hand. I believe this photo was taken before 1907, perhaps around 1902. In the center of his bow tie is a small pin with what looks like a fraternal symbol.

* * *

Hello Carrie what do you think of
that for a little boy like me. Well
I expect to come your way

Guy H.      So So.

The third cornet player is posed outdoors seated on a kitchen chair. He wears a very fancy bandsman's uniform with embroidered stripes on his trousers. We know him as Guy H., but the object of his affection was on the postcard's address, Miss Carrie Hengst, of Roaring Springs, Blair Co. Pennsylvania. The postmark is obscured, but the undivided back, dates it to pre-1907.

A quick search of produced a likely family tree match with Carrie May Hengst, born in 1886, in King, PA. In 1907 she married George Henry Guyer in Roaring Springs. He was also born in Pennsylvania in 1885. His 1918 draft card offers a signature that I think matches the handwriting style of Guy H.  (The other information was filled in by the registrar.)


Was it Guy's cornet playing?
His uniform?
Or just his way with words?
Whatever it was,
Guy got her attention and
Carrie was impressed.

This is my contribution to Sepia Saturday
where the sun is always shining.




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