A Detroiter, Circa 1910s by Photographer Charles J. Merz

Real Photo Postcard, circa 1907 – 1918. Detroit, Michigan. AZO Stamp Box.

Price:  $10.00

We’re taking liberties with the title of this post by presuming that the subject above lived in Detroit. In any case, he’s a handsome guy, here in dark suit, light-colored tie and pocket handkerchief, and a detachable collar. He’s seated in a carved wooden chair, which most likely, belonged to the photographer. And we wonder if this chair could have folded – is that a seam we’re seeing on our right above the armrest, or is it just part of the carving?

The time-frame for the card is based on the AZO stamp box, all four triangles pointing up, and the fact that it is a Divided Back card.

As for the photographer:  Charles John Merz, son of Christian Merz and Elizabeth Trost, was born September 14, 1872, in Michigan. Both parents were born in Germany. He married Buffalo, New York native,Tillie Bischy on June 5, 1901. Their daughter, Olive, was born about 1905. And, it turns out that Merz was in the photography business for decades, which is unusual for the time, given that most photographers (and there was so many that went into the trade) had either a rather short-lived career, or had moved on to other occupations by the 1920s. (It would be interesting to see statistics on this subject.)

Charles appears to have gotten started in the photography business around age 20, or a little earlier. The 1893 city directory shows he was working for, or with, photographer, Herman Baron, at 49 Monroe Ave in Detroit. By 1896 he is with the C. M. Hayes & Co. studio, and listed as a printer. The most recent city directory with the Michigan Avenue business address was found for 1919. On the 1920, ’30 and ’40 census records he is listed as a commercial photographer. By 1930 he, Tillie and Olive, are living in Livonia.

In searching for other photographs or cards several can be currently found for sale online. But, the Clements Library at the University of Michigan holds an old album containing photos from 1888 to about 1910, about 147 total, including a self-portrait. These images are not online but see the link below for more info.

Sources: “Real Photo Postcard Stamp Boxes A-B.” (Playle.com). https://www.playle.com/realphoto/photoa.php. (accessed May 24, 2022).

Year: 1880; Census Place: Frenchtown, Monroe, Michigan; Roll: 595; Page: 399B; Enumeration District: 178. (Ancestry.com).

R. L. Polk & Co.’s Detroit City Directory, 1893. pp. 232 and 847. Ancestry.com. U.S., City Directories, 1822-1995.

R. L. Polk & Co.’s Detroit City Directory, 1895. p. 961. Ancestry.com. U.S., City Directories, 1822-1995.

Year: 1900; Census Place: Detroit Ward 10, Wayne, Michigan; Roll: 751; Page: 3; Enumeration District: 0109; FHL microfilm: 1240751. (Ancestry.com).

Michigan Department of Community Health, Division of Vital Records and Health Statistics; Lansing, MI, USA; Michigan, Marriage Records, 1867-1952; Film: 73; Film Description: 1901 Tuscola-1902 Branch. (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1910; Census Place: Detroit Ward 14, Wayne, Michigan; Roll: T624_686; Page: 13B; Enumeration District: 0217; FHL microfilm: 1374699. (Ancestry.com).

Ancestry.com. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918.

R. L. Polk & Co.’s Detroit City Directory, 1919. p. 2840. Ancestry.com. U.S., City Directories, 1822-1995.

Year: 1920; Census Place: Detroit Ward 15, Wayne, Michigan; Roll: T625_814; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 457. (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1930; Census Place: Livonia, Wayne, Michigan; Page: 5A; Enumeration District: 1015; FHL microfilm: 2340810. (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1940; Census Place: Livonia, Wayne, Michigan; Roll: m-t0627-01833; Page: 12A; Enumeration District: 82-177A. (Ancestry.com).

“Charles J. Merz Photograph Album (1888 – ca. 1910).”  Charles J. Merz photograph album, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan. (accessed May 24, 2022).

Two Swedish Women

Divided Back, Real Photo Postcard, circa 1907 – 1910. Photographer:  Fred A. Grinolds. CYKO stamp box.

Price:  $15.00

“These two girls came 3 miles last Sunday to have me take their picture they are both Swedes and are engaged to be married soon they cant talk very good English yet write me if you are coming to Cal”

I think these ladies may be sisters, there seems to be a definite resemblance. Don’t you love the hats? In particular, I love the long cloak of the woman on our left, with that double row of decorative buttons. Too bad the photographer didn’t include their names in the above note. But still, we appreciate the fact that he did write a description, and we appreciate the sense of occasion  it would have been for the women, Swedish immigrants, both engaged to be married.

As for the photographer, he was Fred Albert Grinolds, born in Oil City, Pennsylvania, March 2, 1879, mother’s maiden name Swartz. Fred must not have been in the photography business for very long:  November 15, 1911, he married Elba Vera Lovelass in Marshfield, Coos County, Oregon, his occupation given as “ratchet setter” (at a sawmill). By the 1918 WWI Draft Registration, he was working as a millwright at the Old Dominion Company (a copper mining operation) in Globe, Arizona. Nothing was found for him online under the photographer heading, but it sounds like this would have been in California, before he got married. He and Edna had two daughters, Edna and Bertha. Below is Fred’s obit found in The Modesto Bee, August 22, 1960:

Sources:  “California Death Index, 1940-1997,” database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VPWR-WK9 : 26 November 2014), Fred A Grinolds, 21 Aug 1960; Department of Public Health Services, Sacramento.

Year: 1910; Census Place: Newport, Coos, Oregon; Roll: T624_1280; Page: 10B; Enumeration District: 0052; FHL microfilm: 1375293.

Registration State: Arizona; Registration County: Gila County. Ancestry.com. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918.

“Fred A. Grinolds.” The Modesto Bee, August 22, 1960. Monday, p. 10. (Newspapers.com).

E. W. Jackson, Photographer, Florida

Edward W. Jackson, African-American, born in Georgia circa 1857, was the son of Alfred Jackson and wife Louisa. He died September 10, 1913 in Athens, Georgia.  Photo from James T. Haley’s compilation, Sparkling Gems of Race Knowledge Worth Reading, published in 1897. E. W. Jackson worked as a photographer in Key West, Orlando and Jacksonville, Florida, and was manager for a time for the Davis Photo Gallery in Jacksonville. See his Cabinet Card on this website for Willie Joseph Brennan.

E. W.’s short obituary below, referencing his well-known brother, was the key to finding out more:  A. P. Jackson was Albin P., born in Athens Georgia, two or three years younger than Edward. Albin’s unusual given name, helped greatly in locating the family in census records and thus determining that the E. was for (one would guess and be incorrect often, but in this case not – Edward. Most likely Edward was also born in Athens, Georgia.

Below, a timeline gleaned from the usual sources – city directories, census, historical newspapers and Google books:

1870 Federal Census for Athens GA, age 13, parents Alfred and Louisa. Siblings Camilla, Albin, Billie, Mary and Judy.

1880 Federal Census for Athens, age 23, working at a drug store. Father’s occupation whitewasher, mother, washer and ironer, brother Albin, barber, sister Bettie, washer and ironer and sister Judy, at school. Albin is about 3 years younger than Edward. Children’s and mother’s race listed as mulatto on this census, father’s as black.

1885 married according to the 1900 Federal Census. Wife Eva W., born in Florida about June 1854.

1887-1888 Edward W. Jackson, artist, 121 Market, Jacksonville per city directories – possibly correct for E. W. as an artist.

1896 – Jacksonville. Edward W. Jackson, manager at Davis Photo Gallery, 17 1/2 E. Bay, resides Clay near W. Ashley. Wife, Eva W. Jackson, dressmaker.

1898 photographer in Orlando, per the dated cabinet card for young Willie Brennan, see link above.

1900 Federal Census for Key West Florida, 617 Whitehead St. Photographer, married about 1885, born May 1855 in GA. Wife, Eva W. is listed as having eight children, all living. No children listed for Edward and none living with the couple so, it’s possible the children are from a prior marriage for Eva.

1908 moved his photography studio from Orlando to Jacksonville, as reported to a weekly photography publication.

1910 Federal Census for Jacksonville, renting at 417 1/2 Broad St. Married but wife not with him on this census. Photographer at gallery.

1913 Jacksonville City Directory. Edward W. Jackson, photographer, married. 417 1/2 Broad St., home, same address.

Lastly, of note:  Edward’s brother Albin P. Jackson, was written up in a nice newspaper article, “Story of A. P. Jackson is one of Success” from the Orlando Evening Reporter-Star, November 12, 1914. Albin, the manager of the San Juan Barbershop in Orlando, had saved for he and his wife’s future, and bought an orange grove and a pecan grove.

Sources:  E. W. Jackson. n.d. https://en.everybodywiki.com/E.W._Jackson (accessed May 22, 2021).

Haley, James T. (1897) Sparkling Gems of Race Knowledge Worth Reading. J. T. Haley & Company. Web:  https://www.google.com/books/edition/Sparkling_Gems_of_Race_Knowledge_Worth_R/UmU9AQAAMAAJ?q=e.w.+jackson+orlando+photographer&gbpv=1#f=false.

Year: 1880; Census Place: Athens, Clarke, Georgia; Roll: 140; Page: 279B; Enumeration District: 012. (Ancestry.com).

Albin P. Jackson from Miller & Mayfield’s Orlando, Florida city directory 1915-1916. p. 270. (Ancestry.com city directories).

Year: 1870; Census Place: Athens, Clarke, Georgia; Roll: M593_143; Page: 352A (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1880; Census Place: Athens, Clarke, Georgia; Roll: 140; Page: 279B; Enumeration District: 012 (Ancestry.com).

Vance’s Jacksonville and St. Augustine Directory and Florida Hotel Guide, 1896, Vol II, p. 153. (Ancestry.com city directories).

Year: 1900; Census Place: Key West, Monroe, Florida; Page: 4; Enumeration District: 0098; FHL microfilm: 1240174. (Ancestry.com).

Chambers, Frank V. and Bartlet, John, editors. Bulletin of Photography And the Photographers, Vol. 3. July – December 1908. p. 267.

Year: 1910; Census Place: Jacksonville Ward 7, Duval, Florida; Roll: T624_159; Page: 1B; Enumeration District: 0084; FHL microfilm: 1374172. (Ancestry.com).

R. L. Polk & Co.’s 1913 Jacksonville City Directory, Vol. XIV. p. 686. (Ancestry.com city directories).

The Orlando Sentinel, September 13, 1913. Saturday, p. 5. (Newspapers.com).

“Story of A. P. Jackson is one of Success” Orlando Evening Reporter-Star. November 12, 1914. Thursday, p. 5.  (Newspapers.com).

Dutch Woman In Traditional Headdress

Postcard, unused. Photographer:  A. W. Verschoore de la Hoiussaye. Lange Vorststraat – Goes. Telf 44. Platen blijven voor nabestelling bewaard. Circa late 1910s – 1920s.

Price:  To be determined

That last line above, in the photographer’s information on the reverse, translates to “Records will be kept for reordering.” Lange Vorststraat, is the name of the street (literally translating to “long frost street”) in the city of Goes, province of Zeeland, Netherlands.

Photographer Adriaan Willem Verschoore de la Hoiussaye (sometimes spelled Houssaije) was born November 18, 1896 in either Middelburg or Den Bosch, Netherlands and died August 10, 1981. As of the date of this web post, we’re seeing only one other possible postcard (a digital) example from the website, Saving Photography (wonderful photos on this site, see link below in Sources) but we’ve just reached out to someone who will hopefully be able to help determine this postcard’s potential value.

We see a beautiful young woman (love that direct, soul-searching gaze) in short sleeves with a shoulder wrap of gingham and embroidered border; a carefully arranged bolero necklace fastened with a small, perhaps silver or gold medal; seven strands of possibly coral beads covering her neck; and a white cap fanning out into a grand display of starched lace, framing the subject’s face, and extending all the way past her shoulders – as if the head covering could have been worn down and flowing but, of course, is pulled up and starched to show off the work and identify the location that this young lady was from (or was modeling for). The lacework is gorgeous, no surprise, but click the image twice to enlarge, and you’ll notice some parallel lines running out toward the border on our left, and more lines on our right. Looking at the artist’s patterns – something about them reminds me of angels’ wings or maybe feathers.

I have no idea what the small flag-type things are, one dark, and one light, that are on each side of the woman’s forehead – some part of the traditional costume, it would seem, and maybe they help to fasten the headdress. An expert in the field of traditional folk wear could give us a much better description than I’ve attempted to do here, but I have to say that, were I twenty again (sorry, not trying to cop out on the age thing) I would love to take up this field of study. Maybe as a hobby in upcoming retirement, though!

Sources:  A. W. Verschoore de la Hoiussaye, Dutch Photographer. https://peoplepill.com/people/a-w-verschoore-de-la-houssaye/ (accessed November 17, 2020).

Zeeuws Archief; Den Haag, Nederland; BS Birth. Ancestry.com. Netherlands, Birth Index, 1784-1917.

“Portrait of an unknown lady.” Saving Photography. https://www.nl12.nl/saving-photography/#jp-carousel-3107 (accessed November 17, 2020).

Photographer E. M. Davidson

“Davidson’s Art Parlors, Main Street, Visalia, Cal. Work done in the latest and best styles. E. M. Davidson, Proprietor.”

Michigan native, E. M. Davidson, was a photographer best known for his work when he resided in Visalia, CA which was from at least 1887 to March 1894, at which point he sold his business to Frank and William Beck. From Visalia he went to Woodland (a city of prior residence), CA and set up shop there in May 1894 before  moving on to other areas of California. He died in 1915.

E. M. Davidson, the photographer for the prior post, was Ellis Marillo Davidson, born April 1858 in Michigan, son of George B. Davidson and Esther (Dopking) Davidson. He married Harriet Mabel Bittleson on June 10, 1884 in San Joaquin County, CA. They had one son, Herbert Orr Davidson and an adopted (per the 1900 Federal Census) daughter, Anna L. Davidson. Harriet died February 26, 1904 in Alameda. Ellis M. Davidson died May 6, 1915 in Santa Clara County, CA. Carte-de-visites, Cabinet Cards and other works can be found online for E. M. Davidson, including some images taken during the drama that had played out in the photographer’s “backyard” in June 1893, surrounding the capture of fugitive train robbers John Sontag and Chris Evans.

E. M. Davidson came to California sometime after the 1860 Federal Census was taken in Keeler Township, Van Buren County, Michigan and before the 1870 Federal Census was taken in Cache Creek Township, Yolo County, California. On the 1870 he is age 12, living with his mother, Esther Davidson; possible brother, Arthur D. Davidson, Dora H. Davidson, age 15, relationship unknown; and head of household Theodore F. Dopking, age 42, possible brother of Esther (Dopking) Davidson.

The first online record found for Ellis as a photographer is a California National Guard record showing he served in the Guard March 19 to September 6, 1881. City of residence not listed.

1884 finds the photographer on the voter registration record living in Stockton, CA.

1887 is the first mention we found online for Ellis in Visalia, CA, where he would live and work until March of 1894.

From the Visalia Daily Times, June 12, 1893, E. M. Davidson as part of a group that had visited (revisited for some) the recent location of the Battle of Stone Corral.

Below, a week later, also from the DailyTimes, and with the overly dramatic (but understandably so) title, an account from Davidson of a visit to the former site of the cave hideout of Evans and Sontag. This was just after Sontag’s capture at Stone Corral and the subsequent capture of Chris Evans.

On a lighter note, from the Daily Delta (Visalia) in July 1893:

1894 – 1896 show voter registration records, E. M. Davidson working as a photographer in Woodland, CA.

By the 1900 census, Davidson is living in Alameda Township, Alameda County, CA, occupation photographer. And listed on the San Francisco city directory for the same year, residence Alameda, business address 708 Sutter, San Francisco. 1903 – 1903 residence address found as 1215 Park Ave, Alameda.

And by the 1910 census, living in Salinas, CA with his son and daughter-in-law, occupation photographer.

Sources:  Original data: California, Marriages, 1850-1945. Salt Lake City, Utah: FamilySearch, 2013. (Ancestry.com).

John Sontag. n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Sontag (accessed December 17, 2019).

Christopher Evans (outlaw). n.d. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christopher_Evans_(outlaw) (accessed December 17, 2019).

Year: 1860; Census Place: Keeler, Van Buren, Michigan; Roll: M653_562; Page: 814; Family History Library Film: 803562. Year: 1870; Census Place: Cache Creek, Yolo, California; Roll: M593_93; Page: 446B; Family History Library Film: 545592. Year: 1900; Census Place: Alameda Precinct 2, Alameda, California; Page: 10; Enumeration District: 0310; FHL microfilm: 124008. Year: 1910; Census Place: Salinas Ward 2, Monterey, California; Roll: T624_89; Page: 18B; Enumeration District: 0003; FHL microfilm: 1374102. (Ancestry.com).

Office of the Adjutant General. Military Records, 1850–1942. Military Dept., Adjutant General’s Office Records (1850–1944), ID Number R186. California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, California. (Ancestry.com).

California State Library, California History Section; Great Registers, 1866-1898; Collection Number: 4 – 2A; CSL Roll Number: 119; FHL Roll Number: 977281 and 137; FHL Roll Number: 978594. (Ancestry.com).

The San Francisco Examiner. April 21, 1887. Thursday, p. 8. (Newspapers.com).

In Jail. John Sontag Meets His Match.” Visalia Daily Times. June 12, 1893. Monday, p. 4. “Fort Defiance Taken.” Visalia Daily Times. June 19, 1893. Monday, p. 1. Sale of business, Visalia Daily Times. March 16, 1894. Friday, p. 4. (Newspapers.com).

Daily Delta. July 22, 1893. Saturday, p. 3. Daily Delta. July 26, 1893. Wednesday, p. 3. (Newspapers.com).

H. S. Crocker Co.’s Crocker-Langley San Francisco Directory, 1900. p. 507. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

F. M. Husted’s Husted’s Oakland Alameda & Berkeley Directory, 1903. p. 480. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

Charles G. Carleton, Photographer, Waterville, Maine

Charles G. Carleton or C. G. Carleton – photographer in Waterville, Maine 1862 thru circa 1889.

Charles G. Carleton, the photographer for the carte-de-visite in our prior post, was born in Whitefield, New Hampshire, about 1835. He had come to Waterville at least by the time the 1860 Federal Census was taken, when his occupation was listed as “dealer of books.” He established himself as a photographer in 1862 and practiced his art for a living until approximately 1889. He was well-respected in the community and said to have been one of the top photographers in the state. After 1889 we find city directory records from 1892 under the occupation of auctioneer/merchant. Examples of his photography can be found in carte-de-visite, cabinet card and stereograph format. Conflicting death dates show 1891 (Maine death record) and 1895 (gravestone marker).

Charles married Mary C. Getchell (maiden name per Ancestry.com trees) sometime after the 1860 but before the 1870 Federal Census was taken for Waterville.

Below, an ad appearing in the 1885 city directory for Waterville showing his studio address of 66 Main St.

Below, a clipping from the Bangor Daily Whig and Courier, April 14, 1891.

The last photography-type listing found online for Charles G. Carleton is from 1889. In 1892 we find him listed under the occupation of commercial merchant and auctioneer and in business with James B. Dinsmore. So, it seems sometime between 1889 and 1892 (if the 1895 death date is correct) he may have left the photography business. (Note the typo on the middle initial for Charles in the Carleton & Dinsmore line.)

Charles G. Carleton died either July 2, 1891 or 1895. The 1891 date comes from the Maine death record, along with parents’ names Willard Carleton, born in Whitefield (NH) and Clarissa Smith[?] born in Massachusetts.The 1895 date appears on his gravestone. One would think the death record would be the correct date, however, it is possible that the 1891 date had been recorded late and incorrectly, in light of the 1892 listing for him as a merchant in Waterville, and also since his name appears on another reference as one of the City Officers for the Oversears of the Poor, in 1894. Or, if the 1891 date is correct, the ’92 city directory mistakenly left off that he was deceased, and the city officer ’94 reference (not published till 1908) would have mistakenly left his name in as if still current at that time.

From the Boston Globe, September 22, 1899; wife Mary C. Carleton appears to have taken over the merchant business after Charles died. (By the 1900 census, Mary is not working and is living with her sister, Ellen.)

Sources:  Year: 1860; Census Place: Waterville, Kennebec, Maine; Roll: M653_440; Page: 813; Family History Library Film: 803440. (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1870; Census Place: Waterville, Kennebec, Maine; Roll: M593_547; Page: 571A; Family History Library Film: 552046. (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1880; Census Place: Waterville, Kennebec, Maine; Roll: 482; Page: 485A; Enumeration District: 108. (Ancestry.com).

Ancestry.com trees. (accessed December 10, 2019).

F. H. Greenough & Co.’s Greenough’s Directory…Towns of Waterville, Oakland & Fairfield for 1885. p. 30. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

Leading Businessmen of Lewiston, Augusta and Vicinity. Boston:  Mercantile Publishing Company, 1889. p. 209. (Google.com books).

Bangor Daily Whig and Courier. April 14, 1891, Tuesday, p. 1. (Newspapers.com).

Maine State Archives; Cultural Building, 84 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0084; 1892-1907 Vital Records; Roll Number: 9. (Ancestry.com).

Bangor Daily Whig and Courier. April 15, 1895, Monday, p. 1. (Newspapers.com).

Littlefield Directory Publishing Co’s The Augusta, Hallowell, Gardiner and Kennebec County Directory, 1892-1893, p. 781. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 9 December 2019), memorial page for Charles G. Carleton (1835–1895), Find A Grave Memorial no. 161471228, citing Pine Grove Cemetery, Waterville, Kennebec County, Maine, USA ; Maintained by ForgetMeNot (contributor 48495444) .
“Disastrous Fire At Waterville.” Boston Globe. September 22, 1899. Friday, p. 3. (Newspapers.com).
Year: 1900; Census Place: Waterville, Kennebec, Maine; Page: 31; Enumeration District: 0133; FHL microfilm: 1240594. (Ancestry.com).
The Charter and Revised Ordinances of the City of Waterville. “City Officers – Oversears of the Poor.” Waterville, Maine:  Central Maine Publishing Co, 1908.

Eugene E. Flack, Photographer

Eugene E. Flack, photographer in New York state circa 1898 – 1915.

Above, an ad from the Watertown, New York city directory in 1902.

Some brief information regarding E. E. Flack, the photographer who took the photo in our prior post:

Eugene Edward Flack was born November 18, 1872 or 1873 in Ogdensburg, New York to Elbert Homer Flack and Josephine Frances Pearce. He may have started in the photography business in his home town; the earliest city directory found online is for that city in 1898, where he is listed as boarding at 65 Morris.

By at least 1902 he had moved his photography business to Watertown, NY, residing there with his wife Harriet (Lockwood) whom he had married in April 24, 1895, and daughter, Mary who was born in 1896. The 1902 directory shows business and residence as 15 Washington. The 1905 State Census only lists his home address (though business and home could have been the same) that of 75 Franklin St.

In 1909 Eugene, Harriet and Mary moved about thirty miles north from Watertown to the small village of Alexandria Bay, on the St. Lawrence River. The Federal 1910 census shows the family living at 192 Walton St.

According to Ancestry.com family trees Eugene and Harriet appear to have divorced, and he later remarried (Mary McAfee).  The 1915 New York State Census shows he is boarding at the St. Lawrence Hotel, Alexandria Bay, and his 1918 WWI Draft Registration shows he is living in Norristown, Pennsylvania with nearest relative given as his mother, Mrs. Josephine Flack of Montgomery St., Ogdensburg, New York. Occupation for Eugene on the draft registration is clerk. The 1920 Federal Census was not found, however there is a 1930 census showing a Eugene E. Flack, photographer, and wife Mary living in Orange, New Jersey that’s a possible fit.

Eugene died in Watertown, New York, May 17, 1948.

Sources:  C. A. Williams’ 1898-1899 Ogdensburg City Directory, p. 169. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

Kimball’s Watertown City Directory for 1902, pp. 106-107. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

Kimball Directory Publishing Co.’s Watertown City Directory for 1909, p. 136. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

New York State Department of Health; Albany, NY, USA; New York State Marriage Index. (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1910; Census Place: Alexandria Bay, Jefferson, New York; Roll: T624_953; Page: 9B; Enumeration District: 0004; FHL microfilm: 1374966. (Ancestry.com).

New York State Archives; Albany, New York; State Population Census Schedules, 1915; Election District: 04; Assembly District: 02; City: Alexandria; County: Jefferson; Page: 03. (Ancestry.com).

Registration State: Pennsylvania; Registration County: Montgomery; Roll: 1907347; Draft Board: 1. (Ancestry.com).

Year: 1930; Census Place: Orange, Essex, New Jersey; Page: 6B; Enumeration District: 0570; FHL microfilm: 2341078. (Ancestry.com).

Ancestry.com trees. Accessed December 7, 2019.

New York Department of Health; Albany, NY; NY State Death Index. (Ancestry.com).

Truck Drivin’ Men

Old photo, circa 1920s, white border.

Price:  $4.00          Size:  About 3 and 5/16 x 2 and 3/8″

We’re continuing our day-late Father’s Day theme with a nice old photo, which we’re guessing is from the ’20s, but we’ll find out – according to whatever make, model and year the truck turns out to be. The two gents here are maybe a dad with his young son of about three, standing next to their vehicle, on the dirt shoulder of a tree-lined road.

The next thing in binoculars….

So, it looks like there’s writing on the inside of the truck, under the passenger side rear window, but we can’t quite read it. And further scrutiny yields another “arrggh” moment, in trying to make out the words on the sign posted on the tree trunk to our left. (Actually you probably noticed the tree sign first, but whatev 😉 ) If you stare at these kind of things long enough you sometimes get a flash of insight into what they say. Those ah-ha! moments are soooo great. Though, I like the process of imagining (the journey is it’s own reward, right?) having a pair of binoculars that works on old photos:  Just look through, adjust the dial, et voila!

Władysław Jakubowski, Detroit Photographer

Władysław Jakubowski, Detroit photographer 1911 – 1920. Studio address:  1525 Michigan Avenue, Detroit, Michigan. Partners with Władimer Lityński 1912 – 1916.

From the photographer’s 1920 passport application, Władysław, wife Wanda, and daughter Sophie.

The photographer for the prior post, Władysław L. Jakubowski, was born July 12th or 22nd (22nd from his WWII Draft Registration), 1883 in Filipów, Suwałki County, northeastern Poland, son of Vitalis Jakubowski and Anna Szpakouska[?] He emigrated to the U.S. in 1903 and became a naturalized citizen in 1911. He married Wanda Gudowski (Kudowska on marriage record) in Detroit on August 25, 1915. By the 1920 Federal Census they had a daughter, Sophie. Jumping ahead to 1940, we find Władysław and Wanda in Queens, New York. He’s working as a printing machine operator. With them are son, Marion, born in Poland, about 1923, and daughter Alina, born New York, about 1931. The WWII Draft Registration shows Władysław working at Grand Prospect Hall, 263 Prospect Ave., Brooklyn. To fill in some of the time frame and view more photo examples, see Michigan Polonia, which includes the publication Portrait Studios of Detroit’s Polonia: The Face of Polish Immigration, (pages 26 – 28).

A little more info….

Władysław Jakubowski is shown in several Detroit city directory listings at his studio address of 1525 Michigan Avenue, but the 1912 entry under his partner, Władimer Lityński, gives us a little more information:

Sources:  National Archives and Records Administration (NARA); Washington D.C.; NARA Series: Passport Applications, January 2, 1906 – March 31, 1925; Roll #: 1139; Volume #: Roll 1139 – Certificates: 8626-8999, 03 Apr 1920-05 Apr 1920. Ancestry.com.

R. L. Polk & Co.’s Detroit City Directory, 1911. p. 3324. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

R. L. Polk & Co.’s Detroit City Directory, 1912. pp. 1414 and 1654. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

R. L. Polk & Co.’s Detroit City Directory, 1916. p. 3656. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

Michigan, Marriage Records, 1867–1952. Michigan Department of Community Health, Division for Vital Records and Health Statistics. Ancestry.com.

Year: 1920; Census Place: Detroit Ward 16, Wayne, Michigan; Roll: T625_815; Page: 36B; Enumeration District: 502. Ancestry.com.

Year: 1940; Census Place: New York, Queens, New York; Roll: T627_2723; Page: 10B; Enumeration District: 41-1886. Ancestry.com.

The National Archives at St. Louis; St. Louis, Missouri; Record Group Title: Records of the Selective Service System, 1926-1975; Record Group Number: 147. Ancestry.com.

Grand Prospect Hall. grandprospect.com. Accessed August 1, 2017.

Portrait Studios of Detroit’s Polonia: The Face of Polish Immigration. mipolonia.net. Accessed August 1, 2017.

Burton J. Holcombe, Photographer

Burton J. Holcombe, from our prior post, was born about November 1856 in New York, to James E. Holcombe and Emily J. Shutts. The paper trail is pretty long for Burton, who was a Detroit photographer from at least 1884 to about 1897, then worked as a traveling sales agent from about 1900 to 1904, returning to photography for a couple of years in Detroit before moving back to his home state of New York to continue in the business from about 1910 thru 1930. He married Sophie Orth in 1891, and they had a daughter, Doris. Burton and Sophie divorced in 1905. Photographers Charles E. Alford (Holcombe & Alford) and Edward J. Metzen (Holcombe & Metzen) paired up with Holcombe for short periods of time in the 1880s and 1890s. Below, per online records, a timeline:

1860 – Federal Census, Fowler, Saint Lawrence Co., NY. With parents and siblings Arabel and Edward. Father’s occupation:  merchant.

1870 – Federal Census, Gouverneur, Saint Lawrence Co., NY, with parents, siblings and others. Father is a lumber merchant.

1884 – Holcombe & Alford, 222 Woodward Ave., Detroit, MI, boards Finney House. H.L. Holcombe is also listed as a photographer, boarding at Finney House.

1885 – Holcombe & Alford, 222 Woodward Ave., Detroit. Residence 444 7th, along with widowed mother, Emily J. Holcombe.

1887 – Burton J. Holcombe, 222 Woodward Ave. Residence 21 Sproat, with mother, Emily.

1888 – Burton J. Holcombe, 222 Woodward Ave. Boards 102 Miami.

1889 – Holcombe & Metzen, 222 Woodward Ave. Residence 102 Miami.

1890 – Holcombe & Metzen, 146 – 148 Woodward Ave. Residence 153 E. Elizabeth.

1891 – Burton J. Holcombe, 222 Woodward Ave. Residence 815 4th Ave., with mother, Emily. Edward Metzen is still down the street at 146 – 148 Woodward.

1895 – B. J. Holcombe & Co., 242 Woodward Ave. Boards at the Library Dining Rooms.

1896 – Burton J. Holcombe. Residence 46 E. Montcalm, Detroit.

1897 – Burton J. Holcombe. Residence 157 Myrtle, Detroit.

1898 – Burton J. Holcombe, moved to Chicago.

1900 to 1904 – Traveling “agent” i.e. salesman. Residence 990 Trumbell Ave., Detroit.

1908 to 1909 – Burton Holcombe, photographer. Residence 48 W. Adams.

1910  – Federal Census, Gloversville, Fulton Co., NY. Photographer, own gallery. Living with his sister and her family (Hiram J. and Harriet M. Anthony and children) and mother, Emily. Residence 15 West St.

1920 – Federal Census, Rochester, Monroe Co., NY. Photographer, own gallery. Boarding with the Smith family. Residence S. Clinton Ave.

1930 – Federal Census, Gloversville, Fulton Co., NY. Photographer. Lodger at 18 Littauer Place.

1931 – 18 Littauer Place. Gloversville, Fulton Co., NY. No occupation listed.


Sources:  Year: 1860; Census Place: Fowler, Saint Lawrence, New York; Roll: M653_853; Page: 648; Image: 117; Family History Library Film: 803853. (Ancestry.com)

Year: 1870; Census Place: Gouverneur, Saint Lawrence, New York; Roll: M593_1097; Page: 252B; Image: 252977; Family History Library Film: 552596. (Ancestry.com)

J. W. Weeks & Co.’s Detroit City Directories, 1884, p. 642; 1885, p. 596. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

R. L. Polk & Co.’s Detroit City Directories, 1887 p. 730; 1888 p. 702; 1889 p. 705; 1890 p. 600; 1891 p. 582; 1895 p. 698; 1896 p. 721; 1897 p. 727; 1898 p. 751; 1900 p. 795; 1901 p. 814; 1903 p. 1162; 1904 p. 1361; 1908 p. 3130. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.

Marriage Records. Michigan Marriages. FamilySearch, Salt Lake City, UT.  Ancestry.com. Michigan, County Marriages, 1822-1940. (Ancestry.com)

Year: 1900; Census Place: Detroit Ward 8, Wayne, Michigan; Roll: 750; Page: 15B; Enumeration District: 0087; FHL microfilm: 1240750. (Ancestry.com)

Michigan. Divorce records. Michigan Department of Community Health, Division for Vital Records and Health Statistics, Lansing, Michigan. (Ancestry.com)

R. L. Polk’s Michigan State Gazetteer & Business Directory, 1909-1910. p. 615.

“United States Census, 1910,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M5CL-3K6 : accessed 12 February 2017), Burton J Holcombe in household of Hiram J Anthony, Gloversville Ward 4, Fulton, New York, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 18, sheet 2A, family 42, NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 948; FHL microfilm 1,374,961.

“United States Census, 1920,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MJL1-BL2 : accessed 12 February 2017), Burton J Holcomb in household of Frank W Smith, Rochester Ward 4, Monroe, New York, United States; citing ED 60, sheet 4B, line 71, family 83, NARA microfilm publication T625 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1992), roll 1120; FHL microfilm 1,821,120.

Year: 1930; Census Place: Gloversville, Fulton, New York; Roll: 1439; Page: 3A; Enumeration District: 0014; Image: 819.0; FHL microfilm: 2341174. (Ancestry.com)

H. A. Manning Company’s Gloversville and Johnstown Directory, 1931. p. 168. Ancestry.com. U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995.