Top Ten Family Photos

Back in the end of August, I published a couple of Top Ten posts. Today, I’d like to share my most treasured family photos. My parameters for these are the same as for the documents – I am only considering photos taken before my parents’ lifetimes.

They made my Top Ten list because, without the advent of photography, these ancestors would be faceless names in time.

1. My first and second picks are also the oldest photos I have, dating to probably about 1850. Thomas Adams was the son of Loyalist John Adams and, as far as I know, the first of the family to be born in New Brunswick in 1783. He died in Calais, Washington, Maine in July 1859.


2. The second half of the set is Thomas’s wife, Sarah Brawn, also born in New Brunswick, Canada in 1786. She died between 1851 and 1861, probably before her husband. My working theory about her parentage is that she was the daughter of Benjamin Brawn who died before his father, also named Benjamin Brawn, and that Sarah is the unnamed granddaughter, identified as the younger Benjamin’s child, named in her grandfather’s will.


3. Mary Elizabeth Scripture, born 1827 and died in 1866, married to George Rogers Tarbox. This is a tintype photo and it is the only picture of her that I have.


4. This is another tintype, but from a much later time period – 1892 – when they were not that common anymore. Pictured are Michael Scerbak and Anna Murcko at the time of their marriage. What I love most is that their heads have been added to a painting. They were dirt poor immigrants working in Passaic factories and I think that was all they could afford.

Michael Scerbak Wedding

5. The last picture was likely taken around the turn of the 20th century. Anna Elisabetha Jensen aka Johnson was born in 1872 and died in 1916. Anna married Hartwell Thomas Coleman in Calais, Washington, Maine. She is my tie to my Scandinavian roots and the only photo I have of my Danish/Swedish family.

The only surviving photo of my grandmother's mother.

6. Another photo from the turn of the 20th century is the picture of John Henry Stufflebean with all of his sons. The family was living in Noble, Oklahoma by 1905.


7. John Christopher Williams was born in 1848 and died in 1926 In Hopkins County, Texas. This is a group photo of John’s family, probably taken about 1914 or so, as Pearl was born in 1898 and is the young girl standing on the left.


8. Here is Earl Marcus Stufflebean as a young man. He was born in 1893 and this picture was taken before he married Pearl Brasher in 1916.


9. Pearl Brasher is smartly dressed in this formal picture. This might have been taken when she graduated from high school in 1915.


10. Last, but not least, here is a picture of Susannah Douthit Alberty, who was both mother-in-law and stepmother to Dave’s great grandmother, Martha Susannah Alberty, who married Abijah Houston Sturgell. Susannah was born in 1821 and died in 1885 in Newton County, Missouri.


That finishes the list. Please consider sharing your own list of favorite old family photos.

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