1/23/15

A WEE CART in Scotland


I generally don't post images that are related to my family; I'm a private person. However, the prompt from Sepia Saturday this week was just too easy.

I give you my paternal grandfather in Scotland. I do not know the wee lassie sitting next to him. Perhaps she's family, but I'll never know. I like to imagine it's me sitting there bundled up for a nice ride through the countryside.


Click on image to see it larger.

My grandfather lived a hard life. When he was a teenager he contracted pneumonia and lost the use of one lung. Because of this he did not serve in World War I and my father has always wondered if he was treated badly by others because otherwise he looked to be a very healthy young man. He worked in a steelworks in Scotland before emigrating to California in 1921, first passing through Ellis Island. My grandmother, who had yet to marry, followed in 1922. They lived for the rest of their lives in Northern California. They had one son who is still alive today, my father. A second son died within hours of his birth. The third son, my uncle, died last year.

Of the four grandchildren, I am the only one who knew him. He died before any of my cousins were born. I have few memories of him, but I have rich stories my father has told me.
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26 comments:

  1. What a lovely way to see the countryside. We don't get to see it properly these days in our fast modern cars.

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    1. Especially with the windows tightly sealed and radio blaring.

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  2. That is a wonderful photo to have.

    Memories of grandparents are important as are the stories. I hope that you have recorded them?

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    1. No, just in my mental filing cabinet.

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    2. Please write them down for future generations :)

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  3. Imagining yourself in the photo is fun. I never really heard much about my grandfathers. One died before I was born and the other when I was a few months old.

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    1. I'm sorry for that. I have more memories of my maternal grandparents, but even they became strangers because we lived so far away.

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  4. Well I’m glad that you broke with tradition and posted this charming photo along with your memories.

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  5. A wonderful portrait! I've seen many similar horse and cart photos which I believe were a photograph style meant to commemorate the horse as much as the cart/carriage driver and family. The equivalent to our classic American photo of family with automobile.

    I have a photo of my Irish great great grandfather in his new auto, circa 1910, making the rounds as a Minnesota postman.

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    1. I do wish something had been written on the back of the photo, but nada. In fact I don't even own this shot. I borrowed a box of photos from my uncle a few years ago and scanned everything. For some unknown reason this one did not get scanned at a high resolution.

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  6. A lovely image and I enjoyed reading your fond profile of your grandfather.

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    1. Thank you. My favorite memory of him is standing along the white picket fence at their house with him telling a neighbor that his granddaughter (me) could whip this other fella's grandson.

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    2. What fun! Well done, you tomgirl. I was a tomgirl/tomboy, too, but I doubt either of my parents or grandparents would have boasted that I could whip anyone. (But I could have!)

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    3. I have only decked two people, both of them children when I was a child. One had purposely slammed my fingers in a door. I turned around and knocked him down the stairs. He didn't try crossing me again. I might have only been 5, but I wasn't taking guff from anyone.

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  7. A great photograph. Would you have been old enough when your grandfather died to have been his little riding companion?

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    1. Heavens no. I was around 4 when he died. My dad hadn't even been born when this shot was taken. My grandfather must have been in his twenties when this was taken.

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  8. I hope that was you ready to go for a ride.

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  9. If your grandfather had been a steelworker in World War 1, he would probably have been exempt from military service as an employee of an essential war industry. I was born in 1955 in western Pennsylvania, and growing up, I knew a lot of men who didn't serve in World War 2 because coal miners and steelworkers were protected jobs. More than likely, your grandfather wouldn't have faced any criticism for not being in the army.

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    1. That's interesting to know. Sadly there's nobody left who could tell me.

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  10. I enjoyed the photo and memories of your grandfather.

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  11. Just hope for the best- steel was an important metal for war materials so others were grateful that he and others did their job. My grandfather whom I never knew served. He died at age 40, leaving 7 children. The stories my mom told me made me wish I'd known him. But I was lucky to have a grandfather since my grandmother married again.

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  12. Even without knowing who his little companion was, this is a great photo to have of your grandfather. It seems that at some times and in some places it was common to photograph driver with horse and carriage.

    Do you have children or are there any descendants anywhere who would like to know your memories or the stories your father told of your grandfather? Write them down. He deserves to be remembered on paper (or computer)!

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  13. It's a fine photograph and a fine write-up. So many from our family made that journey across the Atlantic in the early years of last century to a new life. So brave.

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  14. I really like to see the buggy being pulled by horses. Some movies still use them to set the scene of the era.

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