Sepia Saturday #320: The “Mower” I See of You

SepiaSaturday-1-320SepiaSaturday-2-320

This Valentine’s Day card was given to my Aunt Sadie by her Uncle Art and his wife Margaret. A little girl is dressed very neatly to mow her lawn. Moving the heart near her leg makes a little boy pop up from the hose trolley in the back. He has flowers for her. The little girl is the one doing the mowing (a non-traditional activity for the times, 1940s) and the card maker has used the “mower” to cleverly tie in the Valentine’s day poem.

It’s been eerie how some of these Sepia Saturday photo prompts are tying in perfectly with the cards from Aunt Sadie’s Shirley Temple Scrapbook and the family photos I have.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Ora Simpson Strait

Here is a photo of Ora Simpson Strait who is Sadie’s grandfather. Ora passed away in 1918, long before Sadie was born. He’s got the same sort of manual lawn mower that the card depicts. This photo was probably taken around 1910, most likely on Pine or Sussex Streets in Newton, Sussex County, New Jersey. Ora had a cigar hanging jauntily out of the side on his mouth. He was wearing a light-colored tie which does seem just a little formal for mowing the lawn. He was moving, away from the trellis that runs along the property line, towards the photographer.

I have another photo of him standing along the same fence line looking puzzled. He was scratching his head with his hat in his hand. He’s wearing a light shirt and a pair of
suspenders. I wonder what he’s thinking. Could it be “this grass needs cutting” or “do I really have to drag the mower out?” Ora and Audrey’s house at 44 Pine Street can be seen in the background. SCAN0297Audrey has hung up some pieces of laundry on the back porch.

Ora passed away in September 1918 at the age of 39 from carcinoma of the liver.[1] Ora’s address of 49 Condit Street, Newton, Sussex County, New Jersey, on his death certificate was where Audrey and he were living at the time, most likely with Audrey’s mother Hannah Jane who had just lost her husband (Ora’s father-in-law) in February of 1918.[2]  After all the dust had settled with the deaths in the family, Audrey went back to live at 44 Pine Street and was there for many years.[3]

The concept behind these weekly Saturday posts can be found at Sepia Saturday Intro.
Theme taken from Sepia Saturday photo: Working Wheels

Screen Shot 2015-12-28 at 4.40.17 PM


[1] New Jersey, Department of Health, Death Certificate, death certificate no. 593 (penned), Ora S. Strait (1918); Copy with Jodi Lynn Strait, Tucson.
[2] William H. Hunt (Pvt., Co. I, 70th NY. Inf., Civil War), pension no. W.C. 852,451; Civil War and Later Pension Files; Department of Veterans Affairs, Record Group 15; National Archives, Washington, D.C.
[3] R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1929-30 (New York: R.L. Polk & Co., 1929), 76.; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton Directory 1933-34 (New Jersey: R.L. Polk & Co., 1933), 90; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1935-36 (New York: R.L. Polk & Co., 1935), 90; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1938-39 (New York: R.L. Polk & Co., 1938), 95; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1942-43 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1942), 92; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1954 (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: R.L. Polk & Co., 1954), 140; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1955-56 (New York: R.L. Polk & Co., 1955), no page number; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1957 (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: R.L. Polk & Co., 1957), 108; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1959 (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania: R.L. Polk & Co., 1959), 76; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1961 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1961), 103; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1963 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1963), 106; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1964 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1964), 107; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1965 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1965), 134; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1967 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1967), 105; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1968 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1968), 100; R. L. Polk, compiler, Polk’s Newton (Sussex County, N.J.) City Directory 1969 (Boston: R.L. Polk & Co., 1969), 88.

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “Sepia Saturday #320: The “Mower” I See of You

  1. How interesting to find the mower Valentine card and then the mowing photographs. I love the old photographs that show an individual with lots of background to see — like the house and the clothes on the line on the porch. I have too few of those in my photo collection!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s