Friday, August 22, 2014

Sepia Saturday: Who is in the window?

The theme photo for this week's Sepia Saturday features fans, national costume, hidden meanings.


I've used the perfect photo that matches the theme in a previous post so instead I'm posting a photo of a wedding group. In it there are two ladies with lacy hats, hiding in the background. They are the mothers of the bride and groom.

Wedding group at Balmattum, 1897 - Margaret McKernan and Daniel Phelan
The mothers, Jane Phelan and Christina McKernan
I've already written a more detailed blog about this particular wedding of my husband's great-grandparents here and in it I posted a more formal photo of the wedding party. For the purposes of this week's theme I'll repost that photo now.

William Phelan and Margaret McKernan with her parents (Daniel and Christina)
at left and his parents (Daniel and Jane) at right.
So I'm trying to imagine the sequence of events. Did the photographer first line up the bridal party and parents for a formal photo? And did he then invite other guests to gather round for the more informal photo? If so, why did the two mothers disappear inside the house and look out the window? (The photos were taken at the bride's home.) Did the photographer instruct them to stand there? If so, why didn't he make sure the groom's father was in the photo as well as the bride's father? Were there two different photographers? A little mystery that will never be solved.


13 comments:

  1. I have not found any formal weddings among my ancestors, so I'm always fascinated by old wedding photos. Repeat them as often as you like. This one is especially grand -- must have been a beautiful event. I wonder if there are photos of the cake and punch.

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  2. Maybe the grooms father took the photo.

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  3. Maybe the parents of the bride & groom weren't supposed to be in the extended family & friends picture, but the two mothers decided to sneak in it anyway? :)) That one poor bridesmaid looks like she's about ready to expire in her high-necked gown in both pictures. Really nice photos!

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  4. Perhaps the mothers went inside to set up the wedding reception? I just learned recently that my parents' reception was held in my grandparents' house.

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  5. I like the informal one best. It has what may be all the wedding guests depicted. And the mothers peeking out the window is charming. But who is that child with them?

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  6. The mothers don't look very happy. I am with Jackie, maybe they were inside preparing and were interrupted; too busy to come out for photos?

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  7. Like Jackie, my first thought was that they had gone inside to supervise the food. Thinking about it, early photos were quite formal and posed so I don't think there would be many example of photobombing like those two mothers managed to do.

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  8. Looks like a big wedding. Is there a report on Trove?

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  9. These days wedding photographs seem to be carried out to a strict formula - they were at the recent wedding of my son at least. It is nice to have a bit of variation - and a bit of a mystery for future generations to talk about.

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  10. Several chuckles from your post, and your commentators. Thanks!

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  11. This is a case for our Sepian Sleuth, Brett Payne. I like Kristin's idea that the groom's father snap the shutter.

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  12. Oh dear the mothers look quite grumpy. I love all the speculating going on about the reasons for the arrangement.

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  13. Strangely the woman on the right in the window doesn't even look like she was really there. She almost appears to have been cut and pasted in later. Perhaps she wasn't actually there at all. A good mystery to think about.

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I love to read your comments. Thankyou for your interest.

Lorraine