Ethel Wight Collection – Part 28

Binnette, Carrier, Casey, Cassidy, & Parsons

Photo Friday
Ethel Wight Collection
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.This week for Photo Friday, I identify the people in five more envelopes from the Ethel Wight Studio Collection[i]. The envelopes contain the names who paid for the photos, not necessarily of the individual portrayed in the image. As such, it is vital to analyze the pictures and information to identify the individual therein.[ii] Ultimately, my goal is to reunite the photos with family members who may have never seen the image.

Mildred Flora Elizabeth Cassidy, circa 1937 (age 23)

Mildred Flora Elizabeth Cassidy, circa 1937 (age 23)

The envelope this negative was in says, “Miss Mildred Cassidy, State St. Hospital, Portland #941 – DSCN2855.”

I found:

  • Mildred Cassidy appears in the 1937 Portland City Directory as a student nurse at 62 State and living at 52 State.
  • Mildred Cassidy appears in the 1940 Census as a practical nurse living at 120 Spring St. She is 26, born in Canada.
  • According to her naturalization “Declaration of Intention,” Mildred Flora Elizabeth Cassidy, was born 6 Jan 1914 in Newcastle, New Brunswick.

Family Search did not have a profile for Mildred Cassidy, so I created ZWQ-21R and uploaded a photo of her to that profile. She also is found in 10 Ancestry Trees.

Lawrence Edgar Casey, c. 1934 (Age 16)

Lawrence Edgar Casey, c. 1934 (Age 16)

The envelope this negative was in says, Mr. Lawrence Cassey, 8 Wescott St, Portland #226.”

  • My initial search yielded no results. Searching for anyone living at 8 Wescott in Portland, I found that Mrs. Margaret A. Casey lived at 8 Wescott in 1935.
  • The 1934 Portland High School Yearbook, shows Lawrence Edgar Casey’s photograph which is identical to one of the photos in this collection.
  • S. Social Security Applications and Claims Index, 1936-2007 reports Edgar Lawrence Casey was born 7 July 1917 in Falmouth, Cumberland County, Maine to Edgar L and Margaret A. (Ward) Casey. He died 7 October 1988.

Family Search has a profile for Edgar Lawrence Casey as KZZP-611. I uploaded two photos of Lawrence to his Family Search profile. Edgar Lawrence Casey is found in 27 Ancestry Public Trees. I also uploaded three more photos of Lawrence to my Flickr Photostream.

Richard Earl Parsons, c. 1936 (age 3)

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mrs Fred A Carsons – 930 Forest Ave, Portland #723.”

  • Richard Earl Parsons, circa 1936 (age 3)

    My search for Fred Carsons was unsuccessful. Luckily, Ancestry allows searching City Directories based upon Address only. That search found Fred A., and Katherine M. Parsons living at 930 Forest Ave in the 1935 Portland City Directory.

  • The 1940 Census found Fred living with his wife and five children, four boys, ages 17, 17, 15, and Richard, age 8. This photo was taken about 1936, so it must be two-year-old Richard as the child is too young any of the other boys.

Family Search has a profile for Richard Parsons as LBSD-L6W. I uploaded one photo to that profile. He is also in nine Ancestry Family trees.

Leo Carrier, ca. 1936 (Age 2)

Leo Carrier, ca. 1936 (Age 2)

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mrs. Leo Carrier, 86 Sudig St., Portland #716.”

Sometimes I’m reminded that everyone makes mistakes. In the case of “Mrs. Leo Carrier” I learned that the person was actually Mrs. Romeo Carrier and the child in the photo is Leo Carrier. I also learned that India can look like Sudig (or Dudig). It was a frustrating search but I got there eventually.

My search for Carrier and the number 86 in the Portland City directories yielded Romer and Antoinette Carrier living at 86 India.

There does not appear to be a profile for Leo or his parents on Family Search. However, Leo P Carrier, born 15 Aug 1934 to Romeo J. and Antoinette Bridget (Spaltro) Carrier is found in 8 Ancestry Family Trees. I have uploaded the photo to Dead Fred.

Beverly Binnette, circa 1934 (Age 1)

Beverly Binnette, c. 1934 (Age 1)

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mrs. Mabel Carpenter – 175 Congress St., Portland #527.”

  • The 1935 Portland City Directory list Mable L. Carpenter as the wife lf L. Thurston Carpenter residing at 1 Haskell in South Portland. Note. The 1934 Directory shows L. Thurston Carpenter but does not mention Mabel.
  • The 1936 Portland City Directory lists a Mrs. Mabel L Carpenter, a waitress at 82 Free who resided at 57 Danforth. There were no Carpenters listed at 175 Congress.
  • The 1937 Portland City Directory lists Mrs. Mabel L. Carpenter, married to Edgar Binette and moved to Saco.
  • The 1940 Census shows Edgar Benette and Mabel living at 7 South Street with their two children, Beverly, age 6 and Patricia, age 2.
  • Based upon the photo number, 527, it was taken about 1934 or 1935, so this must be a photo of Beverly and not Patricia. Further research found that Beverly was born 26 October 1933.
  • Mabel Louise Grace married Joseph Edgar Binette on 28 November 1936, well after Beverly’s birth in 1933. Mabel Louise Grace married Lawrence Thurston Carpenter on 9 November 1934. So this photo was likely taken after that when Beverly was about a year old. Mabel married James I. Dixon on 19 November 1929.

Beverly does not appear to have a profile on Family Search, however, Mabel Louise Grace is ID LYN1-LWK. Because I am not entirely sure who Beverly’s father is (Dixon, Carpenter, or Binette), I did not add a profile for Beverly in Family Search. Regardless of the name Beverly was born with, she clearly grew up with Binnette as her surname.  Mable Louise Grace, wife of Edgar H. Binnette is found in 19 Ancestry Trees.

I have added Beverly Binnette’s photo to Dead Fred.


I had a good week with:

    • Three successful identifications where I could post to Family Search
    • Two successful identifications where I needed to post the image to Dead Fred.

Final Note

If any of these photos are of your family member, I would love to hear your reaction. Especially if this photo is of a loved one for whom you hadn’t seen this photograph before.


[i] The Wight Studio was in Portland, Maine. Many thanks to Ethel Wight’s family for access to and permission to use the collection of their great aunt.

[ii] These images were converted to positives using a lightbox, a Nikon camera and computer software.

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