Ethel Wight Collection – Part 5

Austin, Axelsen, Axelsen, Baird, & Baker

Photo Friday
By Don Taylor

Photo of Don Taylor with cat Nasi.This week for Photo Friday, I look at identifying more negatives from the Ethel Wight Studio Collection[i]. The names on the envelope are of the individual who paid for the photos, not necessarily of the individual portrayed in the image. As such, it is important to analyze the picture and information to identify the photographs positively.[ii]

Not William L. Austin

Unknown – Probably Not William L. Austin

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mr. William L Austin – 44 Brown St. Portland – #724.”

William Austin does not appear in the 1934 or 1935 Portland City Directories.

The 1936 Portland City Directory indicated William Austin was the householder at 53 Franklin, Apartment 9. Likewise, the 1937 City Directory shows William at 53 Franklin, Apt 9.

The 1938 Portland City Directory indicates William Auston residing at 7 Tolman Place.

The 1940 Census indicates William L Austin living at 7 Tolman Place as a widowed lodger. He was 75 years old.

If the photo were taken about 1935, as the other pictures in this collection were, then William L. Austin would have been about 70 years old. The man in this photo is definitely not near 70 and appears, to me, to be about 50.

So, I have no idea who this person is.  Although the photo was paid for by William L Austin, I do not believe it is of him.

Alfred J. Axelsen

Alfred J. Axelsen circa 1936

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mr. Alfred J Axelsen – 45 Randall Ave, Portland #252”.

The 1935 Portland City Directory indicates Alfred J Axelsen was a painter employed at 228 Sherwood and resided at 45 Randall, which confirms his identity.

The 1930 Census enumerates Alfred J. Axelsen living with his Father Jens Axelsen, apparent mother Maren, and a sister, Laura.

Further research indicated that Alfred Julius Axelsen was born on 8 October 1908, married Margaret Winslow in 1933, and died 5 November 1983. I am confident this photo is of him.

This individual has a profile on FamilySearch, ID GQW1-GCV; I posted two photos of Alfred there.

Mildred Christine (Weston) Axelsen

Mildred Christine (Weston) Axelsen ca. 1937

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mrs. A. M. Axelson – 237 Sherwood Street, Portland #1054.”

The 1937 Portland City Directory is somewhat confusing. It indicates, in part:

  • Axelsen, Alfred J painter 237 Sherwood r 45 Randall
  • August M (Mildred C) painter 1754 Wash av h do
  • August M (Caroline E) mold maker 54 York h 43 Dorset
  • —Niels jr r 237 Sherwood

The 1940 Census places August M. Axelson and his 40-year-old wife, Mildred, at 45 Randall St. It also places August M. Axelson, and his 49-year-old wife, Caroline, at 43 Dorset Street.

The 1930 Census places August M Axelson living at 237 Sherwood Street with his wife, Mildred. August M. Axelson and his wife Caroline are residing at 43 Dorset Street.

So, it is clear Mrs. A. M. Axelsen is Mildred. Mildred was born about 1899, so she would have been about 36 in 1935. The woman in the photo appears to be about that age, so I believe this to be Mildred C. Axelson.

Mildred Christine Weston married August Mienerdt Axelsen on 1 June 1927.

Mildred has a profile on FamilySearch, ID L2JB-L79, and I have uploaded my photos there.

Elsie (McLeon) Baird

Elsie (McLeon) Baird, circa 1936

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mrs. Elsie Baird – 20 Vesper St, Portland #656.”

The 1937 Portland City Directory indicates that Elsie M. Baird was the widow of John H. Baird and lived at 20 Vesper.

Further research indicated that Elsie M Baird (nee McLeon) was born about 1887 in Scotland. She had a daughter, also named Elsie, who was born in 1910. If the photo were taken about 1935, as many of the pictures have been taken, Elsie the mother would have been about 48, and Elsie, the daughter, would have been about 25 years old. The woman in these photos appears to be in her 40s, so I believe it is Elsie, the mother.

Elsie does not appear to have a profile on Family Search; however, she does have a memorial on Find-a-Grave. I uploaded copies of the images to Elsie McLeod Baird – Memorial 152470097.

Eleanor Baker

(Or possibly Beatrice E. Baker)

Possibly Eleanor Baker, possibly Beatrice E. Baker.

This negative envelope says, “Miss Eleanor Baker – 130 Highland St Portland #986.“

The Portland City Directory for 1936 shows an Eleanor residing at John Decker Ocean House Rd, CE, p o SP

Eleanor does not appear in the 1935 Portland City Directory; however, a Beatrice E. Baker does appear living at 130 Highland in the Directory. The Directory suggests a family consisting of:

  • Beatrice E. Baker, Stenographer at 289 Forest Ave. Residing rear of 130 Highland.
  • Elmer S. (Ruby A) Painter emp 362 Cumberland av householder 130 Highland.
  • Harold F (Florence V) Carpenter householder rear 130 Highland.

Beatrice E. Baker married Wilton J. Rosenblad on 23 August 1935, explaining why she doesn’t appear in any subsequent city directories.

A review of many individual trees revealed no individuals name Eleanor in the families. That aside, I believe that “Eleanor Baker” of the photo is Beatrice E Baker, born 12 May 1913. The image had to have been taken before 23 August 1935, so her age in the picture had to be about 22 years old.

Beatrice E Baker is in 9 public trees on Ancestry.Com and if any of them know of Beatrice’s middle name or can identify her in the photo, I will have confirmed her identity.

Final Note

If any of these photos are of a family member or clarify my identification, I would love to hear from you.

There are additional photos on my Flickr Site. See https://www.flickr.com/photos/dontaylor50/albums/72157716308896207

 


Endnotes

[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. Individuals may use these photos in their genealogical endeavors.

Ethel Wight Collection – Part 4

Appleton, Armstrong, Ames, August, and a crashed car.

Photo Friday
By Don Taylor

This week for Photo Friday, I identify five more envelopes of negatives from the Ethel Wight Studio Collection[i]. The images were converted to positives using a lightbox, a Nikon camera, and Adobe Photoshop Essentials.

Gail Appleton – ca. 1937.

Miss Gail Appleton

The envelope this negative was in says, “Miss Gail Appleton – State Street Hospital – #662.

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1934, indicates Gail Appleton residing at 166 Kelsey, South Portland.

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1935 indicates Gail Appleton is a student nurse at 62 State, Residence 52 State.

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1937 indicates Gail Appleton is a student nurse at 62 State, Residence 52 State.

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1938, indicates Gail Appleton is a nurse employed at 1151 Brighton Av and a nurse at 166 Kelsey, South Portland, and is residing at 166 Kelsey, South Portland.

These types of photos were typically taken about graduation, so I place the photo as circa 1937.

From these records and the 1930 and 1940 Census records, I’m sure this is Gail Appleton, Born 22 July 1915 in Augusta, Kennebec County, Maine, to Maurice Dwinell and Annie Belle (Grady) Appleton. On Family Search, she is ID: GM5T-D6P.

Mona Armstrong

Miss Mona Armstrong

This photo is from the Ethel Wight Studio Collection. The envelope this negative was in says, “Miss Mona Armstrong – Nse. Gen Hospital.

Mona Armstrong is not listed in the 1934 Portland, Maine, City Directory.

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1935, indicates Mona Armstrong is a student nurse at 22 Arsenal, Residence (ditto).

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1936 indicates Mona Armstrong is a student nurse at 22 Arsenal, Residence (ditto).

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1937 indicates Mona Armstrong is a student nurse at 22 Arsenal, Residence (ditto).

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1938 indicates Mona Armstrong married Carl Matthews. I believe the photo to be circa 1937.

I am confident this is Mona Luella Armstrong (1914-2001), daughter of Orville George and Amber Flora (Rich) Armstrong. She married Carl Eugene Matthews on 24 January 1838. On Family Search, she is ID: G7LK-ZLL

Phillip Ames & Daughter – ca. 1934

Mr. Phil Ames & Daughter

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mr. Phil Ames – 92 Concord St. Portland – #440.

A review of the Portland City Directories found:

  • 1934 Portland, Maine, City Directory, Page 121 – Philip L (Madeline V) prop 12 Monument Square Room G, home 92 Concord.

Which confirms that Philip L lived at 92 Concord. The 1935 directory indicates that Philip and Madeline lived at 27 Crosby, suggesting the photo was taken in 1934.

The 1940 Census indicates that Philip Ames lived at 119 Leland St. with his wife Madeline; Daughter, Donna (age 7); Son, Alan (age 4); and daughter, Dian (Age 8/12). So Donna would have been 1 to 2 years old in 1934, dating the photo to ca. 1934.

No other Philip Ames lived in Portland during this time.

Philip Linwood Ames has a Family Search ID LKZT-11B

Edith August circa 1936

Miss Edith August

The envelope this negative was in says, “Mrs. E. August – 16 Salem St, Portland – #322.

The Portland, Maine, City Directory for 1936 indicates that Adolph J. August and his wife, Edith C. lived at 16 Salem in Portland.

The 1940 Census indicates that Adolph August and his wife Edith were living at 35 Taylor Street. With them is a 9-year-old daughter, Edith, who this appears to be a photograph of.

There is not a profile for Edith August on Family Search. It appears that four trees on Ancestry include Edith in their tree. I will contact them with a link to these photos after it posts to this blog.

No People – Just a Damaged Car

The envelope this negative was in says, “B. Applebaum – 58-60 Howard Ave, Roxbury, MA – #93.

When I first saw this envelope, I thought how odd that a Roxbury person would have their photos taken in Portland. Then I looked at the photo and realized that it was clearly a photo of a car which recently was in an accident and there were a couple of photos of probably the road where the accident occurred.

A sign on the garage where the car is at says Vesta Batteries. To the left of the Car is a sign which reads “RUSCO.” I don’t know my auto makes, so I don’t know what kind of car it is. If you know, I’d be interested in learning the make/model.

Final Note

So, it was a good week. Five photos – five people were identified.


Endnotes

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

Ethel Wight Studio – Part 2

Connie Acito & Two Adams Girls.

Photo Friday
By Don Taylor

This week for Photo Friday, I identify two more negatives from the Ethel Wight Studio Collection[i]. The images were converted to positives using a lightbox, a Nikon camera, and computer software.

Miss Connie Acito

The photo envelope, “Miss Connie Acito – 66 Cumberland Ave. Portland – #256.”  The photo is by “Ethel Wight Studio, Portland, Maine.”

There was a Constantina Acito, born about 1914 in Italy, who lived at 240 Washington Ave., Portland, ME with her parents, Donato and Anna Acito. She had a sister Antoinette Acito.

Constantine F. Acito also appears in the 1943 Portland City Directory, living at 240 Washington Ave.

It would be nice to find Connie on Cumberland Ave sometime in the 1930s to confirm the identification. However, it appears that Constantina’s father, Donato, frequently moved, having lived at several locations during the 1930s.

I have not successfully found any other individual who could be called “Connie Acito” in Maine during the 1930s. So, I’m confident this photo is of Constantina F. Acito, daughter of Donato and Anna Acito.

Constantina, Donato, Anna, and Antoinette are not identified in Family Search. However, they do appear as a family unit in the Grant Family Tree on Ancestry.

I added her photo to her memorial on Find-a-Grave.

Children of Mrs. E. B. Adams

The back of this photo says, “Mrs. E. B. Adams – 12 Crosby St Portland – 2 Girls – #888.”  The photo is by the “Ethel Wight Studio.”

The 1939 Portland City Directory shows Earle B. Adams living at 12 Crosby Street in Portland. His wife was Dorothea M. Adams.

Family Search indicates that an Earle Bishop and Dorothea M. (Thompson) Adams had two daughters, Earlene Ann Adams and Mary Ellen Adams, born in 1931 and 1934. The two girls in this photo appear to be about 3 and 5, and the photo was taken about 1936, so I’m confident these are Mary Ellen (younger) and Earlene.

Additional searches found no similar family units.

  • Earlene Ann Adams (1931-2014) – Family Search ID: LBPR-F1G
  • Mary Ellen Adams Coughlan (1934-2014) – Family Search ID: LBPR-5KB

Endnotes

[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.

Ethel Wight Studio – Part 1

Photo Friday
By Don Taylor

I was recently given access to some negatives from the Ethel Wight Studio of Portland, Maine from the 1930s. The photos were identified by the person who paid for the photo, not the person in the photo. So, there is “no guarantee the person in the photo is the same person who paid for the photo.” I’ll add, besides the Studio in Portland, Ethel also had a studio in Old Orchard Beach (Ocean Park) during many of the same years. These two photos probably came from the Portland studio.

I was asked to see what I could do with these photos if I added them to my Photo Identification Project. So, I digitized the negatives and inverted them to positives. I then used the information from the envelopes to determine who the image is most likely to be. As a test, or proof of concept I took a look at two envelopes with three images.

Howard Abildgaard – #667

The envelope says 476 Washington Ave | Portland

The 1930 Census shows Howard P. Abildgaard, son of Emil L and Serine Abildgaard living at 476 Washington Ave.[i] Howard was 18 years old. By the 1940 Census, Paul Howard had married, had a son, and was living at 3 Lennox Street, Portland, ME.[ii] I believe that this photo is of Paul Howard Abildgaard from between 1930 and 1939.

Paul Howard Abildgaard has a Family Search ID of G91G-G6F. I have uploaded the photo to his profile.​​

Margaret Ackerson – #742

The envelope says State St. Hospital | Portland

I was unable to find Margaret Ackerson in Portland, Maine during the 1930 or 1940 Censuses. However, I did find Margaret in the 1936 Portland City directory. She was a student nurse at 62 State and had a residence of 52 State, about two blocks from Mercy Hospital.

Further research found Margaret Ackerson, age 30 living in Bronx, New York during the 1940 Census. She was a Nurse living at a “Nurse’s Home” on Lafayette Avenue. She had lived in Cumberland, Maine in 1935 and had been born in Maine.[iii]

However, further research was not successful in determining Margaret’s parents with certainty. As such, I was not able to positively her. Items I believe I know:

  • Name: Margaret Ackerson
  • 1910 – Born in Maine ?
  • 1935 – Attended Nurse’s school in Portland, Cumberland County, Maine.
  • 1940 – Worked as a nurse 60 hours a week at Hunt’s Point Hospital, and boarded at 1325 Lafayette Ave.

I have added her photos to Dead Fred.

Dig Up Your Relatives at DeadFred.com - The Original Genealogy Photo Archive

Final Note

Many thanks to Ethel Wight’s family for access to and permission to use the collection of their great aunt.


ENDNOTES

[i]  “United States Census, 1930,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:XM8P-12Q : accessed 8 October 2020), Howard P Abildgaard in household of Emil L Abildgaard, Portland, Cumberland, Maine, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 85, sheet 8B, line 62, family 187, NARA microfilm publication T626 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2002), roll 831; FHL microfilm 2,340,566.

[ii] United States Census, 1940,” database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:KMMC-RR1 : 28 February 2020), Paul H Abildgaard, Ward 9, Portland, Portland City, Cumberland, Maine, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) 3-117, sheet 8A, line 30, family 161, Sixteenth Census of the United States, 1940, NARA digital publication T627. Records of the Bureau of the Census, 1790 – 2007, RG 29. Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2012, roll 1476.

[iii] Ancestry.com. 1940 United States Federal Census [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Ancestry.com Operations, Inc., 2012. Census Place: New York, Bronx, New York; Roll: m-t0627-02477; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 3-643

 

Four Women and a Baby Identified

Photo Friday
By Don Taylor

This week, for Photo Friday, I’m reviewing four photos, one child, two women photos, and one small photo with two women in it.

Photos of 4 women and a baby.
Carrie & Lillie Johnson, Kenneth F. Bartlett, Evelyn Ardelia Bragdon, & Elsie Bragdon

Mrs. Carrie Johnson & Daughter Lillie.

This photo kind of has two backs. There is the original small 2-3/4” x 2” black & white (pictured above). Also, there is a blue-tinted printed copy of that same photo but only has the left inch, thus leaving out the daughter. However, the backs of the two are slightly different. One says, “Mrs. Carrie Johnson & daughter Lillie,” the other states, “Carrie Johnson Mrs. R. M. Johnson.”

A search for Carrie Johnson, with a spouse of R. M. and a child named Lillie, immediately found a 1910 Census record with Richard M. Johnson, head of household, Carrie E. Johnson, his wife, and Lillie R. Johnson, as a daughter. In 1910 they lived in Hallowell, Kennebec County, Maine.

  • Carrie E. (Murphy) Johnson – Family Search ID: 9XYH-Z1X.
  • Lillie Richardson Johnson – Family Search ID: G71N-9FJ.

Kenneth F Bartlett

The back of the photo says, “Kenneth F Bartlett.”  The picture is by “Smith Photo Co, 27 Monument Sq., Portland, ME.”

There was a Kenneth F. Bartlett, born in Scarborough, ME, on 30 June 1905, the son of Ferdinand M. and Ruth E. Bartlett.

A review of potential other Kenneth Bartletts did not yield any other candidates.

The child appears to be between ½ to 1-1/2, and the photo style is consistent with approximately 1906. So, I believe this to be Kenneth Bartlett.

Family Search ID L5T6-S3D.

Evelyn Ardelia Bragdon

The back of the photo says, “Evelyn Ardelia Bragdon”  The image is by the “Marshall Studio, Westbrook, ME.”

I have seen photos of Elsie and Evelyn Bragdon previously. A view of Evelyn on Family Search yielded another image of the same picture, so I did not upload my copy of the photo to Family Search.

Family Search ID: LYRK-419.

Elsie Bragdon

The back of the photo says, “Elsie Bragdon – Westbrook High School – 1919.”  The picture is by “Fenley, Portland, Maine.”

A search found that an Elsie L. Bragdon lived in Westbrook during the 1920 Census. I am confident this is the correct person.

Family Search ID: 9F3M-HNW.

Final Note

It is a great day when you can identify all of the individuals in the photos you are reviewing.  I am caught up on my Photo Identification Project, so it will be a while before I research any others.