Photograph Saved From a Cracker Barrel Wall

These wonderful 16 x 20-inch (framed 20 x 24-inch) photographs were purchased some years ago at Doris’ Auctions on Rutledge Pike. According to the owner, the auctioneer identified them only as a Union County couple. A lovely lady who lives at Corryton made the purchase. It appears from the size and quality of the pictures and frames that the family was well to do. The carved frames with curved glass are unique. It also appears that the lady’s picture is hand-colored. Hand-coloring was the only way to achieve color until colored film came on the market.

I urge everyone who keeps family photographs or any file of photographs to please write names of people and/or places on the back of the picture. I have spent countless hours writing names on the back of pictures, making inquiries about unidentified pictures passed on to me, trying to locate people who might be able to look at and identify pictures, and attempting to help people identify family photographs. Remember a No. 2 pencil is the most permanent marker. Ballpoint ink fades beyond recognition in about fifty years, while a pencil will last hundreds of years on acid-free paper.

I believe there is another story here. And, yes, there is: Mada Perry was able to identify this couple as Preston "Press" and Melvina Russell. The owner of the framed photographs graciously donated them to the Union County Museum. Many thanks to Cheryl Smith of Corryton for saving the photographs and donating them to the Museum.


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