The prompt image for this week’s Sepia Saturday was a little difficult for me – I really have nothing quite like it, so I’m reducing it to the super basic idea of two women in a photograph. Well, I have lots of those! This photo has a label on the back and identifies someone I haven’t been able to sort out yet. The back has a date, August 5, 1936, and then underneath in the shaky handwriting indicative of my great grandma’s older years, it says, “Mother & Aunt Poll Creber from Canada.” Mother would be Jessie (Battin) Powis, but I’m not sure about Poll Creber! I know Jessie’s sister, Mary Jane Battin, married John Samuel Creber in England and then went to Canada, but none of her kids are named Poll or Polly, and none of John’s siblings are named Poll or Polly or married a woman by that name. There’s another photo of the same two people in a larger group apparently taken at the same time, and if I were a betting woman, I say that the “Poll” here is probably Mary Jane and Olga, as an older woman, couldn’t quite remember the details. I checked the border crossing database on ancestry.com and didn’t see the family there. If they visited and arrived by car, they wouldn’t have been recorded at the border crossing in the 1930s unfortunately – it was just arrivals by sea or train. But, based on the other photo, I think I can be pretty sure this is Mary Jane, and perhaps she went by the nickname Poll or Polly, but I hadn’t seen reference to that nickname until now. So, I think I might have sorted out this little mystery today!
Makes sense that Polly was her nickname. How nice that the sisters had a visit at that age and how satisfying that you sorted it all out.
I had to look it up, but I didn’t even know Polly was a nickname for Mary!
Sorting out mysteries is always satisfying. I hope you’re right. 🙂
I do love a mystery photograph. I love it even more when the little clues finally lead to a resolution.
Nothing better than a family mystery until you find out it should have stayed a mystery.
I would disagree with this. We had a discussion on another genealogy board and the argument was pretty well split, 50/50, but I feel like a mystery should always be worked out, even if the outcome isn’t something positive. I feel that it’s far better to know the truth than speculate on what-if’s.