Tag: <span>kitko</span>

Sepia Saturday 304


Bringing back the ghost of a Sepia Saturday past for this week!  For Sepia Saturday 234, I went over a visit my great grandma Olga (Powis) Kitko had with a childhood friend, Mildred Witherow, in Michigan.  The theme image was “Spirit Photography” and while I don’t believe in ghosts or anything supernatural, I have this great photo above with a double exposure that ties in nicely since “Spirit Photography” was actually just deliberate double exposures whether it happened on the negatives themselves or during the printing process.

Anyway, I think it’s neat that my great grandma kept this photo since so many double exposures were discarded as mistakes.  You can see Mildred on the far left, and Olga is sitting next to her in the glasses.  I believe the man just to Olga’s left in the back left corner of the table is Alvin Witherow.  They’re clearly having a nice dinner together, there are smiles and you can almost hear the laughter.  Olga is the only one looking at the camera, so I have to guess that she handed her camera to someone to take a photo but no one else was looking at the photographer!  I think it makes for a neat image overall, even with the inadvertent double exposure.  The photo was developed in September of 1960 and from the other photos it looks like the visit was over the summer, so the film was developed and photos printed, I’d imagine, not long after they were taken.  Olga was born in 1900 so she looks to be about 60 in the photo which helps confirm the date printed on the photo.

Sepia Saturday 287: Groups, Students, Unsmiling Faces


Groups of students with unsmiling faces?  This Sepia Saturday was built for me, I’m sure of it!  One of the things my great grandmother Olga (Powis) Kitko saved over the years were her school photos, and we’ll go through a few of them today.  There are still plenty more though, so this hasn’t exhausted my collection in the least.  She was born in 1900, and in the photo above, she appears to be about age 8 or 9  or so  (third girl from the left in the front row, marked with an x on her sleeve).  There’s no date or marking on the back, but it’s a real photo postcard with an AZO stamp box showing three triangles up and one down which Playle’s guide says is 1911.  Pretty exact, though I would have put my guess a year or two prior.  The school here is probably the Blain City school house across the street from where Olga grew up.

Scan2554This one has no identifying information with it whatsoever – nothing on the back at all and it’s even mounted on a heavy cardboard mat with frame.  Best guess on this one is probably 1912 or 1913.  Olga is third in from the left, front row.  It appears to be the same school steps again as well.


This one is labelled on the back, “8th Grade Kids,” in Olga’s shaky handwriting indicative of her later years.  That would make the date of the photo about 1913-1914 or so depending on when it was taken.  Here Olga is on the left in the front row, standing again on the same steps as the prior two photos.



This is Olga’s High School Graduation photo taken about four years after the prior photo to finish out the set.  In the folder with the photo, she included a list of the students, but it appears to be incomplete.  It’s titled, “BTHS Graduates, 1919,” for Beccaria Township High School and lists these students:

  • Back Row: Covert Hegarty, Dean Gates, Dean Wagner, Hazel Mark, Violet Glass (missing 1 student)
  • Middle Row: Ruth Westover, Don McGeehen, Jim Patterson, Ann Nevling, Stella Holingsworth, Ruth Stewart, Mildred Beaber (all accounted for)
  • Front Row: Olga Powis, Blanch Ginter (all accounted for)

Not all the students have unsmiling faces – some have slight grins, but no full toothy smiles.  It still gives me a smile to see Olga’s life documented out in school photos, and I’m glad these are still around to share!



Sepia Saturday 286: Fish, Museums, United States


This was a toughie.  The Sepia Saturday theme this week is a drawing, not a photo, so it  poses a bit of a challenge, but if I take it as a drawing or doodle, I actually have something that works!  Grandpa Leon Kitko was quite the doodler, and in his sophomore year in high school at Beccaria Township High School (BTHS, which merged to become Beccaria-Coalport-Irvona high school after his sophomore year), he had a bunch of doodles of coal mining machinery.  Having been fascinated with machines and how they work his whole life, and growing up surrounded by them in the coal mining country of central Pennsylvania, it’s no wonder he took to drawing them in his notebook.  From a D-8 Caterpillar bulldozer, work  truck, to a Bay City coal shovel, he covered the more commonly seen pieces of equipment.  The work  truck is even labelled, “George B Lynch, General Cont, Wil, Del,” presumably, Wilmington, Delaware.  I don’t know of anyone by the name George Lynch who was friendly with the family, but he apparently saw the truck often enough to commit the name to memory.

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There are some other things still in the notebook other than blank paper – there’s an assignment for English II dated May 25 and May 10 of 1949, so I have to imagine these doodles date to about the same time.  There’s also what looks to be a final exam schedule along with room numbers, dates, and times.  There’s a page with two addresses that don’t seem to correspond to any family members.  It’s interesting though to see what he jotted down and left behind in the old notebook and it makes me wonder if there’s some old notebook of mine out in a box in the garage with odd notes and addresses scribbled inside!  My high school friends and I had a habit of stealing eachothers books and writing weird notes and sayings all over the school-required brown paper cover, and I’m not sure I can even remember what they were about at this point.  I’d have to imagine that even if Leon was still alive, he might not be able to explain addresses from over 50 years ago!  One last image as this Sepia Saturday draws to a close, the cover of the  tablet including his name, school and grade.


Sepia Saturday 285: Postcards, Hotels, Buildings

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Another “Nailed-It” sort of entry for Sepia Saturday!  Going back to last week’s image, we have two more from the set of photos taken during grandpa Leon Kitko’s senior year of high school.  His senior class took a trip to Washington, D.C., in May of 1951.  Apparently they stayed at the Hotel Harrington, and Leon took a bunch of photos in front of the hotel as they stepped off the bus.  As you can see from the Google Street View image below, the scenery has changed a good bit – the big Hotel Harrington sign along the side of the building is gone, and the only remaining structure to let me know I had the right side of the building is that fire escape ladder.  Going back to the trusty yearbook for the 1951 class at the Beccaria-Coalport-Irvona high school, we have in the left photo above, a gal who looks to be  Cleo Grimes.  In the right photo, well I’m not entirely sure who that is.  I have a hunch that, in the class trip photo at the bottom, the center two people are teachers, possibly Marcella Papcun and Dale Troy, and we’re missing the student Martin Auberzinski.  The dress/hair match the woman in the center back row, so I’m pretty sure that’s Marcella, plus it makes sense to put two teachers who served as chaperones in the center back row.  A news story about graduation is below as is the big  group photo in front of the Thomas Jefferson Memorial.  This post ended up needing a bigger room in the Sepia Saturday hotel, but it’s all for a good reason – we’ve got some extra luggage this week!  It’s a lot of data, photos, links, etc, but as usual, I hope this all helps someone else in the long run.

leon kitko BCI graduation 1951