Saturday, March 2, 2013

Fearless Females: Day 2–Photo of a female


March is National Women’s History Month and +Lisa Alzo at The Accidental Genealogist has presented the genealogical community with 31-derful writing prompts to encourage us to share our female ancestors.


I am blessed to have so many wonderful old photos that it was hard to choose just the right one. I finally decided on this one.

Russ, Minnie Mae and Orpie (2)

This is a picture of my great aunt Minnie Mae (right) and ER aunt (my great great aunt, left), Orpie. I picked this picture because I feel like it really reflects the dichotomy and dynamics of a large family. When you have ten plus children it’s not at all unlikely to have a child and a grandchild close in age.

Orpie was born in 1904; Minnie Mae in 1913. While they were nine years apart, they were still close enough in age to have been sisters as opposed to aunt and niece. This picture makes me wonder about their relationship. But here’s the even better part – I have a picture of them taken together over 50 years later:

Russ, Minnie Mae and Orpie

There they are, decades later, sitting side by side, Orpie still serious and Minnie Mae looking mischievous.

I didn’t get to know these women – I don’t know if ever met my great great aunt Orpie even though she lived to be 96 years old; I only remember seeing great aunt Minnie Mae a couple of times.  For all I know theirs wasn’t a lifelong relationship – perhaps they, too, only met a couple of times. But I like to think that they were lifelong friends, and sometimes I wonder what their lives were like in rural Southeast North Carolina where they lived, and the good and bad times they likely shared.

In honor of:

Minnie Mae Russ Averitt – March 17, 1913 to June 28, 2001


Orpie Flowers Kinlaw Steele – October 6, 1904 to October 19, 2000

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