I recently inherited 15 large boxes containing an estimated 23,000 slides. Many were taken by my great-grandfather, Frank K. Stevens, but the vast majority were taken by my grandmother, Lydia Stevens Shepherd. My plan is to work through the boxes in chronological order and share some of my favorites here as I go.
These photos were included in my grandmother’s first box but were actually taken by her cousin, Frances Herrick. Angleton TX, April or May 1944
Nearly 71 years ago, my daddy looked like this:
That’s his youngest sister, Anne, and his cousin, Pat, hugging their Bubba. Here’s Daddy’s other sister, Sarah:
Daddy (Edwin Jr./David/Bubba/Bub) was surrounded by girls during his growing up years. With two sisters plus three (and later four) girl cousins just down the road, they were all raised practically as siblings and he was the lone boy.
It doesn’t seem to have scarred him. Much.
And just like today’s family portrait sessions involving lots of kids, these little ones displayed unique personalities from the get-go.
In this particular set of sibling-cousin stairsteps, Daddy was second in line: Betty A, David S, Nancy A, Sarah S, Anne S and Pat A. He was about 6-1/2 when these shots were taken in 1944.
I like seeing the brown shoes I’ve heard Daddy tell stories about — the ones he grudgingly put on when leaving for school in the mornings, but then tucked up into a tree along his way there. I like seeing his stick-straight hair combed down neatly, much like it still looks today only with a little gray mixed in. I like seeing the tilt of his head, those big dark eyes, and that mischievous grin. Seeing him at this age makes me think maybe his mom was right to say he was the most wonderful, most beautiful, most gifted boy in all the world.
I have found a treasure trove.