May, 1939 The Story of Some Pictures

I have to admit, May, 1939 was much of the same as the month before.  I don’t know if it’s just me, but that makes it no less interesting!  And, in fact, I did have a mystery solved.

I cannot believe I forgot to mention this when I wrote about April.  There have been some very magical pictures, favorites even, that I have not heard the story of yet.  It’s such a pleasure that Babu writes about pictures when ever she or someone else takes them.  I don’t know why other than she is extremely detail oriented and organized.  For her, it’s probably just proper cataloguing.  For me, pure magic.

Remember this AMAZING picture?

vivi b

Well, in April Babu wrote:

Thursday, April 27th, 1939
Mr. Earle took our pictures in the office with his camera. He worked on mine over an hour and a half last night.

And then in May she writes:

Monday, May 1st, 1939
Mr. Earle brought in the finished pictures he took of of us, we seem very old. The skin is bad. He made an enlargement of mine and put it in a portfolio. Asked me not to tell the girls cause they’d razz him.

Oh the flirting!  I see you, Babu.  And how do you look old?  And your skin is still just flawless!

But I began to wonder which were the pictures of just her that Mr. Earle put in his portfolio?  It’s got to be these:

babu1babu 3babu 2


These photos were not labeled on the back and this is rare for her.  Also, she isn’t wearing the same shirt.  Costume change, I guess?  The reason I think these are the ones is that they are all clearly…not well taken photos.  I love them, don’t get me wrong, but in the one with the three girls the light is too harsh on them and in some of these the images are too blurry or there are other things off about them.  Mr. Earle, an employee at the same office Babu works at, is clearly an amateur photographer, but props to him for learning!  I appreciate these photos he took, so, thank you, Mr. Earle!

I have to admit, the second one is a little creepy.  At first I thought it was because the color was off, and I’m sure this was cutting edge photo technology those days.  (And again, all the more reason why I’m thankful to have these images.  I’m not trying to be snooty!)  But I realized that wasn’t why the picture struck me so.  It’s because Babu is smiling.  She rarely smiles in photos.  She puts on her proper photo face as seen in the black and white image above.  That is why I loved at first sight the one of the three girls.  Babu is rarely caught is such an honest face because she always makes sure to be posing.  The two colorized ones of her smiling are not genuine.  That’s OK.  It’s a rare glimpse!

There are so many other photos I can’t wait to hear the story of.  Most photos, as they say, speak a thousand words.  Babu’s speak those, plus a little extra!


4 Comments Add yours

  1. I would surmise that photos, at that time, were a much rarer and more treasured commodity than they are today, which might be why she had to write about them. They were magical to them!

    Another great entry. As I’m reading I’m thinking my mom would have been about two during this time, or maybe not quite yet. Fantastic trip through time!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I agree completely and I also treasure them and think they are magical!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. marilynyung says:

    Love the first picture! I also have a lot of old photos and my favorite ones are the unposed, spontaneous ones that were probably taken in error (since it seems posed photos were definitely the norm). I’m just glad someone kept them anyway!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s