I made a pledge (NOT a New Year’s resolution!) to myself that 2016 is a year for my genealogical research to expand and grow to help other people with their searches. People were kind and helpful to me when I was a neophyte, so now that I am an advanced beginner, I can lend a hand and pay it forward.
Yesterday, during a “girl’s day” jaunt to several consignment and thrift shops, I found a small stack of old professional photos. These, to me, are an irresistible draw. The clothing, the hair, the faces. Most of the faces are rather serious or even sullen, but now and again there is a face with promise. A slight smile. A look of menace or hint of mischief lingers. I’d hoped to find one or two such pictures with a clue attached so that I could track down a family member, a name or address as a starting point.
I chose this one:
I just loved her face. When I cover her eyes and just look at the lower half of her face, the mouth is not really being held in a smile. Add in the big eyes and the side glance and it looks like a half-smile, or maybe one that is just disappearing after sitting too long in the photographer’s chair. There is a name in the corner. BINGO! 4 bucks later, this piece was mine.
After dinner dishes were cleared and the kitchen cleaned, I got to work on my search.
At first I thought her name might have been Lorie Corinne Jewell, but searching in various databases ruled that out. Perhaps the picture had been given to someone named Lorie. I did find a Corinne Jewell living in Fitchburg MA, born in 1906, which would be a fit with the ’24 graduation date. Searched for birth, marriage, and death records with that name and found a few news articles about Miss Corinne. I found her in her high school yearbook (same photo!) There is a blurb about her next to the photo.
She taketh most delight in sports and riding.
Corinne is seen quite often chasing the people out of the street in that car of hers. She likes to play nurse-maid once in a while. Corinne is a good sport always and thereby is an asset to her class.
She is especially capable in French.
Now, to find more clues. Googling brought more joy: she married a William H Turner and they had a child in 1946, but the child’s name is quite common.(Trust me, there are a LOT of Diane Turners.) I kept pushing, searching for names in obituaries and found a William H, Jr. who died in Florida. His parents names fit the bill and the obit contained the names of his children. A quick Facebook search (a couple of the names were uncommon, the best place to start.) VOILA. Message sent. Family found in less than two hours. When I get the photo to the granddaughter of Corinne Jewell Turner, my random act of genealogical kindness shall be complete, and it feels fabulous.
I should have been a detective, but I would probably have been a crappy one without the internet.
Love and kisses.