Christmas in July

The focus of research and reconnaissance on the Odell-Berlage side of the tree culminated last week with the arrival of a thoroughly wrapped package of pictures and documents from Aunt Yvonne in Michigan. It really is a treasure trove. There are d…

The focus of research and reconnaissance on the Odell-Berlage side of the tree culminated last week with the arrival of a thoroughly wrapped package of pictures and documents from Aunt Yvonne in Michigan.  It really is a treasure trove. There are dozens of items representing hundreds of stories.  Everthing had notes attached with names, except for two mystery portraits done in Amsterdam; it’s a relief to know that even Aunt Yvonne has pictures tagged, “I don’t know who this is.”

Here are just a few images to give you the idea of the range of riches –  concentrating on Alice Berlage Odell, John’s grandmother, whose romance and wedding was detailed a few weeks ago.

A record of the her birth and those of her siblings from a small booklet that also records the marriage of her parents….

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The far left columns probably refer to birth registration books of Amsterdam.

Here are the three siblings with their mother circa 1901; Alice is seated on the chair, Thomas is in his mother’s arms, and Cecile is in the carriage:

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Alice looks to be about eight or nine in this costume photograph:

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Here she is with the first six (!) of her nine children; the picture must have been taken in the fall of 1924. Beatific is the word that comes to (my) mind.

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Alice is not in this next picture but two more children are, including John’s father, the youngest child standing.  This shot reminds me of the movie, Cheaper by the Dozen (the Clifton Webb-Myrna Loy version, not the Steve Martin version), especially since the family was living in New Jersey by then. Now that they are nicely arranged in age order, I can state emphatically that Yvonne is fourth from the right. 

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And here is Alice in 1946, pictured in her Certificate of Registration, issued in London under Aliens Order, 1920 — still remarkably beautiful…not to mention all the great genealogical information!

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No doubt you’ll be seeing more of the images in the months to come.  A note of deep apprecation, Yvonne, for your gift and your trust!

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I’m thinking of this post as more of a peek in the box than a scholarly work — citation holiday!

 

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