Reminding me vaguely of the two little ones on the 1954 and 1955 Christmas greetings signed, “Helen, Sid, Diana and Judy,” a set of photographs from Bill Bean’s collection has me stumped as to whether I’m lumping the wrong blonde sisters together. Is this one set of sisters? Or two?
If you don’t remember those Christmas cards I posted last December, click on the hyperlinks and refresh your memory. These were the photos with the little girl in winter coat and muff—and then the next year, now-big sister and new baby.
Let’s see if we have found some further matches.
The first candidate for this matching game is a Polaroid snapshot of two little blondies playing with a brown and white spaniel. Of course, this picture produces two clues to link it to Bill Bean—first, his tendency to prefer his Polaroid camera, followed by the telltale hallmark of the same dog seen in many of Bill’s pictures from that time period.
A later picture—now entering the world of color snapshots—also features two blonde sisters, this time older and more sedate as they pose in their matching dresses. Again, there is a dog in this photograph, but this brown and white companion looks more like a basset hound than Bill’s spaniel. I’d like to presume the man holding the dog is the two girls’ father—and possibly the same man as the one sitting in the background of the previous picture. But I’m not convinced.
Even after scanning the two photographs and enlarging them to study the details, I’m not sure these two sets of sisters are one and the same. Yes, their mother(s) tended to prefer the high trimmed bangs in fixing their hair, but that might just be the style of the time. Or the way mothers thought their daughters ought to look.
Along with these candid shots in Bill Bean’s photo collection, two studio portraits were included. Once again, they appear to be of sisters—carefully trimmed bangs, matching outfits and all.
Whether these all belong to the family who once sent Bill and Ellen Bean yearly Christmas greetings—signed, from Sid, Helen, Diana and Judy—I may never know. Of course, if someone had thought to include a surname, I’d have one up on the genealogy website search engines.
Perhaps I’ll have to wait until some computer guru masters even more amazing search capabilities.
Or maybe I’ll have to resign myself to awaiting the release of the 1960 census.
That would be a long wait.