A smiling young couple, seated by the steps leading up to what looked for all the world like the “Beanery”—the Bean family home at 1807 Santa Clara Avenue in Alameda, California—seemed to be the very same couple as the one I had found in another picture in Bill Bean’s unmarked collection of photographic memories. I’ve been going over this mass of photographs, over and over, stacking them every which way, trying to find matches—or at least some sort of discernable pattern—to help me figure out who everyone was.
Thinking I might be on to something, I took the two photos in question and scanned them. I was hoping that a little digital magic might help confirm the match—especially as one of the photos had that rarest of benefits: a name and a date marked on the reverse.
Once again, my Photoshop program came to my rescue. Enlarging the picture to twice its size, I was able to make out not only the numbers posted to the side of the front door—1807—but I also discovered a shy young girl hiding in the doorway.
Of course, there was no label to tell me who these two—no, make that three—young people were. What I was hoping was that I would find a match in the second photo I had scanned, because that photo was the one which, unbelievably, provided the sparsest of information on the back.
D. + J.
Of course, that was of little help—but who am I to complain at this point? While I don’t know what the initials stand for, and while I don’t—yet—have anyone in my database with a surname of McGinis, at least I know what names to bestow upon this young couple, wrapped up in togs befitting an early spring day in California.
Whether this second couple is one and the same as the first, I am not quite sure. Once I enlarged each picture, the only possible matching details I could find are that the two men both sport curly hair and tend to turn out their left foot.
Not much to go on.
But at least more than I had before.