Saturday, June 8, 2013

Harold and Mary

While going through the photographs left behind by Bill Bean—and, admittedly, also those passed down to him by his older sister Leona as well as the preceding generation—I remind myself that even though I don’t know these people’s names, they represent friends and family who meant a great deal to the man who kept them in his memory.

These are the scenes from Bill Bean’s life. They show me the people and places that were important to him. Even if I never find out who these people were, I’m witnessing a nonverbal testimony of what went into making Bill the person he was.

Granted, some of these photographs represented groups listed as vaguely as “my cousins from Fresno” or other such generic labels. Others not only have no labels at all, but tell a story that I can’t begin to decipher.

The picture I’ve chosen to share today is one such story. I have absolutely not the faintest clue who Harold was, and it would be hopeless to even think I’d be able to ascertain who Mary was. But from a vignette inked in on the reverse of a piece of paper no larger than the size of an index card, I can pretty much fathom what their story was—at least for that brief moment captured in the photograph.

On the back of a photograph of—I presume—Mary, addressed to Harold, she wrote:

love note from Mary to Harold possibly 1940s World War II
To Harold,
            The one I will alway’s love.
            And honey Please don’t ever forget that I do love you very, very much.
                        Loving you Alway’s
young woman posing in front of brick building with arms on hips with love letter inscribed on reverse from Mary to Harold


  1. Replies
    1. You get that feeling, don't you? And certainly devoted.

  2. Now that's a puzzle -- why would Bill have Harold's photo of Mary?

    1. That's what I want to know, Wendy! Either there's a story behind this one, or a big mistake...

    2. I find Wendy's question most intriguing.

      The background of the photo suggests a commercial setting, perhaps the back of the auto dealership owned by Bill Bean. My theory is Mary (or Harold) worked for Bill and at least one of them was a good friend.

      Also, I think i see a cigarette in her one hand.

    3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Was Bill a friend of Harold's or an admirer of Mary's? That's quite a jaunty pose that Mary has!


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