Friday, June 21, 2013

Paper Relations

Ellen Bean
Before closing out this chapter on Bill Bean’s family and all the photographs he had accumulated over his rich, full life, we couldn’t go on without stopping one last time to share some pictures of his wife, Ellen.

As I mentioned toward the beginning of this series, Ellen was someone I had never met and of whom I only knew the slightest bit. Even then, my memories of those shared stories might turn out to be suspect, once that research on her family line gets more completely documented.

Thankfully, in the process of digging through the Bean family story, I was able to discover Ellen’s maiden name, and at least a slight bit of information on her own roots.

Ellen Bean in California with relatives or friends

As you may recall, Ellen was born to two Swedish immigrants, John W. and Jennie S. Carlson Danielson. While her parents were born in Sweden, Ellen herself was born in California, as was her brother, Carl Arthur Danielson.

Ellen was evidently a bit older than Bill, having been born in February of 1894 to Bill’s arrival in March of 1896. Though I believe her family had settled around the Fresno-area farming communities, Ellen had somehow met her Bay Area intended and actually exchanged wedding vows with Bill in his native Redwood City in 1929.

Ellen Bean

For whatever reasons, Ellen and Bill entered into marriage later in life than many of that era—he had just turned thirty three only a few days earlier—and yet, they saw their marriage come to a close relatively early. Only five days after their thirty first anniversary, Ellen passed away in Riverside County, California.

Perhaps sixty six years was a respectable age to have attained in those days. Whether the end came as a surprise or as a welcome relief from life’s painful final chapter, that small dash representing the span between Ellen’s birth and her death was thankfully illustrated by some of those unlabeled photographs Bill left behind.

Providing a peek at the little pleasures that made life special for Ellen, these pictures preserve for us a glimpse into the personality and preferences of someone we’d otherwise never have known.

Ellen Bean on back deck at home in California


  1. How cute is she in those red tennis shoes!

    With these photos of Ellen, I'm seeing just how important that dog was -- it wasn't just Bill's dog.

    1. Yes! Those red shoes are the case! I loved finding this picture.

      And oh, how I wish I knew the dog's name. A dog that loved simply can't just be called "the dog."

  2. If Ellen wasn't in the center of some of those photos, I would have thought the "main subject" was the dog!!! He (I think "it's" a he) is obviously much loved and loved the back fully.

    Is that Leona in the second photo? I wonder if if Mr. Grant is taking this photo?

    I was thinking the young boys in some of the photos might have been "nephews" - but it appears Carl Allen Danielson didn't have any children either. Perhaps Samuel's kids, Sam and Earle were in the earliest of them and their children in the later ones?

    1. Iggy, that's an interesting guess about the second photo. Looking at the original copy, it struck me that that woman looked too demure to have been Leona. Leona had a personality that could fill a room.

      On the other hand, if that were Leona, then maybe the man behind and to the left of Ellen could possibly have been Leona's husband (rather than Ellen's brother, whom I had originally thought it might be).

      I'll have to find some Danielson researchers online and see if anyone can speak for this couple--yea or nay.

  3. The dogs was an important part of their lives..a retriever for sure hunting all those ducks and geese:)

    1. I thought that beloved dog would catch your eye, Far Side. Yes...he truly had a special place in that family :)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...