Here, gathered in our beloved South Dakota, are a few members of our Williamson / Mattson Clan. Charles and Luella are to be blamed (be kind, they didn't know what they were doing). We're generally a happy bunch and somewhat intelligent (notwithstanding our tenuous grasp on reality). I'm also proud to say that most of us still have our teeth.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Three of Us in October 1961

Kim and I. 1961/62
I'm thinking its time to invest in another set of Suspenders

From the Fortress of Solitude
Pleasant Grove

Its a beautiful day in Pleasant Grove. Temperatures toy with the 60 degree mark and a light breeze accompanied with brief clouding make for a perfect afternoon.

For the past few posts we've discussed our Williamson ancestors. Today I thought I'd continue the theme and share pictures of other semi ancient relics, the first three children of Charles and Luella.

We didn't have a lot of money when I was growing up. Dad worked as a surveyor for the State of South Dakota and mom looked after the house and did other odd jobs around town from time to time. Photography in those days required disposable income. You had to buy film, shoot the pictures and pay to have the film developed and printed. So, people tended not to take many pictures.

We have very few pictures of when we were young. This post shows a few of the few. The top picture was taken at a photo studio. You can tell because we're dressed up and are sitting nicely posed, all characteristics of a staged shot.

The other three photographs in today's post were taken in a coin operated photo booth found in the supermarkets in those days.

You sat in the booth and raised or lowered the turning stool until your face fit squarely within the mirror. You tried different poses until you found the pose you liked. Then you leaned forward and dropped your quarters into the slot. You got 4 poses for your money with five seconds or so between shots to make any necessary adjustments.

I'm happy mom took the time after grocery shopping to stop at the photobooth near the exit of the Piggly Wiggly to take these pictures.

Here I am holding Kevin. I'm three and Kevin is three months. I had much lighter hair in those days, and plenty of it! I'm looking down at the coin slot and the glowing green light. Kevin is amazed at the whole thing and hoping I don't drop him.

OK, I happy to say I figured out how to look up and be ready for the flash. Nice eye contact and a descent smile for a three year old. Don't know for sure but I'm guessing Kevin is looking directly into mom's eyes. She has the privacy curtain open and is crouched down beside us holding Kevin firmly on my lap. I can hear her saying, "Look up into your eyes in the mirror. Look up not down. Look at yourself. Hurry, its about to flash!"

And the last one is the keeper. I've got it all figured out and Kevin is cooperating. After the pictures it was back into the car and up Signal Heights hill to our duplex at 39 East Signal Drive.
It was Autumn. I'm sure Kim and I spent the rest of the day playing outside in our sand box or swinging or running around. We weren't one for naps. Kevin got the nap and then time in the play pen while mom ironed.

What is your very first memory? The furthest back I can remember is July 2, 1961, just a few months before these pictures were taken. I remember walking up to the bassinet holding my new baby brother Kevin, just brought home from St. John's hospital in Rapid City and trying my best to pull myself up so I could see him over the edge. That was 48 years ago.

And now I sit here dozing as I type. I should take a nap but won't. Remember, I never napped as a kid and I don't now. Don't know why, just can't sleep during the day.


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