52 Ancestors,
in 52 Weeks
Week 8:
Family Photo

Rumple Family Photo, 1895

For all of us who are procrastinating about labeling photos I have one thing to say, “Be considerate of the genealogist of the future!” I count myself among those who are very bad about labeling physical and virtual photos. My father was very good about keeping an index of his slide collection, identifying each person, place and date. My maternal grandmother was also very good about labeling old family photos, and there is one in particular I found very informative.

Keepsake Photo

Among my mother’s keepsakes is an old sepia toned image of her maternal grandmother’s family. The image includes siblings, parents, nieces and nephews, and was taken in 1895. Fortunately my grandmother, Edith King 1903-1991, thought to write everyone’s names on the back of the photo frame with the date and location. What is most interesting is her note along the side indicating that in 1960 “12 of these people dead” and in 1966 “15 of these people dead”.

Included in the image is a framed photograph hanging on a fence post. I’ve determined it’s an image of my great, great, great grandmother, Mary Elizabeth McBride Rumple, and her youngest daughter Eliza, they both died in 1893. Too bad I do not know what became of that old photo! Particularly since this 3rd great grandmother is a brick wall for me.

Handwritten Notes by Edith King, 1903-1991

According to the notes on the back of the photo, the location was the farm of my great grandparents, Ella (Rumple) and Homer King, west of Spencerville, Ohio. (The family farm was in Mercer County, Ohio between Rockford and Spencerville.) The occasion was the birth of my great aunt Roxanne King, who sadly died in 1911 from complications of rheumatic fever.

Rumples 1895 Scan of Original


I have made a virtual repair to this photograph. I adjusted it to black and white and added everyone’s names and vitals.

Rumple Family in 1895, Annotated Version

I take this lesson as a reminder to label photographs, but to be honest I am still quite bad about following through. Maybe tomorrow I will start on that project. 52 Photos to Label in 52 Weeks?