Monday, December 31, 2007

More little surprises and puzzle pieces

My great-great-grandfather Boston had a son named Charles, born in 1872. He's one of my brick walls; I don't know what happened to him.

I vaguely remember some stories about him going to Mexico, and we used to have a glass jar with old Mexican bills and coins in it (which I probably sold in a garage sale). In his father's 1932 obituary, he's said to be living in "Aire Libre, New Mexico," but darn if I can find any current town or ghost town known as Aire Libre in New Mexico.

There are a few drab pictures--I'm looking at one right now with "Raising poles in Mex." written on the back. Why they're raising poles and what made this worthy of photographing, I have no clue.

I also have a postcard postmarked August 12 1918, ElPaso, Texas, from "Uncle Charlie." On the front is a picture captioned "Bird's Eye View of Columbus, NM." Looks like the set of a Western movie.

Actually, I MAY have three photos of Charles. The earliest is maybe 1880-1890, judging from how old the girls look and what they're wearing. 1888 would have been Jacob and Mary's 20th wedding anniversary, and the girls would have been 13 and 15; Charles would be 16 or 17.

The 2nd photo I have is a family photo taken on what was probably Jacob and Mary's 50th wedding anniversary in 1918, when Charles was 46.
The last is a photo of Jacob and Mary sitting on the steps of a porch with a younger couple. Mary died in 1924, so these mystery photos would have to have been taken before then--but not too much before; both Mary and Jacob have obvious aged. I suppose the man in these pictures could be 54.

Of course, the problem is that the photo isn't marked at all--no names, no dates, no places.

On the back of the postcard, Charlie has written to his niece that he and Grandpa (presumably Charles' father) are going sight-seeing, and in the same group of photos I found one of Jacob holding binoculars (which I realized are now in my posession), standing in front of a landscape that is clearly NOT Missouri. And I know that in 1920 Jacob and Mary visited their daughter Lena and her husband T.I. Beazley, who were chicken-farming in Albuquerque NM in 1920. So I suspect that photo was taken somewhere in New Mexico.

Now. If I can only find Charles in some census. It looks as if he married. Who did he marry, where did they live, did they have children, when did he die?

Stay tuned. Or better yet, if you know anything about Charles Boston or recognize this man, please get in touch with me!


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