Weekly Update

Hello to all my fellow history lovers! What a nice summery day we have today! The days now are very warm, with a little less humidity, and the nights have been much cooler. Before you know it, we'll be turning our attention to fall's clear, crisp air.

Today I am sharing a family photo from the Henry Clifford Belcher photo album. Anyone who has a good eye for photos, and good equipment, would of course be expected to be the family photo taker, especially in the still early days of photography when Polaroids and Kodak Instamatic cameras were not the norm. A skillful photographer such as Henry Belcher could be depended upon to get the photo right.

Attached is a photo of a Belcher, Drake and Heath family gathering. Taken around the late 1890's, this wonderful photo appears to capture many of the family cousins as they got together to celebrate a patriotic event, most likely the 4th of July. The gathering took place at the home of William and Ella Belcher, now 20 South Street. More recently, the Buckley family owned the property which has recently been sold. Built around 1880, the house is one of several Belcher houses in the immediate area.

Having a photo is really nice, but finding out who the people in the photo are is really important.

When I first saw this photo I strongly suspected that the people might be Belcher family members. So, I did some research on the Belcher family of Easton. I came across a web site with that very title, so I took a look at it. Well, that was a brilliant stroke of luck! I took the chance of sending a copy of several photos to the people who put the website together. A few weeks later, I received an email that contained the scan of the photos with most of the people identified! Elizabeth Belcher Bundy (1909-2010), who was living in Vermont, was able to provide names for most of the people pictured. They are, seated from left to right:

John (Jack) Belcher, unidentified, unidentified, Ella Floretta Heath, Caroline Torrey Drake Belcher, Harriet Rebecca Drake, and Frank Belcher.

Standing, left to right: William Belcher, Hattie Heath, Henry Cliffird Belcher, unidentified.

It is thought that the several unidentified women might be members of the Heath and Kimball families. The Henry Belcher pictured here may be our photographer, so either there was a self-timer on the camera or someone else took the photo for him. Who knows? Perhaps some of you out there might be able to identify our mystery people. I do know that a Belcher genealogy exists, and perhaps someone might have a copy of it or even other photos from this important Easton family. If so, please let us know.

Stay well, and until next week,

Frank

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